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updated: 8/31/2011 9:35 AM

Another Guillen self-inflicted wound

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  • White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen could be headed to Florida to manage the Marlins next season. Or he could be back on the South Side.

      White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen could be headed to Florida to manage the Marlins next season. Or he could be back on the South Side.
    Associated Press/File 2009

 
 

One day, Ozzie Guillen is going to leave the White Sox.

But as was the case last week, last month, last year and every other time this tale is regurgitated ad nauseam, it is entirely up to Guillen as to when and how it will occur.

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He has a job for life with Jerry Reinsdorf, who pays Guillen a king's ransom to manage the team, act like an adult and represent the organization.

But he simply can't do the last two of those three things, so at some point Reinsdorf is going to fire him or trade him.

It might be next week, next month or next year, but it's going to happen because Guillen can't help himself when provoked by those he trusts to do his bidding for him.

In the process, Guillen pits himself publicly against an entire organization -- not just GM Ken Williams -- which is completely unnecessary and self-destructive.

While Guillen acts like a selfish child for whom no amount of praise or prosperity is sufficient to quench his imaginary thirst, he backs Reinsdorf into a corner.

And each time he plays a role in the portrayal of his relationship with Williams as a feud, he pushes the chairman toward only one decision.

So make no mistake, when Guillen gets fired or traded it will be of his own doing.

The reality is the relationship had worked for Guillen and Williams until last year when Guillen and family made it very difficult.

There was no pleasing him, regardless of how Reinsdorf and Williams tried to pacify the manager.

This year Williams took a different tack. He allowed Guillen to make some decisions and at times there was no decision because Guillen didn't want the GM's responsibility.

That's actually quite logical, but the GM wasn't going to force a player upon Guillen -- or send a Guillen favorite home -- and allow the manager to throw a fit and threaten to take his ball home again.

If that's what delayed the call-up of Dayan Viciedo -- and that's how it appeared all summer -- then clearly the relationship doesn't work anymore.

But there is no feud. It is fiction designed to further a story that Tuesday Williams referred to as, "Old. It's stale. It's boring. I think it's grossly exaggerated from the very beginning and I think malicious in intent.''

Guillen on Tuesday said the two get along fine. There is disagreement, of course, just as you have daily with your spouse, your kids or your parents.

But if Williams has to tread so very lightly to avoid a temper tantrum from the dugout, something has to change.

To Jerry Reinsdorf's credit he spanked Guillen twice last year, while begging him to stop uttering foolish things and imploring him to get his family to do the same.

Reinsdorf explained to Guillen that it only hurts the manager when others use him publicly, but it worked merely to a point and here we are again with Guillen falling victim to the same tired words, changing only the date and the amount of damage done to Guillen.

So he's on the verge of ruining a good thing. He has a great job that pays well, an owner that loves him and a contract for 2012.

And it's never enough.

He always says be careful what you wish for if you don't want Ozzie Guillen around, and he may be right.

But he might also want to be careful wishing for a job in Florida, where the owner and team president have a skin so thin that they recently demoted a fine young player because he was too popular on Twitter.

They fired Joe Girardi when he asked them not to rip the umpires.

They whacked Fredi Gonzalez for benching Hanley Ramirez.

They are on their best days meddling and manipulating.

And Guillen wants to work for them?

He's going to get a chance sooner or later, and it's probably going to be sooner if he doesn't grow up in a big hurry.

And when it's over, Guillen will play the victim like no one you've ever seen, but the real victims are the fans, who have had to watch this nonsense year after year, and Reinsdorf, who has a management team he loves but can't keep together.

The shame of it is, without all these self-inflicted wounds Guillen could have worked here forever.

And not many people manage to get fired from a job they could have had for life.

brozner@dailyherald.com

•Listen to Barry Rozner from 9 a.m. to noon Sundays on the Score's "Hit and Run" show at WSCR 670-AM. Follow him @BarryRozner on Twitter.

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