Ozzie wants to bid Dome farewell
White Sox skipper asks to be part of closing celebration
MINNEAPOLIS -- Ozzie Guillen has made a request to be part of the Metrodome's final month celebration, and negotiations are ongoing to see if the White Sox manager's special request can be fulfilled on Tuesday.
The Twins have used dignitaries to remove numbers in left field next to the sign, "Countdown to Outdoor Baseball," after the game becomes official before the sixth. Bert Blyleven and Dan Gladden stand as just two of the individuals who have already taken part, and Guillen would like to have the next honor.
Actually, Guillen would like to be the individual who blows up the Metrodome. But with the Vikings still scheduled to play in the facility, that action is out of the question.
"I will rip that down. I want to rip that down," said a smiling Guillen prior to Monday's series opener. "When are we going to do it? Maybe tomorrow? I will be so glad to do it.
"I'll call timeout and go out there. I will do it to make sure I don't have to come to this thing anymore. There aren't a lot of good memories in this place for me. Even when I was playing, there were no good memories. I'm glad this is the last time we come to this place."
Entering Monday, the White Sox had won just two of their last 16 games played at the Metrodome. Once again Guillen credited the Twins' fundamentally sound style of play, Ron Gardenhire as an underrated manager and the best 1-2 punch in baseball in Joe Mauer and Justin Morneau as major reasons for the White Sox struggles.
Nonetheless, as White Sox pitchers Mark Buehrle and Bobby Jenks mentioned on Sunday, Guillen won't be taking any mementos with him from this closing series.
"I don't need any souvenirs from this place," Guillen said. "Nope, I don't need anything. I don't think it's just us, a lot of people come to this ballpark ... [the Twins] play good here, they play good baseball. I don't think it's the ballpark, it's the ballclub. I don't know why people don't give these guys credit."
Gardenhire supported Guillen's request to be Tuesday's number mover, even tying the 13 days that will be remaining after Tuesday into Guillen's jersey No. 13.
"I'm all for it," Gardenhire said. "All he has to do is get suspended for a game. That's fine for Ozzie to go up there and change the numbers. That would be fine with me. He'd have to go talk to somebody above me though. I can't control that one."