By David Schuster-
DALLAS (CBS) With all the rumors coming into the Winter Meetings concerning the Cubs and White Sox, who would have thought the biggest story for Chicago was someone leaving the city. The Cubs still may make a minor, and I emphasize a minor, deal before they leave town while the Sox are done here.
So the big story for baseball fans back home is Buehrle leaving town to sign a four-year, $58 million contract with the Miami Marlins. Buehrle will be reunited with Ozzie Guillen down in Florida and that was truly the only place other than Chicago that he would have pitched. Yes he did have a comparable offer from the Washington Nationals but Buehrle is a person who doesn’t like too much change and that’s why in Miami he still has a manager he is more than comfortable with.
Buehrle, as promised, did come back to the White Sox one last time to see if they would offer him a deal that would have been slightly less then Miami. But the Sox just couldn’t meet the price and Kenny Williams got right to the point.
“It sucks and he will be missed,” Williams said. “Mark is a great pitcher but an even better person. I’m happy for him but we have to move forward. I know Sox fans will be upset that he’s moving on but he’ll always be a member of our family”.
As for Guillen finding out that Buehrle was now a Marlin: “Very happy to have him with me. He’s always been one of my favorite players. I know what we are going to get from him and he knows what he’s going to get from me and that helps. In the end I didn’t have to convince Mark as much as I had to convince his wife”.
So Guillen and the Marlins did their convincing job and of course the $58 million didn’t hurt either and Mark Buehrle is now a former White Sox player who some day will have his number retired and his face etched on the outfield wall at U.S. Cellular.