MLB Betting: White Sox Signaling a Rebuild With New Manager Rick Renteria

Mark Lathrop

Sunday, October 9, 2016 12:45 AM UTC

Sunday, Oct. 9, 2016 12:45 AM UTC

Our MLB futures expert discusses the naming of Rick Renteria as the new White Sox Manager, and how it could affect futures markets MLB odds for the team.


The Chicago White Sox just finished an uninspiring 78-84 campaign which ended with their manager, Robin Ventura, stepping down from the position. The White Sox could never get going on the road, finishing the year at 33-48 away from U.S. Cellular, which was the difference between them making or missing the playoffs.

Projected to be about .500 on the season by my futures sabermetrics method, the correct MLB pick was to take the under on their 81.5 season win total prop. I passed because of how close the model was to the line given, but the projected weakness of the White Sox did come true. The White Sox were projected to have the 27th ranked offense in all of the baseball league according to projected WAR, and they finished 2016 ranked 22nd in the league.


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In comes new manager, Rick Renteria, who was named after serving as the White Sox bench coach this year. Respected in the clubhouse, Renteria is a video buff who is bilingual in English and Spanish. That was definitely a plus for him when he coached in the San Diego Padres system from 2003 until 2013. Renteria managed the Cubs to their 73-69 campaign in 2014, an admittedly rebuilding club where the talent hadn’t reached its full potential yet. He was let go to make room for Joe Maddon, and the rest is history for the Cubs as we all know. Not exactly a situation we can bring fault to Renteria on.

The fact that Renteria has such extensive experience in rebuilding teams and developing talent is a slight tip of the hat for the immediate future of the franchise and their MLB odds. With Detroit and Cleveland seemingly with a few year’s window each of dominant play, this could be time to tear everything apart with eyes on a few years from now. That could end up being a time frame when Detroit’s offense finally falls off of a cliff, or Cleveland’s excellent young starting rotation ends up getting signed by teams like the Yankees for huge contracts that they can’t compete with.

But even if a rebuilding year is in the cards consider this; that 2014 Chicago Cubs team had a season win prop of O/U 70 games coming into Renteria’s first year. Renteria was able to exceed that market by 3 games. I’d watch the line as it comes in closely if the futures market prices in a rebuilding year for the White Sox. I will be especially keen on handicapping the White Sox if they bring in more Latino talent that could be helped by Renteria’s approach, and will look to the international draft for clues in that department. 


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