SURPRISE, Ariz. -- White Sox manager Rick Renteria has been pleased with how critical Yoan Moncada has been of himself this spring, a good trait for a 21-year-old who's been able to tune out the hype surrounding him.
Moncada, who Baseball America ranked as 2017's No. 2 prospect behind Boston Red Sox outfielder Andrew Benintendi, has been "very tough of himself" this spring, according to Renteria.
"That means that he cares," Renteria said. "That's how it benefits a younger player, when they're self-critical and they're self-analyzing and looking at things, hopefully from a realistic perspective.
"The thing we have to do is make sure that it is realistic, that they're not being overly aggressive in attacking themselves. I'd rather have someone who is a little bit more critical instead of accepting everything being what it is."
Renteria's comments dive a little more into why he feels Moncada is taking the right approach to things this spring, even as the second baseman has struggled at the plate (.217/.357/.348, 9 K's in 23 ABs) and in the field (four errors). Moncada's two-run double in the ninth inning Friday against the Milwaukee Brewers, though, was a bright spot.
"He's not a panicky type hitter," Renteria said. "As he continues to play and garner more experience, the things he's capable of doing will come to the surface."
Say it ain't so
Rangers minor league outfielder Joe Jackson entered Texas' 5-1 win over the White Sox on Saturday at Surprise Stadium as a pinch runner in the eighth inning for designated hitter James Loney. Normally, this would be a mundane update from a preseason exhibition game, but…
Jackson is the great-great-great nephew of Shoeless Joe Jackson, the legendary White Sox outfielder who was banned from baseball for his role in the 1919 Black Sox scandal.
Other notes from Rangers 5, White Sox 1:
-- With James Shields starting a simulated game at Camelback Ranch, Rule 5 pick Dylan Covey started the White Sox Cactus League game against Texas. His bid for a spot in the White Sox rotation was dinged, though, with the right-hander allowed three runs on five hits with one walk and two strikeouts in 2 2/3 innings against the Rangers. The 25-year-old Covey, who was plucked from the Oakland Athletics and hasn't pitched above Double-A, could still have a shot at earning a spot in the White Sox bullpen with a strong spring, though his ERA sits at 6.43 now.
-- Not a whole lot of action happened otherwise in Surprise with plenty of regulars given Saturday off. Jose Abreu doubled to center in the first inning and Tyler Saladino collected a pair of hits, while right-hander Chris Beck struck out four over two perfect innings in relief.
-- Carlos Rodon offered a pretty good anecdote about Jose Quintana Saturday morning that sums up who Quintana is pretty well:
"We played catch last year almost every day," Rodon said. "I'm pretty competitive. Every time he's hitting me in the chest. Me, I'm over here (Rodon raised his arm over his head and to the side). He's going to run and get the ball, and I'm like screw this. I'm going to try and beat him.
"Every time he hit my chest I tried to throw it right back at his chest. It was like competitiveness when we were throwing and it made me better. Just watching him throw, changeup, everything, how compact he is. It helped me mechanically. (It) painted a picture for me."