CHICAGO -- At first glance, losing a third-base coach who hasn’t even been on the big-league staff for a regular-season game wouldn’t seem like a big deal for the Chicago White Sox.
With news that Joe McEwing has already interviewed for the St. Louis Cardinals' vacant manager spot, the White Sox would not only be going back to the drawing board to fill a coaching staff vacancy, they would be required to replace a key component for the 2012 season.
Known for high energy that earned McEwing the nickname “Super Joe,” the former Triple-A Charlotte manager was expected to have an important role toward realizing the vision of new manager Robin Ventura.
Ask those who have played for McEwing and they will describe a teacher with complete passion for the game, who can not only be a joy to play for but can also be a stern disciplinarian when he has to. It’s a fine line to walk, but McEwing pulls it off as evidence from the fact that it’s impossible to find somebody with a bad word to say about the former major leaguer.
Down the road, though, McEwing could mean so much more to the White Sox. He could be a manager in waiting beyond the Ventura years.
For now, all that is in jeopardy as McEwing and the White Sox await the Cardinals’ decision. McEwing is one of two Cardinals manager candidates to be interviewed (Triple-A Memphis manager Chris Maloney is the other) with more to come. Former Cubs standout Ryne Sandberg will reportedly get an interview as well.
The White Sox could know within the week where they stand with their new third-base coach.