Sportress of Blogitude

Rick Renteria rails against analytics-based criticism

Rick Renteria forcefully defended himself this week against analytics-driven criticism of his in-game decision-making, and the Chicago White Sox manager made it clear that the sabermetrics crowd won’t inspire him to change his style.

Ahead of Tuesday’s 14-4 loss to the Minnesota Twins, Renteria railed against how data-driven critics have been calling into question some of his managerial moves.

“I don’t discount numbers. Never have, never will,” Renteria said, via the Chicago Sun-Times. “But I’m a balance guy. I’m not going to appeal to the sabermetrician on a daily basis. Never will. Never want to. Not my intent. If they don’t like it, I don’t really give a s—.”

While insisting the White Sox rely upon analytics and data for things like deciding on when to shift, filling out lineups and setting up pitching matchups, Renteria says he goes with his gut when making in-game calls.

“Most people want to go through just statistically based decisions,” Renteria said. “OK, I’m not that guy. I trust myself and the things I do. I think there’s a balance…

“I do things because I think it’s the right thing for me to do. I know everybody has their opinion. Maybe it puts me on the outs. That’s fine. But I’m going to do what I think I need to do with the guys I have.”

There is definitely a new-school vs. old-school schism in baseball when it comes to determining the extent in which analytics and the like should be utilized. It’s clear which side of the debate Renteria lands on.

While it’s obvious which direction baseball is currently headed, Renteria clearly embraces a less-is-more ideology when it comes to data, and it does not look like he is planning on changing his ways anytime soon.