Williams: No thought of dismissing Ventura

White Sox executive VP offers support for manager after team's start

Williams: No thought of dismissing Ventura

CHICAGO -- Ken Williams strongly backed Robin Ventura and his entire coaching staff during a conversation with MLB.com on Wednesday without even having to provide the dreaded vote of confidence.

"In order for anything, any personnel decision to happen around here, whether it be player-wise or staff-wise, [White Sox general manager] Rick [Hahn] has to gather his thoughts for his staff and we have to have a conversation about it," said Williams, the team's executive vice president. "We've had a lot of conversations about a lot of things obviously here in the first few weeks.

"Not a single one of them have been with regards to a staff change. These guys have busted their tails in every way shape and form to get these guys off to a good start."

All of that hard work and best intentions from Ventura and his staff translated into a 9-14 start entering Wednesday, including an 0-5 road trip to Baltimore and Minnesota. That slow opening amid lofty preseason expectations put Ventura on the hot seat in the court of public opinion.

That same court doesn't appear to be in session in regard to Ventura's ability for Williams or the White Sox front office.

"He hasn't gotten anything but better," Williams added emphatically of the man he hired after the 2011 campaign.

Ventura took over as White Sox manager moving into the 2012 season, and the White Sox sat atop the American League Central for 117 days in his inaugural year. They had a three-game lead as late as Sept. 18, only to lose 10 of the next 12 and fall out of contention.

As for those who placed that particular collapse on Ventura, who agreed to a multiyear extension prior to the 2014 season, Williams also had a response.

"I don't remember him throwing a pitch or striking out," Williams said with a wry smile. "I'll have to go back and look at the records.

"You know what's interesting to hear? It's all this talk about him not being equipped to manage a big league club, when if you turn back the clock to 2012, if not for the last two or three weeks, he would have won the Manager of the Year Award."

Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, and follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.