White Sox manager could be the key ingredient for the team to sign one of the top free agents available this offseason.
The White Sox should find out shortly after the new year as to what team Manny Machado will sign with. Although they’ve had their meeting with Machado, the young free agent superstar has yet to announce what team he will sign with.
While there have been reports of Machado perhaps signing with the New York Yankees, the Sox could have an advantage in their attempt to sign the 26-year-old infielder. That advantage could be Sox manager Rick Renteria. Although Renteria hasn’t managed a winning team in MLB yet, he has had the support of each front office he’s worked with in the Chicago Cubs and with the Sox.
Despite being fired by the Cubs after the 2014 season to make way for them hiring Joe Maddon, Renteria had a positive influence on that team. He’s had a similar impact on the Sox as well and many players, including those whose primary language is Spanish, haven’t said anything bad about him to the media.
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Renteria could better relate to Machado than Aaron Boone of the Yankees could which is a huge factor. Machado did make headlines when he mentioned he’s not the ‘Johnny Hustle’ type and it could present a conflict with Renteria. The Sox manager hasn’t been shy to bench players for a lack of hustle the past two years.
If Machado wants to perform well for the Sox, he would certainly be wise to hustle on every play. It doesn’t appear, however, that the Sox were deterred by Machado’s comments from this past postseason. Given that Renteria has benched veteran players for not hustling, his interest in Machado along with the Sox front office has to be a positive sign.
The Sox don’t have the same prestige as the Yankees but they do have a manager that can relate to not only Latin players, but all players. Many Sox fans think Machado’s brother-in-law Yonder Alonso will help the team sign the free agent. It could very well be Renteria who helps the Sox lure Machado to the South Side.