Will Ohman didn't see the field in Tuesday's 7-6 loss to Kansas City, but if the left-handed reliever thinks he can hide out a bit until he can turn it around from a disastrous start to his 2011 season, manager Ozzie Guillen once again laid down the law.
"He's here; I have to use him. We've got only 11 pitchers," Guillen said. "I don't have the luxury to (match him up for one hitter). Maybe later on I will. But he's got to get his head out of his (butt). I don't want to punish the kid. He had what, two bad games? He knows that, we all know that. I'm not going to change anything."
Ohman, however, must change something.
Signed as a free agent during the offseason, Ohman gave up three runs in each of his first two outings to enter this week sitting on a 27.00 ERA. Guillen reiterated that it is Ohman's job to turn those numbers around, and it's the manager's job to put him in position to do so.
"I don't care what the fans think or what the media says," Guillen said. "It's my problem. He needs to pitch. We need him pitching. If he's not going to help us, we'll put people in his place that will. I'm not going to put him in and then yank him back out. If you're pitching and you see someone warming up right away, you lose your confidence. I want to show this kid I still have confidence in him and that he can get people out. I still believe he can help us."
Once April gets over with and Jake Peavy possibly is up and running, ready to join the rotation, the Sox might go to 12 pitchers because they won't have the luxury of the numerous off days April served up. Ohman needs to get his stuff together and make sure that he's a part of that.
"He's pitching a little longer now because they were scoring runs (taxing the bullpen)" Guillen said. "The reason I put him back (Sunday) was to let him regroup. We were already down. Just give him another inning, and it gives us a chance to rest the other relievers, but he couldn't do it."
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