Ricky Speaks: Clinching a playoff spot
Today's clinch of a playoff spot by the Chicago White Sox brought an uncommonly emotional manager Ricky Renteria to the postgame Zoom room.
"I take a lot of joy in [clinching the playoffs]. I take joy in their victories every single day," Renteria said, his voice cracking a little. "It’s an emotional day for everyone, all the way around. But we're not done. I’m smiling ear-to-ear underneath the mask. But we can’t lay on our laurels, we gotta continue to play, and play well."
To no one's surprise, Renteria lauded the effort of unofficial White Sox captain José Abreu for spurring on the seventh-inning rally that clinched the postseason.
"Trust me, the whole game, we were trying to figure out how to put some points on the board," he said. "Pito beating that ball out was awesome. Everybody was kind of feeling it. It’s a credit to those guys, they deserve it."
Renteria's generosity toward Abreu didn't stop there.
"I probably feel as good for him as you guys to do for him," Renteria said. "He is a big part of who we are. I'm thankful he’s a big part of the White Sox. If there’s anyone in the room I’m really, really happy for, it’s Pito. He represents the White Sox in the best possible way you can represent the White Sox."
And Renteria saved some love for White Sox fans, as well.
"The challenge is not being able to embrace the fans," he said. "They are the reason any team exists; everybody knows that. This is for them, too. I hope they’re enjoying it more than us. They’ve been going through a tough time over the past few years."
Ricky Renteria video courtesy of the Chicago White Sox.