NEW YORK — Jacob May is doing his best to relax and not think too much about his 0-for-21 start to the season.
The White Sox rookie tweeted "I embrace it" on Sunday afternoon shortly after the club completed its second straight series victory with a win at Minnesota. May — who has reached base via an April 8 walk — said teammates and coaches have worked with him to relax and not focus on getting his first hit. While he has struggled, the outfielder said he's decided to look upon the stretch as a learning experience as a means to help him stay focused. May is starting and hitting ninth in Monday's series opener against the New York Yankees.
"If you keep looking at it as a negative, then it's going to be a negative," May said. "If you feel like there is no such thing as a negative, you can learn from any experience you are going through. It's going to make me a better person, a better player, a better teammate. It is what it is. I can't change those last at-bats. All I can do is show up today, get my work done and give my best effort. At this point, I'm going to keep attacking it."
May returned to the lineup on Saturday after three days off and has accrued seven hitless at-bats. The three days were planned by manager Rick Renteria to give Leury Garcia an opportunity to establish a rhythm and also to give May a breather. Similar to before, Renteria has let May know of his plan and that he's going to continue to receive chances.
"I know everyone is looking at the outcomes, the results," Renteria said. "The biggest thing I want to make sure is that he knows he's going to be out there. We mixed him in with Leury on this road trip. We'll continue to do that. Try to manage that so he still gets enough at-bats and do the things he needs to do to improve and know he's part of us."
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May has been inundated with support as he struggles. Those teammates reaching out have helped May think about his early issues from a different perspective and slow down the process.
"In the beginning, that's kind of what was going through my head: I just need this first one, I just need this first one," May said. "I've had a lot of guys, teammates, people reaching out to me, telling me to relax and it will happen when it happens. All I can do is coming out here and give my best effort. At the end of the day I'm blessed to even be in this locker room."