Reading Room: Robin Ventura reaction

<a href="http://msn.foxsports.com/video?vid=0a26411f-4d55-4204-88f8-550d3266034f" mce_href="http://msn.foxsports.com/video?vid=0a26411f-4d55-4204-88f8-550d3266034f" target="_new" title=""&amp;amp;amp;gt;Rosenthal: ChiSox hire Ventura&amp;amp;amp;lt;/a&amp;amp;amp;gt;

Kenny Williams has truly outdone himself, for he established the grounds for a rumor so unfathomable that Ken Rosenthal couldn't find a way to put it out there.

Since we've spent the first 12 hours of Robin Ventura's still-unofficial managerial career being skeptical, let's start out with a healthy dose of optimism, provided by Chuck Garfien and Buddy Bell, by way of Scott Merkin.

Hey, Brent Morel is also down with this move, because he doesn't have to go far to look for a mentor. He would probably be OK with it even if he didn't play third, though, is my guess.

 

This kind of shows you how hard it is to really buy into the hire, because the headline of this Scott Miller column changed...

...when Rob Neyer wrote about it, the headline on the Miller story called it "smart, innovative." So somebody felt compelled to ratchet down the expectations.

Nice job by Jon Greenberg in tracking down the guy for whom Ventura coached at the California high school. Later on, he thinks this might be a sign that Williams might be ready for more headline-grabbing news.

Mark Gonzales says along with Don Cooper and Harold Baines, Ventura will retain bullpen coach Juan Nieves and bullpen catcher Mark Salas. Jeff Cox was given permission to talk to other teams, so he'll likely be replaced, and Ventura will need to name a bench coach and hitting coach as well. Gonzales suggests Jeff Manto or Tim Laker as possibilities to take Greg Walker's place.

During the press conference, it sounded like Williams leaked that Bell would serve as Ventura's bench coach. He quickly amended his statement, saying Bell would be available for consult as a member of the organization.

Later in the conference, he said that Ventura has a bench coach in mind, and the club needs to seek permission to talk to him. That's a pretty convincing cover, but maybe it's more smokescreen. We can wait a few days to find out.

Frank Thomas wants to be the hitting coach pretty badly, but Williams seems to be pointing in the direction of Laker or Manto by saying, "We are probably going to stay within the organization."

Carl draws Ventura for the first time. I wonder if he's going to be a tough subject for caricaturization, but maybe Carl will take matters into his own hands.

J.J. thinks the biggest concern about Ventura managing is that he'll be blamed for much more than he's responsible for, just because nobody knows what he's like as a manager.

My first link to Fornelli, who wonders if Williams was waiting for Terry Francona to officially be ruled out (or rule himself out) before pursuing Ventura.

Unlike Greenberg, James is taking this as a sign that the Sox are going to take it slow in 2012, for better or for worse.

'Duk is equally skeptical that the Sox plan to make a run at the AL Central next year, considering this a money-saving move that doesn't do much to gain the fans' trust.

Count Mike as another guy who was reminded of the Bulls hiring Vinny Del Negro.

Kevin Goldstein is no fun.

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