Monday, February 08, 2010

Omar Vizquel Goes Up to 11

White Sox fans had to watch Omar Vizquel make nifty inning-crushing double plays for nearly a decade (1994-2004) as the perennial Gold Glove winning shortstop of the Cleveland Indians. Now we're going to get to see him do his very best impression of White Sox legend Luis Aparicio this season for the Pale Hose.


The White Sox retired Aparicio's number 11 shortly after his election to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1984, but today Vizquel and the Sox announced that he will wear number 11 this year in honor of his fellow Venezuelan shortstop. Doesn't Vizquel's tribute to the 75 year old legend put some warm fuzzies in your mitt?

Unfortunately, in Omar Vizquel the White Sox are getting a player who is basically as old as Luis Aparicio. Sox manager Ozzie Guillen made a joke earlier this season about accidentally calling Vizquel kid: "I don't want to say kid -- he's almost the same age as me." Ha. Ha ha. Oh crap.

But, although Vizquel will eventually get to the Hall behind some creamy career numbers and fancy glove work (11-time Gold Glove winner, 2700 career hits), his best days are far behind him. Despite plenty of team statements to the contrary, the Sox have invested $1.375 MIL in Vizquel as an extra coach to the watch-through-your-fingers-if-you-dare-round-robin tournament they currently have as an "infield". With Gordon Beckham moving to second base from third to make way for new arrival Mark Teahen and Alexi Ramirez seemingly having miniature carrots for fingers at short, Vizquel is going to have some mentorin' to do, as well as filling in as a utility man.

Vizquel is a class act. He's also the Roger Daltry of aged utility infielders. He'll still give you what he's got everyday if you really want it. Do you?


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