Hahn feels White Sox fanbase's frustration

Hahn feels White Sox fanbase's frustration

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Back in early September, general manager Rick Hahn was asked a question about how the 2015 White Sox season affected him personally.

Hahn smiled a somewhat exasperated smile as he sat in the dugout, and he said it was a question better answered at the end of the campaign.

After the South Siders' season ended last Sunday, Hahn did provide some personal insight into this year during his season-ending session with the media on Friday. But he gave a deeper explanation in a talk with MLB.com on Thursday at Camelback Ranch.

Hahn was frustrated and disappointed over his team's 76-86 performance.

"I'm not going to wallow in this disappointment for too long," Hahn said prior to an instructional league contest with the Dodgers. "There are moves to be made to help get us back to where we want to be, and that's playing next October.

"Look, there's a level of disappointment any time you are not playing in October. It's difficult to stomach, and quite frankly, I take it extremely personally and I feel a great deal of responsibility. It's a lousy feeling. I don't think I'm abnormal from ultimately any of the other 29 GMs that don't wind up winning the final game of the year. But it's something you have to deal with and get through."

On the plus side for Hahn, executive vice president Ken Williams and the White Sox front office, they were able to transition into scouting and player development meetings that were completed Thursday in Glendale, which also included pitching coach Don Cooper and hitting coach Todd Steverson. There's instructional league action to give the White Sox a look at potential help down the line, not to mention the first real baseball for some of their international signees such as Fernando Tatis, Jr. and Franklin Reyes.

The plan going into '15 seemed to be executed perfectly by Hahn. The additions of Jeff Samardzija, Melky Cabrera, David Robertson and Adam LaRoche potentially took the White Sox from reshaping to postseason contention, with some pundits making the White Sox their preseason World Series pick.

As Hahn quipped and really warned throughout Spring Training and as far back as SoxFest in late January, teams don't get extra wins for winning the offseason. A high excitement level turned into a high level of anger and frustration coming from the fan base, mirroring that aforementioned feeling talked about by Hahn. The biggest difference between the two is Hahn's power to make moves to turn things around.

"If we entered the year with low expectations and met them, then yeah, there's probably a little less fan frustration or blowback," Hahn said. "But I will take high expectations every year, even if it means when you don't meet them, there are negative repercussions. That's only normal.

"I wish fans weren't feeling disappointed and frustrated, obviously. But the fact that they are feeling the same thing as we are, we get that. I'm also fortunately in the position to do something about it."

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