07/22/08 8:42 PM ET
Logan struggling but feeling good
Lefty relief specialist has had five straight shaky outings
By Scott Merkin / MLB.com
Loosely translated into the South Siders' baseball world, it means that Guillen will go with the players who are performing consistently. Boone Logan presently would not fall into that particular category.
Over his last five outings, Logan has allowed 10 runs, eight earned, on 10 hits in 2 2/3 innings, raising his ERA from 1.95 to 3.86. The left-handed specialist had built up Guillen's confidence enough during the first half to earn far more work than just the one or two usual batters.
But even with Logan's recent struggles, yielding three runs on four hits in one-plus innings on Monday, coupled with Guillen's postgame edict, the 23-year-old remains firmly in the White Sox relief picture. He's there, at least, for now.
"He made a couple good pitches. He made a couple of really bad pitches," said Guillen of Logan. "You can take the negative to the positive. The only thing that's going to come out is he is going to continue to pitch, and he's going to dictate to me how I'm going to use him and how much confidence I'm going to have in him. He's got to make the call.
"Either you're going to continue to pitch in tough situations, or you're not. That's the way I'm going to use him. I want to see the guys throwing the ball better, but in the meanwhile, because he got a bad outing, I'm not going to put him in the dugout."
This stretch of poor results has not lessened the confidence of Logan, who has grown as a pitcher and as a professional in each of his three big league seasons. He carried a run of 17 consecutive scoreless outings, covering 14 1/3 innings, into June 15 before his fortunes began to change.
Pinpointing the reason for the recent difficulty is as frustrating for Logan as the results themselves.
"Your guess is as good as mine," Logan said. "I'm still going out there and making my pitches. I feel great. This is probably the best I've felt all year.
"I've been getting ahead of all the hitters. It's that one pitch that I've been leaving up. It really just comes down to making pitches. I'm staying positive about it.
"Like I said, I feel good and I'm not walking anyone," Logan added. "So I've got to stay positive about that. If there were other things, if I was getting wild or something, it might start getting in my head a little bit. But it's nothing like that."
Logan has issued just two free passes in July, while fanning six. There also hasn't been a noticeable velocity drop, so Logan simply is staying focused on his mound work in the face of Guillen's push for production.
"I can't let that stuff bother me. I told myself to stop thinking about stuff like that," Logan said. "If they're going to do something, they're going to do something. It's out of my hands. All I can do is help the team the best I can."
"He's going to continue to pitch," Guillen added. "And the only way he's going to help himself and the club is to go out and perform the right way."
Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.