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  #106  
Old 01-26-2013, 11:40 AM
tstrike2000 tstrike2000 is offline
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This year is the first time in 10 years I've missed Soxfest, so I'm missing the feeling of baseball in January, but it sounds like a good time. In the past it's been good catching up with Brian26, Chisoxgirl, and Tebman, just to name a few. Guess I'll just have to go to a few more games this year.
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  #107  
Old 01-26-2013, 06:50 PM
Viva Medias B's Viva Medias B's is offline
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I haven't been to SoxFest for a number of years. It just isn't the same at the Palmer House than it was at the Hyatt Regency Chicago.
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  #108  
Old 01-26-2013, 08:10 PM
Golden Sox Golden Sox is offline
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Default Soxfest 2013/Saturday

I had a wonderful time today at Soxfest. It was jam packed with people. Most of the seminars I went to were SRO.
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  #109  
Old 01-26-2013, 09:15 PM
34rancher 34rancher is offline
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Haven't been able to go to Palmer house for stories. Who is this years "lost 20 lbs and in great shape" story? Anyone look noticibly larger for the thinly veiled "gained 10-15 lbs of muscle", when really out of shape?
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  #110  
Old 01-27-2013, 09:33 PM
BainesHOF BainesHOF is offline
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Friday was indeed crowded for at least the second straight year. Gone are the days where you could go from autograph session to autograph session without much waiting on opening night. The reason? It's pretty clear that Friday is not only for hotel guests despite what's advertised. A significant number of season ticket holders and perhaps others were issued Friday-only passes. Buying a weekend hotel package no longer gives you a great opening night of autograph collecting. It merely gives you another day to collect autographs.

It was nice to see so many retired players brought back. I think this year set a record for former players in attendance. I hope a similar number are booked for the future.

Saturday's after-hours party left a lot to be desired. No ample supply of pizza like last year. Mini-Jimmy John's sandwiches ran out in a hurry, leaving a couple sad tables of chips and dip left for people who didn't arrive for the party's opening.

In a welcomed change from some previous years, players arrived for their autograph sessions on time from my experience. Lots of players were great with fans. Paul Konerko and Frank Thomas are phenomenal with all fans, even the wacko ones. They get what a fan fest is all about. They're extremely respectful and accommodating regarding specific requests. Tom Paciorek was very friendly and downright jovial with everyone.

On the negative side, Jermaine Dye jagged me once again when signing a bat, purposely signing it way off center. It's too bad he feels the need to be like that. But Dye pales in comparison to Steve Stone, who belongs in his own Jag Hall of Fame. He singlehandedly ruined hundreds of dollars of baseballs by signing every ball on its side panel. Whenever a fan asked him to sign on the sweet spot as is the standard practice, his stock answer was, "No, you're just going to sell it on eBay." Really? If you wanted a picture signed, he'd personalize it, as if there's a big market to sell Steve Stone photos. Someone asked him what he thought of Chuck Tanner. "Overrated," Stone said with relish. The Sox need to end his autograph duties. He does way more harm than good with his swarmy, combative attitude.

The autograph lines were well-run. The kids working them did a good job. Things ran smoother than usual. I didn't see/hear any of the usual complaints. The one thing I'd add is the MVP speed pass didn't look so speedy anymore because of the number sold.

The Garage Sale was a mixed bag. Rios bats were only $50. Beckham bats were $50, too. I picked up a well-worn Baines jersey for just $100. Plenty of '72 throwback items were available. They were a bit pricey, but many fans love those uniforms. Vizquel autographed balls for $200 were ridiculously overpriced. So were lineup cards at $125 a pop. Mystery bags for $20 featured better-than-average items including player bobbleheads and World Series baseballs.

A few random bits of info from my player interactions...

Rowand has watched the '05 World Series DVD "quite a number of times."...When asked if Rios was going to bat third, Ventura said, " I just hope he shows up to spring training." I could be wrong, but it sounded as if he was taking a dig at Rios for his Soxfest absence...The Big Hurt has yet to start writing a Hall of Fame speech...LaRussa displayed his three World Series rings at his signings. I commented on how it would have been nice to have an '83 ring. That triggered a burst of passion. "If Dibber didn't screw up on the bases," LaRussa said. "And it wasn't just his baserunning blunder. He screwed up the bunt, too!" Whoa!...Peavy expressed confidence in Flowers, but said the team will miss A.J.'s bat. "We need a left-handed bat!" Peavy said...I commented to Baines that nearby LaRussa was his best manager. "That's a fair statement," Baines said...I told Konerko he should retire with the Sox. "We'll see what happens," he said in the most unsure way possible.

