Ken Williams brought some humor to SoxFest when he stood in line during the fans' question-and-answer session Friday night before asking general manager Rick Hahn whether Hahn would do as good or a better job than his predecessor — Williams. Hahn quickly replied that the question was unfair because Williams had a better support staff — led by Hahn. All kidding aside, here are some of the facts that surfaced during the weekend: (bullet) Despite Hahn's contractual and statistical expertise, the Sox haven't shifted entirely in the sabermetrics direction. "The advantage we have here is that Rick Hahn is a great listener," assistant GM and former third base standout Buddy Bell said Sunday at a seminar. "He listens to the baseball people. He wants to learn about that side as we want to learn about having that sabermetrics side. It's unreasonable to think that won't help us. "And I think sometimes when you're looked upon as more of an old-school guy, I don't think it's old school or new school. The right way of doing things is using all the resources you have to make you smarter, to make you make a better decision. In this system, it's a lot easier for us because we have a good mix and good listeners." (bullet) The next two weeks will be important for the Sox and left-hander John Danks, who will start throwing breaking pitches in his latest step to be ready for spring training (Feb. 12) and the regular season. Left-hander Hector Santiago will be ready if Danks isn't. A coach for an American League team said Santiago pitched impressively during his stint for Carolina in the Puerto Rican Winter League. (bullet) SoxFest allowed the new coaches to acclimate themselves to several veterans. New bullpen coach Bobby Thigpen said he spent an hour with left-hander Matt Thornton, one of the more health-conscious players.
Sox GM Hahn proves to be a great listener
Chicago Tribune | Jan 28