I wouldn’t say 99 percent, I’d say pretty much everybody in this clubhouse would approach that play the same way Sori did. The ball hits in the guy’s glove and rattles around, and right as you hit that line drive, you’re almost expecting it to get caught. It reminds me of that blooper of Sean Casey hitting the line drive over the third baseman’s head and hits off his glove and Sean thinks it’s caught. He throws his helmet down and then realizes the guy didn’t catch it, so he puts his helmet back on for whatever reason, and runs down to first and gets bang-bang thrown out and throws his helmet again.
It was one of those things — I think maybe it was more the frustration of the year in general that we’re having, so when something happens like that, the fans reacted. That’s one thing we’ve prided ourselves on this year. We’re not winning as many games as we thought we’d win this year but every single meeting we have, Dale commends us on how we play the game the right way and play hard, and Sori is one of those guys. I think the fans notice his defense and how things have gotten better working with Dave McKay. We don’t have any guys not run out balls. Obviously, that play yesterday, every single guy in this clubhouse would’ve reacted the same way and assumed you lined out.
It was hard for me to hear that from the fans. I know how much Sori means to me as a teammate. He plays hurt. I wish the fans could be inside this clubhouse and see what we see as players. Dave McKay didn’t know what Soriano is all about until he came over here and he said, “Man, I absolutely love that guy.” He said, “When I was on the other side, I wasn’t too sure. He hits home runs and watches them a little bit and enjoys it and enjoys the game.” Once you play on that guy’s team, you see. I was telling Sori that he and Rafael Furcal are my two favorite teammates. They come to the park with so much energy and they’re always happy. You wish the fans could get an inside look at a guy rather than just judging a guy from what they’ve read or heard.
Just winning ballgames right now is important for us. I don’t think it’s a motivational thing to play the White Sox. If it was, it’d be a really good series for us to look forward to because it’s easy to get the adrenaline going with the rivalry and the way the fans get into the game. Our fans have been into the season since Day 1. Offensively, we really haven’t shown what we showed them last year. Hopefully, we can find that rhythm again.
If we can get Soriano swinging the bat well again with the way Derrek is swinging and add on Aramis around the All-Star break — maybe before, maybe after — if we can do that and stay pretty close in the division race, we’ll feel pretty confident.
I was hurt last year during the Cubs-Sox series. I think I was 12 days into the DL stint when we played the White Sox at their place. I was healthy and I knew I could play but I had to ride out the 15 days. Just to watch that atmosphere — it was like a playoff atmosphere — and to not be part of it, that stunk. I’ll be looking forward to it this year.