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This, of course, comes in the wake of Ozzie Guillen's departure as manager for the warmer climes of Miami, where he intends to launch "My Boat" with a newly restocked Marlins roster, including Mark Buehrle. Also gone: Carlos Quentin and Sergio Santos. The popular Robin Ventura will enjoy a honeymoon as the new manager, but that only means the onus of the Sox rebuilding on the fly to compete right away—or at least be respectable—falls squarely on general manager Kenny Williams.
The Sox clearly aren't trying to sugarcoat where they are. Dunn and Selig should go down as smoothly as a couple tablespoons of castor oil—or Old Style in a plastic Cubs cup, where Sox fans are concerned. Still, you have to admire the Sox' brass balls. Dunn is coming in to take his lumps and test whatever new attitude he's developed during the offseason under the acid test of potential fan scorn, and the same treatment figures to apply to Selig, even as he remains one of the oldest and most loyal baseball allies of Sox chairman Jerry Reinsdorf. The reception they receive will set the early keynote for the Sox season—for better or worse.