Ozzie Guillen was hired away from the Chicago White Sox to lead the new and improved Miami Marlins. While Guillen was always an amusing guy in Chicago, his act wasn’t as well-taken and he lasted only one year with the Fighting Fish.
His career didn’t get off to the best of starts in Miami when he proclaimed his love for Cuban dictator Fidel Castro. Considering the large population of Cuban-Americans in Miami, it wasn’t exactly the smartest thing he’s ever said. He was suspended five games by the organization and never really recovered from that incident.
The Marlins were one of the highest spenders last offseason and could only muster a 69-93 record and a last-place finish in the NL East. In addition to several unsuccessful free agent acquisitions, the Marlins opened a new ballpark in downtown Miami. Considering the amount of money invested in the franchise, something had to give. And too many bad things happened for Guillen to remain in town.
Guillen lived a charmed life in Chicago and was protected by the media. Reporters regularly protected Guillen, or as some would say, that’s Ozzie being Ozzie. Despite winning a World Series in 2005 with the White Sox, he regularly clashed with General Manager Kenny Williams. Things came to a head last season and the White Sox and Guillen decided to part ways. Robin Ventura took over for Guillen and almost had the White Sox in the playoffs before a collapse a the end of the season.
As a Chicago Cubs fan, I always thought Guillen was a good manager. He seemed to get the most out of his teams and would always draw the negative attention away from his players. As a person, I found him to be an insensitive, arrogant windbag who was only interested in being the center of attention. I don’t question his baseball knowledge, I question everything else.
Follow me on Twitter @chicagobearjew and hashtag the letters #RML with your comments.