Daily Herald
Guillen still regrets A-Rod situation
By Scot Gregor | Daily Herald Staff
Published: 5/8/2008 12:13 AM

Regrets? White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen has less than a few.

Actually, the outspoken Guillen said he has only one.

"I don't feel guilty about anything,'' Guillen said Wednesday. "The only regret I have was A-Rod (Yankees star Alex Rodriguez), making that kid suffer.''

During the early days of spring training in 2006, Guillen was featured in a Sports Illustrated article. He addressed the inaugural World Baseball Classic, more specifically Rodriguez's decision on whether to play for the United States, where he was born, or the Dominican Republic, where his parents are from.

"He knew he wasn't going to play for the Dominicans,'' Guillen said in the article. "He's not a Dominican. I hate hypocrites. He's full of (bleep).''

Guillen apologized to Rodriguez the day after the story came out, but he's still bothered more than two years later by his outburst.

"I was telling the truth, but I didn't have the right to put that kid on the spot,'' Guillen said Wednesday. "That was a (bleep) thing on my part; that was low-class. That's why I apologized. I never start anything. I started it with Alex, and that's why I regret it. Everything else, (heck), no, because I know I was right.''

Guillen has been in the national spotlight since Sunday, when he launched a profanity-laced rant before the Sox' game at Toronto. After that, he was at the center of the infamous "blow-up doll'' flap.

Notorious or not, his celebrity is unmistakable, and Guillen says he has to watch himself when he's away from U.S. Cellular Field. The 44-year-old manager offered an example -- he went out for a drink near his downtown Chicago home after Tuesday night's win over Minnesota.

"I'm sitting at the bar and they offered me a drink,'' Guillen said. "'Can I buy you a drink? 'No.' Now people think I'm (bleeping) arrogant. You know why I say no? I said, 'Thank you. I'll buy you one.'

"Because that guy, maybe I'm wrong, they're going to go: 'Last night, I got (bleeped) up with Ozzie. That guy was so (bleeped up). That's why I have to be careful.

"So many things are going to be amplified because of who I am and what I do and the way I am. I go to the same places all the time. I go from my house to Starbucks, Starbucks to my house. I told my kids it's no fun for me anymore off the field.''