Ventura: I'll worry about extension later
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Robin Ventura didn’t mean to imply he doesn’t want to manage the White Sox when he declined a contract extension this offseason.
On the contrary, the very reason the second-year manager bypassed the one-year offer made by general manager Rick Hahn is Ventura wants to know he’s still the best candidate when the time comes.
Similar to his one-day-at-a-time approach to managing, Ventura wants to proceed as planned and worry about 2015 when it gets here. Both Ventura and general manager Rick Hahn confirmed Wednesday a CSNChicago.com report that Ventura declined the addition of an extra year on his deal this winter.
“I was the same way as a player,” Ventura said. “I’ll worry about it at the end of it. For them, I want them to think that in two years I’m still the right guy for the job. It wasn’t anything that was a big deal so I’m not holding out for anything or disappointed in not wanting to stay here. I think at the end of that, that’s when you talk about it. I’m not worried about trying to extend anything right now. I’m more worried with this team in this spring training than I’m worried about 2015.”
Hahn confirmed the offer was made over the phone as he and Ventura -- who finished third in the 2012 American League manager of the year vote -- discussed the structure of coaches’ deals. Calling Ventura an exception, Hahn said he appreciates how the former third baseman wants to ensure he’s the right fit down the road.
“His focus isn’t on at 2015 at this time, his focus is on now,” Hahn said. “And he’s been around long enough to realize that all of us in these positions have a certain shelf life and he just wants to make sure that when the time comes to sign the extension that he’s confident he’s the right guy at that time. It’s really just a testament to him, how special he is in terms of his approach to this position and his focus on the job at hand. He’s the exception and not the rule in this game.”
Hahn also said Ventura’s move shouldn’t be seen as him not having a desire to manage or that he wants to move on from the White Sox.
“If that’s the vibe that people might be getting that’s inaccurate,” Hahn said. “My hope is that Robin’s here for a long, long time. You can’t obviously foresee the future, but I suspect when the time comes that there is a new manager it’s that Robin decided personally he’s not wanting to continue or he’s not the right guy or the best guy to lead the White Sox at that time. My hope is that’s far into the future.”