This Soxfest had a low-key vibe. The team's 2012 fade and a relatively uneventful offseason have expectations at a modest level.

Last edited by BainesHOF; 01-27-2013 at 11:56 PM.
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  #111  
Old 01-27-2013, 09:42 PM
Noneck Noneck is offline
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Good stuff BainesHOF. I know I shouldnt but I laughed out load about Stone. He is such a money monger.
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  #112  
Old 01-27-2013, 10:56 PM
34rancher 34rancher is offline
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Good stuff BainesHOF. I know I shouldnt but I laughed out load about Stone. He is such a money monger.
In a way, I can't blame him too much though. His generation didn't make as much bank as the last couple of generations have.
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  #113  
Old 01-27-2013, 11:26 PM
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Brian26 Brian26 is offline
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Originally Posted by 34rancher View Post
In a way, I can't blame him too much though. His generation didn't make as much bank as the last couple of generations have.
You're saying he's justified in being a jagoff to fans at a fan convention as an ambassador of the team because he didn't make enough money as a player 35 years ago? All the while, he has been paid millions of dollars as an announcer over the past 30 years, and the announcers of his generation (Jimmy Piersall for example) never came close to that kind of coin.

Or are you saying he should continue to be a jag and start a side business on ebay of selling his sweet spot signed balls? Baines already explained to you that those wouldn't sell for the price of a new unsigned ball. Look up Joe Charboneau memorabilia and get back to me.

All that said, he was friendly with me for a couple of moments and claimed he never wanted to leave at the end of last year FWIW.
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  #114  
Old 01-28-2013, 08:05 AM
shenk16 shenk16 is offline
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Stone is garbage. He doesn't no good for the White Sox organization. I would gladly trade his "knowledge of the game" for someone with some personality. I know there are a lot of Hawk bashers out there as well, but at least he gets what promoting an organization is all about. Steve Stone is the same guy that only signs baseball cards in pen...might as well throw that garbage away. It's an eye sore to display and it flat out ruins the card. He is so stuck on the fact that he was a Cy Young winner that he fails to acknowledge the rest of his career.

I actually had the complete opposite response from Dye when I went through his line on Friday and Saturday. Friday I had him sign an 8x10 of the World Series GW hit photo that I never had signed and then Saturday I had him sign a World Series ball. Both times he gladly signed WS MVP on it. Sorry to hear he didn't sign your bat where he should have. I know you were talking specifically about Dye, but most of the players are pretty wise to that stuff and usually ask where you want "bigger" items like that signed.

In between autograph lines, I was able to check out the seminars with the guys from the 83 team (which was entertaining) and the one titled, "Pen Pals" with Thigpen and most of the relievers that were there. I thought it was great that Matt Lindstrom was there even though he just officially signed on Friday. It was a pleasant surprise when I went to get an autograph from Nate Jones yesterday morning and he sat in next to him. I also liked his response during the seminar when a fan asked all of the players what their favorite uniform was and he responded without hesitation, "The one I"m about to wear!" Thornton said he was excited about wearing the 83 unis on Sunday and Thigpen said the same since that was the uniform that he came up wearing.

One of the big highlights for me this weekend besides meeting Tony LaRussa happened when I came back from watching the Hawks game at a bar Saturday night and Goose Gossage walked into the lobby with Roland Hemond. He stopped and talked with fans and signed a few autographs. I guess he was in town because he was being inducted into the Lou Boudreau HOF for the Pitch and Hit Club that Hemond is a board member for.

I also agree about Friday no longer being for hotel members only and the Saturday night dinner being a disappointment, but overall I had a great time as usual. Very happy about seeing some new faces. My one suggestion for the future would be to have the Sox bring in some of their top prospects for Soxfest. I realize this might bring on a few jokes about not having any, but Jared Mitchell, Trayce Thompson, Keenyn Walker, and Courtney Hawkins would be cool to see. Introduce the "future" to the fans!

