There he goes again | Bleader

There he goes again

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Ozzie Guillen in better times here with the White Sox
I love Ozzie Guillen, and I'm not afraid to say so publicly. Even so, in a news conference that lasted almost an hour today in Miami, where he's now managing the Marlins, Guillen was the first to admit that "I love Fidel Castro" was "a very stupid comment" to make to Time magazine.

Opening in Spanish with "Buenos dias"—and in full damage control while being ever sincere—Guillen said he was "very embarrassed, very sad" about the hurt his comments caused in Miami's Cuban-American community. "I was thinking in Spanish, and I said it wrong in English," he explained.

"You learn from mistakes," he added, "and this is the biggest mistake of my life." Thus trumping the time he referred to then Sun-Times columnist Jay Mariotti as a "fag" and had to go through a sensitivity training course.

Guillen took full responsibility for the controversy his comments caused in Miami, saying it would be wrong to take it out on team management or the players. "I let those guys down. I let the ball club down," he said, adding that his biggest regret was missing five games with them on a suspension just when they were beginning to play well.

Even allowing for the loose translation within his head, it's not as if he said anything so wrong. Michael Moore praised Cuba's health care system in Sicko. Of course, unlike Guillen, Moore doesn't need to rely on selling tickets to Cuban ex-pats for his livelihood. At least for now, Guillen has avoided firing or resignation with the suspension, although it will be interesting to see the stance the Cuban-American community takes now that it has him on the run.

"Today will be the last time this person talks about politics," Guillen said. That's too bad, as it was a joy to sit through Guillen's freewheeling pregame dugout media sessions here in Chicago, when he would talk about anything or anybody.

"I expect to be here a long time," Guillen said. "The next time I see the room with this many people, it's gonna be with the World Series trophy next to me." From Ozzie's mouth to God's ear.

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