White Sox

Chris Sale on Robin Ventura: 'We always had the same goal'

Chris Sale on Robin Ventura: 'We always had the same goal'

They may have had their share of heated exchanges, but five-time All-Star Chris Sale said Sunday afternoon he holds Robin Ventura in high regard.

Shortly after Ventura announced he wouldn’t return as White Sox manager in 2017, Sale applauded him for the suggestion that the club might be in need of a new voice after five seasons. While he and Ventura clashed several times over the years, including a July incident that resulted in the ace pitcher’s five-game suspension for insubordination and destruction of team property, Sale said both men wanted the same things.

“We always had the same goal, the same vision, the same passion,” Sale said. “You get a bunch of guys in the same room and the testosterone is pumping. This is a competitive game, sports are competitive. Things happen, but that doesn’t change what I think of him personally. He’s as good as they get.

“If you’re going to make a big change something drastic needs to happen. You can’t do the same things over and over and expect things to change. More than anything, people should look at what he said and respect that. Not all people can stand up in these lights and say that. You have to have respect for him and he’s as good as they get.”

[RELATED: Robin Ventura steps down as White Sox manager]

Following the July incident in which he destroyed throwback jerseys the team was scheduled to wear, Sale criticized Ventura’s handling of the situation in an MLB.com article. When he returned from his suspension, Sale downplayed the notion there was a rift between himself and Ventura and his manager did the same. Ventura said the focus needed to return to the field and never publicly returned fire at Sale.

Recently, Sale thanked Ventura for the opportunity to pitch deep into games late in the season. He followed that by noting that Sunday’s announcement was “tough.”

“He’s as good as they get, really,” Sale said. “Over the last five years he did everything in his power to help us win games, honestly. Obviously it didn’t work out as planned, but he wasn’t exactly given two aces out of the gate. He did the best with what he had and I’m appreciative of that.”

White Sox Talk Podcast: Interview with Hall of Famer Harold Baines

baines_podcast.jpg
NBC Sports Chicago

White Sox Talk Podcast: Interview with Hall of Famer Harold Baines

Chuck Garfien sits down with new Hall of Famer Harold Baines.

First, Chuck, Ryan McGuffey and Chris Kamka share their memories of watching Baines play with the White Sox (1:40). Then, Baines explains why he's always been so soft-spoken (8:45), how he was able to play 22 seasons in the majors (13:00), why he's never spoken to GM Larry Himes for trading him to Texas (15:30), the apology he received from President George W. Bush (16:30), what he thinks about the critics who don't think he should be in the Hall of Fame (18:25), a replay of Baines emotional interview with Chuck about his dad (20:50) and more.

Listen to the full episode in the embedded player below:

White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson discusses inspiring a younger generation of black baseball players, bat flipping and much more on Pull Up Podcast with CJ McCollum

0610_tim_anderson.jpg
USA TODAY

White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson discusses inspiring a younger generation of black baseball players, bat flipping and much more on Pull Up Podcast with CJ McCollum

White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson appeared on Thursday's episode of the Pull Up Podcast hosted by Portland Trail Blazers guard CJ McCollum and ESPN's Jordan Schultz to discuss many things including his MLB career, the charity work he does in the Chicago community and the need more expression and entertainment (overall) in baseball.

McCollum asked Anderson if the sport of baseball has evolved and what he would do to further these developments, based on the idea that the sport has a stigma of being boring, particularly within inner-city and/or largely black communities. Anderson stated, "They should allow players to have more fun.....just allow players to be themselves." 

Anderson discussed how being the only black player on the White Sox—the team that represents the South Side of Chicago—is extremely important to him and how great the White Sox organization has been at giving him every opportunity to be himself and "be comfortable". He expanded on how much he loves MLB life and how he wants to be able to pass on that love for the game to younger generations, especially the youth of the South Side of Chicago.

"I enjoy it [the responsibility of being the lone black player on the White Sox].....a lot of those kids in they area [the South Side], they kinda remind me of myself."

Schultz brought up the criticism of Anderson's bat flipping, asking him why it was so important for him to show that he was enjoying himself, at the expense of breaking one of baseball's "unwritten rules".

Being of a younger generation, Anderson lamented that it was indeed a new day in baseball and doubled down in saying that the simple aspect of having fun needs to be encouraged even more in the sport. 

"You're playing a game that you're failing most of the time and the times that you do succeed they don't want you to enjoy those moments. For me man, y'know, I think that's just a lot of pain showing.....from struggling, that's just that emotion that's coming out man. You know when you finally get to a point where you feel like you breaking through.....those moments that I want to remember and I want people around me to remember. That’s why I play the way that I do.”

Anderson is indeed having the best season of his career so far, with a slash line of .317/.342/.491 entering Friday morning. He is also nine home runs away from matching his season-high of 20 with over the half the season left to go.

With even more of a platform amid his career-year, Anderson has continued his crusade to make baseball fun again and doesn’t plan on changing up the way he plays the game anytime soon.


 

As touched on earlier in this post, Anderson wants to serve as a role model while also showing the youth that it is OK to be yourself as a Major League Baseball player.

In all the camps and baseball clinics that Anderon hosts, he always makes sure to answer every question about his unique experience in the MLB because he understands the value of kids getting to see someone who looks like them succeeding, even more so in a sport where the number black players sits at a mere 7.7% of the entire league

“Everything [is] not always good [for kids in inner-city communities], so I think that understanding that and kinda being a role model and motivating and inspiring those kids that look like me and I look like them, I think it's easier for those kids to look up to me. So that's why I go out and play hard and....enjoy the moment and do those crazy things on the field.....because that's what those kids like."

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the White Sox easily on your device.