FORT MYERS, Fla. -- The Red Sox and White Sox don't meet in the regular season until May 30, but that might be a series worth anticipating.
New Red Sox reliever Bobby Jenks is already exchanging verbal grenades with former manager Ozzie Guillen and the war of words is apparently heating up.
Over the winter, after Jenks criticized Guillen, Ozzie's son, Oney, tweeted a number of disparaging remarks about Jenks's tenure with the White Sox and said his father had lost confidence in the closer last season.
In Friday's Chicago Tribune, Jenks told Phil Rogers that the often volatile relationship between Ozzie Guillen and general manager Kenny Williams was a "distraction,'' to the White Sox and that Oney Guillen suffered from "middle child syndrome.''
Saturday, speaking to reporters in Glendale, Arizona, Ozzie Guillen fired back and warned that Oney had more amunition about the reliever.
"If Oney said everything he knows about Bobby Jenks, it wouldn't be a pretty thing," Guillen said. "I respect his wife. I respect his kids. I'm not even mad. I wish I was mad about it because I will rip his throat out.
"That's sad because it's coming from him. That surprises me. Everybody in this organization did a lot of great things for him. Did he pitch good for us? Yes, very, very good. But in the meanwhile, just worry about setting up some games over there. Just worry about Boston, don't worry about the White Sox."
"Too bad that all the stuff we had between me and Kenny interrupted his career because he did a lot of bad things last year. We lied for him, we protected him. I'm the first manager in the history of baseball to give a guy a week off to take care of his kids when his father-in-law was sick . . . I sent him home because he had to babysit his kids because his father-in-law was sick. I don't think any manager is doing that. But coming from him, I expect that."
Guillen said the White Sox "don't miss'' Jenks and noted that none of the current White Sox players had a phone number for Jenks.
"Criticism of me, that's fine,'' said Guillen. "He wasn't talking about the ballclub, he was talking about Ozzie and Kenny Williams. I respect that. Thank God he wasn't talking about the club. If Bobby was taking about the club, I would have been everywhere on ESPN because I will rip his guts. But he was talking about me. I can take that. Just be careful of what you say about Oney because Oney will say stuff he's not supposed to be saying.
"That's just a warning for him just in case somebody don't call him. Just stay away and don't name Oney for this because it will be pretty ugly."
Guillen added that Jenks had to take some responsibility for the White Sox finishing second last year.
"I kept him as my closer when he couldn't close,'' he said. "He's got to look himself in the mirror. Too bad. I still love his kids and wife.''