Ozzie Guillen was disappointed when White Sox chairman Jerry Reinsforf called the day Rick Renteria was fired, disappointed because Reinsdorf wasn’t going to name him the new field boss entrusted to take a talented team to a championship.
But the feeling didn’t last. When Tony La Russa was named manager, Guillen felt relieved. In his view, the Sox hired the best man available, even better than him — and Guillen led the Sox to their only World Series title in Reinsdorf’s tenure.
That opinion, of course, puts Guillen, who played for La Russa as a rookie in 1984, in the minority. Sox fans, employees and media largely pushed back, citing La Russa’s 76 years and absence from managing since 2011, and throwing their hands up against what looked to many like a hire smacking of cronyism because of La Russa’s friendship with Reinsforf.
When it became known that La Russa was hired a day after charges had been brought against him for a second DUI, stemming from an arrest in February the Sox said they knew about, the pushback intensified. But it did nothing to make Guillen waver from his original stance about the third-winningest manager of all time with three World Series rings.
“It’s still a great hire,” Guillen said Thursday. “I know exactly what the White Sox need, I know the kind of players they have. I watched those guys every inning, every pitch this season. We need…