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In Praise of Rick Renteria and Other Bullets

Chicago Cubs News

rick renteria cubs speakWe took the kids trick-or-treating last night (it was on the 30th in our city), which was a blast. The Little Girl made for a magnificent Rapunzel and The Little Boy had the perfect ambling walk to pull off Frankenstein’s monster. The only problem was that they dealt with a little shyness at the first few houses and declined treats. No, the shyness, itself, wasn’t a problem – they quickly hit their stride and were snagging candy like pros. The problem was that the first few houses were the only ones with full-size candy bars. And I totally would have poached those.


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  • Sahadev Sharma takes a long look at Rick Renteria’s first year in Chicago, noting the pros (development, clubhouse environment, etc.) and cons (bullpen usage, lineup construction, bunting, etc.). On the balance, Sharma seems to come out how most of us have: given what he was supposed to do, and the roster he had, Renteria was a very successful manager. Even the cons feel a little nitpicky at this point, given some of the directives he was undoubtedly getting from the front office (they have said, for example, that various pitchers were working with certain restrictions that could have forced Renteria’s hand from time to time in ways that otherwise looked off). Much of our in-game grouses also could have been corrected in the offseason, and it’s not like Renteria had shown any kind of proclivity to be inflexible and uninterested in improving. Sharma’s piece pretty much sums up why this week has been tricky: yes, I’m totally on board with the Cubs going after Joe Maddon, but I think they would have been in good hands with Rick Renteria.
  • Whatever happens, I hope all other teams in baseball recognize that Renteria did good work in his big league managerial gig, and the interest in him next year should be at least as strong as it was when he was interviewing with teams left and right last offseason.
  • How about this for the death of baseball as a national thing:

  • The Fielding Bible award winners are out – the best defensive players, and usually a pretty fair take – but there are no Cubs. As discussed in the Gold Glove finalists piece, Anthony Rizzo is really the only guy with an argument on the Cubs, but Adrian Gonzalez saved more runs.
  • In case you were wondering, if Alex Gordon had been sent on that single-and-an-error with two outs in the bottom of the 9th of the final World Series game … he probably would have been out by a mile.

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  • If you’re waiting on Joe Maddon news, the last update yesterday was that an announcement could come today. I’ll keep you posted.

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Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation.