Spring Training '07 Preview: Chicago White Sox
Ninety-six million. That's how gritty Darin Erstad is.
The Chicago White Sox, in an effort to get tougher and hustle some more, added Darin "Tuffygrit" Erstad this offseason. Needless to say, the team is already excited about what he can bring to the table for at least fifty or so games in 2007.
"I feel like there were about 60 games last year where we were not tough," White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen attempted to say. "If we have Darin for half of those, I feel like we will be tougher and get us some winning baseball."
He added, "[BLEEP]."
White Sox GM Kenny Williams jumped at the opportunity to bring Erstad's five-tool combination of toughness, grit, hustle, presence, and injury-proneness to Chicago.
"He brings a certain presence to the clubhouse," said Williams. "Him just being there reminds other players to be tough and hustle. Even when Darin's hurt, he's still right there in the clubhouse, like he's telling the other players 'hey, I can be just as valuable when I'm not playing!' The guys really respond to that, you know?"
Angels outfielder Garrett Anderson, Erstad's longtime teammate in Anaheim, raved about Erstad's ability to affect a team's entire mentality.
"He does get hurt a lot," explained Anderson, "but when he's out, if your team struggles, people talk about how you're just missing Erstad's presence in your lineup, and you don't feel so bad. If your team succeeds, then people say 'imagine how good they're gonna be when they get Erstad back!' Nothing Darin does ever has any negative impact on anything, and that's why I feel like Chicago is really gonna love him."