CHICAGO -- White Sox manager Rick Renteria took part in the team's initial meeting with Manny Machado's camp back on Dec. 17 at Guaranteed Rate Field, the Monday following the Winter Meetings in Las Vegas. He hadn't really spoken about that day until Wednesday at a pre-SoxFest event taking place
CHICAGO -- White Sox manager Rick Renteria took part in the team's initial meeting with Manny Machado's camp back on Dec. 17 at Guaranteed Rate Field, the Monday following the Winter Meetings in Las Vegas. He hadn't really spoken about that day until Wednesday at a pre-SoxFest event taking place in the Englewood neighborhood of Chicago.
"Listen, [White Sox general manager] Rick [Hahn] and the front office put a great presentation together for them," Renteria said. "It was very detailed. I would say this: If I was on the other side, I would have been very, very impressed.
"I thought it was a great meeting, great young man. We expressed our interest. We talked about what we are as an organization. And we looked forward. … You just don't know yet where things will fall. I thought it was a very positive meeting for all parties involved."
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Renteria was joined by shortstop Tim Anderson and outfielders Adam Engel and Daniel Palka at the Mitzi Freidheim Englewood Child and Family Center, reading books to a group of 4-year-old and 5-year-old children who didn't really care about Machado's future baseball destination. They were more excited about interacting with the big league individuals, seeing Southpaw up close and taking home White Sox hats and blankets.
Ardent White Sox fans would like the Machado decision to have come about one or two weeks ago, but if it means eventually getting Machado to the South Side, they will patiently wait. Beginning Year 3 of the rebuild, the White Sox certainly are not looking to make mere incremental improvements; they also can wait for a game-changing talent such as Machado or Bryce Harper to make their final call.
There's no sense the White Sox are running out of time, even with pitchers and catchers reporting to Camelback Ranch in Glendale, Ariz., on Feb. 13.
"Once we put our feet on the ground there and start moving forward, everything will be pretty settled. But the game of baseball doesn't necessarily guarantee settled," Renteria said. "There's a lot of action, a lot of movement in the spring, during the season.
"So it's just something we have to deal with on a daily basis. I'm sure that our most important thing is to get these guys working together and trying to put together a good campaign for the coming season.
"He's one of the two premier young players available in the Major Leagues right now," Renteria added of Machado. "So what the dynamics are, why it's not completed yet with anybody, let alone ourselves, you kind of scratch your head a little bit. Everybody is doing their due diligence and trying to get a young man that's extremely talented, probably doing the best they can to get him under best terms."
Players like Anderson and Engel have guarded optimism about the addition of another elite talent, while keeping their main focus on a great young White Sox core developing together.
"Obviously, we don't have much say, and rumors are rumors to us as well," Engel said. "He would make us a better team, so I'm excited to hopefully see him on the South Side."
Added Anderson: "He would play a great role in what we are trying to do as far as winning a championship. He definitely brings that talent. What's wrong with having everybody [on the team] being great?"
Scott Merkin has covered the White Sox for MLB.com since 2003. Follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin and Facebook and listen to his podcast.