The positive outlook of Rick Renteria is one of the reasons he got the Cubs managerial job, but at least one Cubs fan is worried he won't stay that way for long.
A concerned Cubs fan voiced that worry to Cubs ownership Saturday during a question-and-answer session at the Cubs Convention.
"Last night I met Rick Renteria, and I'm very impressed with him. His demeanor was wonderful. And I just hope that we can hurry it up and put some players on our field so that he doesn't get broken down," she said. "Right now he's up, but then all of a sudden they start going down. And I don't want that to happen to him."
Demeanor notwithstanding, the concern isn't without precedent. Managers such as Dusty Baker and Lou Piniella came to the North Side upbeat and initially found great success only to leave several years later frustrated by losing teams. The man Renteria replaced, Dale Sveum, frequently spoke of the not-so-fun aspects of losing, which he witnessed often in his two seasons at the helm.
Jeff Samardzija grew up in the Chicago area and has played under Piniella, Mike Quade and Sveum. He knows what it takes to be the Cubs' skipper.
"I think as manager of the Cubs you need to have a lot of energy, you need to be positive. Especially in the situation we are now as a team, we're kind of on the up and coming," the pitcher said in an interview with CSN's Kelly Crull at the Cubs Convention. "There's a lot of little lumps that you have to fight through, and so it takes a very patient man and a happy man to kind of just keep it going."
But, regardless of that fan's concern, the Cubs themselves feel Renteria's positive attitude is a huge benefit to the team.
"Someone that's positive in your ear all day is someone that you can rally behind and start treating your teammates better as well because you'll want to be more like him," second baseman Darwin Barney told Crull at the Cubs Convention. "I think he's the right guy for the job right now."