CHICAGO -- Following a second consecutive tough home loss to the Texas Rangers on Wednesday, White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen held a closed-door talk with his charges.
And the message of the meeting sounded a familiar refrain: Guillen still believes in this group, despite it sitting 8 1/2 games behind the Twins in the American League Central and eight games under .500 entering Thursday.
"I told them last night, 'If you don't believe in yourself, I do,'" said Guillen of the meeting's tenor. "I told [White Sox general manager] Kenny [Williams] about it, I said right in his face, 'I think we should win with this ballclub and compete with this ballclub.'
"You look around this ballclub, and if you release any of these players or let them go, they will be picked up by somebody. That's how good they are. You pick anyone out there, they will have a job the next day, a couple days later. I just want them to know I still believe in them. I want them to go out and erase two months and go get it from now."
Guillen made another point abundantly clear. When his team sits last in the AL with a .240 average and third from the bottom with a 4.75 ERA entering Thursday, it pretty much gets what it deserves in regard to the negative results.
The meeting ended with Guillen suggesting how maybe the issue is not in the clubhouse but instead in the coach's room, including the manager's office.
"You are a good manager or a good coach if you [get] the best out of your players. I told them I'm not a good manager," Guillen said. "Why? Because I don't think I [get] the most out of them. If those guys don't think I don't do my stuff, I was open, they can talk to me about it ... what they don't like about us, what we can do better.
"Everything went normal, nobody said anything. It's like if you're a teacher. If you're teaching a class and all of the sudden 80 percent of your class doesn't pass, it's like, 'Am I teaching the right thing or doing the right thing?' That's the same way with me.
"We have time to recover. We still have time to gain some ground," Guillen said. "But I can't do it alone. I'll try to help. I want to let them know we have to attack people, we've got to pitch better. We haven't played the way we should be playing. And we know if we lose 100 games, I will continue to say this ballclub is better than what we show."