Now that everyone is in a good mood, Paul Sullivan is ready to answer your questions about the White Sox. Or maybe not.
Well, Paul, I appreciate another fine week of non-answers to questions posed by those who are honestly curious and pay your undeserved salary. As well as further moratoriums on real baseball-oriented questions and concerns. So what if you're sick of them. Since you have never answered one of my real baseball questions, how about telling me what brand of toilet paper they use in Comiskey Park. At least I might finally learn something from this column. --TJ Brado, Seward, Alaska
Is there anything you can do to stop the TV stations from canning the background noise at the ball games? It takes away the real ball game. No one is yelling or jumping up or down and yet the background noise is very bad. The TV stations should wake up because they are spoiling the games. Thanks. --Ed Fischer, Park Forest
I noticed this last weekend when I had a day off and watched the
game. You can hear that incredibly loud Sox fan who won't sit down the entire game, screaming and bellowing and acting like he's having a heart attack. I don't know how to mute this guy out, or the other fans whose commentary is heard in the background of Sox broadcasts. Maybe the announcers will just have to talk louder and drown him out. I'd suggest listening to the games on radio and turning your TV down.
The Sox may be better off inserting Foulke in the starting rotation and instead groom our young talented arms in the bullpen. Foulke has expressed desire to be a starter and indeed his pitching ability is more suited to be a starter. Of course, I can't ignore that the Sox
would be displacing one of the best relievers in the game, but the starting rotation needs a stimulus soon if this club is to compete in the playoffs. Perhaps I am panicking too early? What are your thoughts of this move? --Gregory Badar, Cranston, R.I.
Paul, it seems to me that the answer to the Sox starting rotation question is sitting in the bullpen. Let's move Keith Foulke into the starting rotation (where he wants to be) and allow Howry and Osuna to share the closer's role. In addition to solving this problem, it would allow us to use our excess young arms in a package deal to Texas for the best catcher in baseball, Pudge Rodriguez. Your thoughts, Paul? --Jack Moore, Columbia City, Ind.
Excess arms? And those would be...? The idea of
moving Foulke to the rotation is interesting, but he got tired in his second inning against the Yankees on Thursday and would take a while to stretch himself out. Maybe it's an idea that should be considered after the season. If it didn't work, the manager and pitching would be ripped by everyone.
Hi, Paul, does it look like Howry will ever get his fastball back into the upper '90s? And what press box offers the best spread? Even better, what's a typical day in your life on the road? Love your work, Molly. --Molly Ryan, Brookfield, Wis.
Molly, you ask a lot of questions, but I'll try to give you some
abbreviated answers: No. None. Grueling. OK, I can already sense that TJ from Alaska is getting upset, so I will elaborate. No, Howry doesn't look like he'll get back in the upper 90s, so he'll simply have to adjust. I don't typically eat the press box food, going to the concessions instead. Baltimore has the best concessions, though Comiskey is right up there. A typical day on he road? Sitting here in my hotel room answering e-mails, going to the park and interviewing millionaires (and the manager), writing a couple stories, going back to the hotel, crashing out.
Did Rob Dibble really throw a ball at your head? What was that all about? --John Crane, Chicago
You'll have to read my tell-all book: "Confessions of a Sox Writer," coming soon to a bookstore near you." By the way, I caught Dibble on ESPN on the steroids controversy. First he said only a handful of players do steroids, then said 9 out of 10 players don't do steroids. So, it's either 10 percent of players or perhaps five, according to Dibble. That's our Dibs...not exactly a candidate for MENSA, is he?
The Cubs have the worst record in baseball and we don't. Am I wrong to consider this a great season so far? --Tom Kolak, Costa Mesa, Calif.
Tom, no one likes a smart alec, especially TJ from Alaska.
I know it's early but...if the Braves are still hovering around .500 by the time the trading deadline arrives and the Sox are still in the race, do you think Atlanta would be willing to trade Greg Maddux and what is the least you think they would ask for him? --Lincoln Wilson, Chicago
Maddux is a free agent and it doesn't look like they are going to
re-sign him. I doubt the Braves would trade him, but if they did, the chances of him coming to the Sox are probably about 10,000-1. He makes too much money.
It's getting to be that time of year when people start grumbling about who should and shouldn't be on the All-Star team, and the exclusion of Paul Konerko's name from the ballot is bound to add fuel to the fire. Since you have so much clout (no sarcasm here), I was wondering if you could pass on my suggestion to the powers that be. Why not let the players choose who should be on the ballot, thus avoiding player's names that are no longer on
the team, having a lousy year, etc., and then let the fans vote out of that batch? Managers can still pick pitchers and reserves. Makes sense to me. (Of course common sense and baseball don't go hand-in-hand.) What do you think? --Amy Garlinger, Wheaton, Ill.
Good idea, Amy. But you're right. It makes too much sense. As for my alleged "clout," I will pass this on to Jerry Reinsdorf, an avid reader of Ask Paul and close, personal friend of Bud Selig. Look for changes, and pronto.
Why did Manuel bring in Foulke in the eighth last night? Foulke has always had trouble going two innings. Does he have that little faith in the rest of his bullpen? --Barry Miller, Chicago
Paul Sullivan's answers
The Tribune's Sox writers answers readers questions throughout the baseball season.
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