Last edited by shenk16; 01-28-2013 at 08:44 AM.
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  #115  
Old 01-28-2013, 09:45 AM
Golden Sox Golden Sox is offline
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Default Steve Stone

I met him when he was playing for the White Sox. I didn't like him the first time I met him and I still don't like him. Granted he is a decent announcer, but I wouldn't care if he was replaced by somebody else. The best word I can use to describe him is arrogant. He comes off to me as if he's a no it all and he's too good to talk to you. I think he ought to count his blessings that he's had alot of success as an announcer. I would make a pretty good guess that he has made more money as an announcer than what he did as a player. That being the case he should be a little bit more fan friendly than what he has been.
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  #116  
Old 01-28-2013, 10:09 AM
Red Barchetta Red Barchetta is offline
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I met him when he was playing for the White Sox. I didn't like him the first time I met him and I still don't like him. Granted he is a decent announcer, but I wouldn't care if he was replaced by somebody else. The best word I can use to describe him is arrogant. He comes off to me as if he's a no it all and he's too good to talk to you. I think he ought to count his blessings that he's had alot of success as an announcer. I would make a pretty good guess that he has made more money as an announcer than what he did as a player. That being the case he should be a little bit more fan friendly than what he has been.
I think deep down Stone feels working for the SOX organization is a step backwards because his greatest career gig was with Harry Caray and the Cubs during their trendy "media darlings" days in the 80s. I know he left the Cubs organization on bad terms, however I think he's pissed the Cubs never offered him the executive management position he hinted to. (GM?)
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  #117  
Old 01-28-2013, 10:48 AM
SoxThunder SoxThunder is offline
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I don't really care how arrogant Steve Stone is...he's a great color commentator. It's refreshing to hear some quality baseball analysis in between Hawk's blabber.

I was at SoxFest all weekend and I also appreciate Stone's ability to conduct an insightful interview with players and coaches. In comparison, Ed Farmer hosted a session with Thornton, Jones, Linsdstrom and Thigpen and it was horribly awkward. No one knew if he was making a comment or asking a question...so many awkward pauses.
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  #118  
Old 01-28-2013, 11:50 AM
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asindc asindc is offline
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Originally Posted by SoxThunder View Post
I don't really care how arrogant Steve Stone is...he's a great color commentator. It's refreshing to hear some quality baseball analysis in between Hawk's blabber.

I was at SoxFest all weekend and I also appreciate Stone's ability to conduct an insightful interview with players and coaches. In comparison, Ed Farmer hosted a session with Thornton, Jones, Linsdstrom and Thigpen and it was horribly awkward. No one knew if he was making a comment or asking a question...so many awkward pauses.
Similar to his play-by-play.
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  #119  
Old 01-28-2013, 12:34 PM
My_Sox_Summer My_Sox_Summer is offline
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BainesHOF- good stuff man.

I was there Friday night and also thought it was really busy for "hotel guests only". I wasn't staying there, but my ticket rep got me some passes. I was #129 in line for Konerko and it still took 2.5 hours to go through the line. I was pretty burnt by that experience, meeting Pauly was great, but the wait was just brutal. I did catch Sale and Flowers pretty quickly on Friday, so that was fun.

Saturday I decided that it just wasn't worth it to wait in line. My dad and cousin were in so we pretty much camped out and listened to all of the seminars. That was fun.

On Friday, there was a guy in front of me that had 3 MVP passes and one was for his 5 year old just so he could get 3 autos each time he was up there. I guess I don't understand having multiple autographs of the same player on assorted items unless you are selling it, which he assured me he doesn't. Any insight BainesHOF?

I am not a collector though, so maybe that is the draw. I relish the experience more than the product. I do like bobbles though.

I thought it was fun, well run for a Sox event. I never count on the Sox to run something right but this was pretty good. Kids seemed to be having a good time, and that is usually all that matters.

The garage sale is pretty hit or miss, in all 3 that I have been to the selection is poor but there is usually a couple of things that are worth it. $10 new fitted caps were a great deal.
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  #120  
Old 01-28-2013, 01:18 PM
salty99 salty99 is offline
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I also agree about Friday no longer being for hotel members only and the Saturday night dinner being a disappointment, but overall I had a great time as usual. Very happy about seeing some new faces. My one suggestion for the future would be to have the Sox bring in some of their top prospects for Soxfest. I realize this might bring on a few jokes about not having any, but Jared Mitchell, Trayce Thompson, Keenyn Walker, and Courtney Hawkins would be cool to see. Introduce the "future" to the fans!
They usually send out a survey after it's over and I suggest every year to bring in some prospects but it never seems to happen.
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