It's no secret at this point that the Chicago White Sox aren't just the Twins' biggest rival in the American League Central; they're becoming the bad boys of the entire league. Let's take a look at the boys from the South Side. Behind the plate, the Sox play former Twins catcher A.J. Pierzynski. For a long while now, Pierzynski has been widely regarded by fans as a jerk with butt-ugly peroxided hair. This opinion now has the backing of Major League players themselves, since, in a Sports Illustrated poll, Pierzynski was voted the rival other players most wanted to see beaned. The team's skipper is the controversial Ozzie Guillen, who once threw a hissy fit when one of his pitchers refused to bean another batter, called a well-respected Chicago sportswriter a gay slur, and got angry when former White Sox star Maglio Ordonez left for Detroit, calling him his enemy. And then last season the whole team got in on the controversy bandwagon when they built a shrine of blowup dolls posing with bats in their clubhouse. Yeah, that makes beating the Sox feel good. But what would make a sweep of Chicago extra sweet for the Twins would be to pull themselves out of third place, where they've been languishing behind the Sox for most of the summer.
July 27-29, 7:10 p.m., 2009