Konerko has been the quiet leader of the Sox for a long time. Today Konerko offered up some opinions on the direction of the team and what Sox fans can expect from the team in 2012.
Pauly thinks the team is headed in a good direction even after being very quiet during this offseason, “Even May, June, sometimes with a team you don’t know what you have so you certainly don’t know on the first day of spring training”. The teams Captain feels this team can contend in this division, also pointing out that often times there isn’t a big gap between the top teams.
“I hope I don’t throw anybody off with this but this could be a very successful year without making the playoffs.” How can that be? Konerko feels that the Sox can build a long term winner with the young talent in camp right, mainstays for years to come, “we have a lot of young guys. You can’t get around that, young guys in the pen, young guys in the field trying to establish themselves”. Pauly also feels one player in particular is primed for a big season, Gordon Beckham.
Konerko said, “I just know where he’s at right now in his head, I think he’s going to have a big year”, when asked about the Sox young second baseman. Beckham has yet to realize his expectations in the Major Leagues after 2 disappointing seasons, Beckham commented on this also, “I think sometimes I take it way too seriously, “I want to do so well for this team and for the fans, for myself that sometimes it gets too much of me.” He also pointed out that much of what Major Leaguers learn while playing in the Minors, Beckham had to learn on the biggest stage, “It’s really kind of like his rookie year maybe again. That’s the way I look at with him.”
Another player that Pauly addressed was Former Sox pitcher Mark Buehrle. “Not seeing Mark’s locker. I don’t know what to say about that. It doesn’t seem right.” Konerko and Buehrle have played together since 2000 including being on the 2005 World Series team.