After 161 victories, 119 losses, two no-hitters and one World Series title, Mark Buehrle's time on the South Side of Chicago is over.
In another unfortunate turn of events in Kenny Williams' reign of terror, one of the franchise's most recognizable faces is taking his talents to South Beach. After Williams said "congrats and good luck" in response to matching the Marlins' offer, it was all done.
It was a somewhat expected move for a White Sox organization looking to trim the budget. The Sergio Santos trade set the tone for what could be a very chilling winter for the organization's fanbase. As trade rumors whirl around for John Danks and Gavin Floyd's services, several moves are set to be made in the next few weeks.
Whether you thought he should have left or not, one thing is for sure: Mark Buehrle is going to be missed. His productivity, work pace and overall love for the game have made him one of the most enjoyable players to watch in baseball of late.
He was supposed to be a White Sox player for life, but sometimes, things change. Buehrle, unfortunately, was one of those changes.
Buehrle gave the Chicago White Sox his all every time he stepped on the mound. Win or lose, you know you could depend on him. He was the anchor of the White Sox rotation for over a decade, starting nine Opening Days. Next year's opener in Arlington, Texas will be different without Buehrle there.
Gone is the guy who wasn't afraid to talk to others in between innings during his no-hitters. He's the same guy who, with Willie Harris, would slide on the tarp during rain delays, before being frowned upon by management.
Frankly, White Sox baseball isn't going to be as fun to watch without Buehrle, both in terms of performance and attitude. He gave the team a special energy on the bump every start that will be noticeably missed.
Ozzie Guillen leaving certainly hurt, but this departure stings just a little more. Watching him for 11 seasons, I was almost positive he'd retire in a White Sox uniform and not ever appear in anyone else's colors. Now, he has to don those pathetic new Marlins jerseys. At least the weather will be nice.
Mark Buehrle, along with Paul Konerko, has been the staple of Chicago White Sox baseball in the 21st century. One day his No. 56 will be retired, as it deserves. It's just unfortunate we couldn't enjoy his presence for a few more years.
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