Guillens disappointed in son's slot
Family expected Ozney to be drafted higher than No. 668
CHICAGO -- Tuesday could have marked a memorable time for the entire Guillen family, the start of youngest son Ozney's professional baseball career, with the left-handed-hitting outfielder joining father Ozzie and brothers Ozzie Jr. and Oney in the family business.
"Obviously, it's a disappointment," said the White Sox manager before Tuesday's scheduled game with the Tigers, shortly after his son was selected.
"I have a son myself and you are always wishing the best for your family and your kids," said White Sox director of amateur scouting Dough Laumann. "There's always going to be a level of disappointment regardless of where you go. I think Ozzie respects the job we do, and we certainly respect the job he does. We stacked them on the board the way they were supposed to be taken, and that's what we ended up doing."
The Guillen family, however, believes Ozney, a standout for Monsignor Pace High School in Florida, should have been selected higher. There were players who played with or against Ozney in high school or summer ball and were picked in a higher round who the family did not think were better than him.
Guillen admitted that he did not talk to scouts or anyone involved with the Draft to see where their projections had Ozney slotted.
"I saw him play, and it surprised me that he [fell] that far before getting picked," Guillen said of his son. "I know baseball a little bit. This kid has a good future as long as he doesn't get hurt. ... You can say, '[The heck with] this thing,' and do something else, or get better and prepare yourself for what is coming.
"Knowing my kid, he will prepare himself better and show people they were wrong or right. That's all you can do."
Ozney most likely will be proving people wrong at the collegiate level, where he has a scholarship to play baseball and attend South Florida. Still, although 29 other teams also passed on Ozney, the fact that he fell that far simply doesn't sit well with this proud father.
"Twenty-second round? Anybody can go 22nd round," Guillen said.
"I respect the scouts' opinion with all my heart. I hope the 20 guys they pick before [Ozney] help us or help the White Sox ... But I'm a baseball man. I saw him play, and I saw him compete against a lot of people out there and I think this kid -- it might help him to improve himself.
"There are a few players out there that weren't [high] picks and made it to the big leagues, but I think the 22nd round in high school doesn't mean anything. I think the White Sox did what I told them ... I don't need any favors or he doesn't need any favors.
"In the meanwhile, it's kind of hard. His expectations, not mine, his expectations were a little higher," Ozzie continued. "He thought he was a little better player than what other people think. ...
"The hardest thing for us is to talk to him about it. He feels embarrassed, he feels like he let himself down. He thinks he's better than a few players picked by teams before him. But I said, 'Listen, that's part of life. You learn from that, you get yourself stronger mentally and you prove people wrong. That's all you can do.' I always say things happen for a reason."
Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.