The Runner Sports

Robin Ventura’s Resignation Starts Interesting Offseason For Chicago White Sox

The Chicago White Sox started the 2016 season with some under the radar expectations of at least making the playoffs. After their 23-10 surprise good feeling start to the season, things looked like they were going to go well for manager Robin Ventura and company. Fast forward to Sunday evening when Ventura sat down in the U.S. Cellular Field Conference and Learning Center after a 6-3 White Sox loss to complete the 2016 season and it should be no surprise that he announced his resignation from the team.

“I’m not going to be back as the manager next year. I just feel it’s the right time. It’s more of a personal decision than anything,” said Ventura, whose contract expired after the conclusion of Sunday’s game.

The loss Sunday dropped the beloved one-time former All-Star Sox third baseman to 375-435. The team started Ventura’s tenure with a lot of promise by getting 85 wins, before dropping by over 20 plus games the next year with only 63 wins in his second season managing the team. That was probably the first sign the South Siders should have just got rid of him as manager, but a 10-win improvement to 73 in 2013 somehow helped him keep his job. What was initially a decision made by Ventura well before this final week of the season, is one that had writing on the wall since long ago.

Like this last season of Ventura’s, his first season managing the team in 2012 started with a lot of promise. As the team stayed atop the American League Central for 117 days before a September fade of historic proportions left the White Sox completely out of the postseason; while the eventual division winners, the Detroit Tigers, who bested them by just three games, went all the way to the World Series where they were swept by the eventual World Series champion San Francisco Giants.

Despite having high hopes to be contenders the last two years of Ventura’s tenure, the South Siders never even got close to sniffing the playoffs. As the Sox finished in fourth or last place in the division in each of his last four seasons and never really seemed to recover from that so oh so close, but just missing the playoffs first year.

Ventura spoke on how hard it was to get off to such a great start this year and could really be said of his first year with the team as well.

“What’s hardest is we started off so well, so you had the optimism that was there that you were going to keep that rolling, and then it didn’t continue. That’s the hardest stuff. The other stuff, it just happens. There’s probably stuff that happens all over the place like that. But that had nothing to do with it being tougher.”

A class act by all accounts, Ventura is just too nice of a guy to be a manager. The White Sox were in so many games during his occupancy, but could just never get over that hump, as a team with a lead with force manager might have exacted. Thus why this was the right move and change that should be the first of likely many this offseason for the second team in the second city.

While their North Side counterparts look to break a 100 plus year World Series championship drought, the South Siders will start the offseason on Monday with a lot of questions about whether they should build to contend or just completely rebuild. Either way, no matter what they choose to do, it should be an interesting offseason for the Chicago White Sox.