"He's an Idiot."
By Benjy Lipsman in News on Feb 27, 2006 6:43PM
In an interview that ran in Sunday's Southtown, Frank continued to criticize the organization. He contended that he'd have re-signed with the Sox for $1 million and felt the team owed him that opportunity for all he'd accomplished over the course of 16 years. Considering they just paid him a $3.5 million buyout, why not offer to play for the league minimum if he wanted to stay with the Sox? While Chicagoist was sad to see him go, the reality of the situation is that the Sox are trying to repeat as World Champs and Jim Thome is a much more dependable option at DH. We'd have liked to see Big Frank remain with the team to finish his career, but they just didn't have the roster spot to accomodate him while trying to maintain a Championship-caliber team. He seemed to be in absolute denial of the fact that, at 37 and with his history of injuries in recent years, his playing days are coming to a close. He also blasted the lack of communication between him and management during the off season. Yet it sounds, by his own admission, like they did call him, and he simply refused to return their calls.
When asked about Frank's latest comments, Sox GM Kenny Williams finally stopped being political in his comments and spoke his mind:
He's an idiot. He's selfish. That's why we don't miss him. And we've held it in for far too long. And if you go out there and look long and hard enough, you'll find particulars. But I've got something to say directly to him. And I'm holding back as much as I can because, unlike him, I'll say it man-to-man, face-to-face.
That's holding back? He continued on, describing the ways in which he, Ozzie Guillen and Sox Chairman Jerry Reinsdorf had gone out of their way to assist and to accommodate Thomas over the years. He talked about ways in which the team included Frank in the World Series run and celebration. He also countered Thomas's remarks insinuating that the franchise just casts off players without any concern for loyalty by noting that the likes of himself, Ozzie, Harold Baines, Joey Cora, etc. have been invovled with the franchise for decades -- from prospects, to minor leaguers, to professionals to coaches and front office staff.
While clearly pissed off at Thomas, Kenny Williams made a firm case for the Sox being in the right in this messy break-up. Not to say that maybe Kenny crossed the line just a little bit, "[W]e don't miss him, by the way," Williams said. "And if you go out there and ask any one of my players or staff members, we don't miss him. We don't miss the attitude; we don't miss the whining. We don't miss it. Good riddance. See you later."
Maybe that's a little harsh for the guy who was the team's all-time greatest hitter. Even if it's true.