McEwing named bench coach amid staff changes

Moves from third base to work alongside new manager Renteria

McEwing named bench coach amid staff changes

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- The 2017 White Sox coaching staff features a slightly new look made up of familiar faces.

Joe McEwing moves from third-base coach to bench coach as part of Rick Renteria's first White Sox staff, after Renteria was named as the franchise's 40th manager on Oct. 3, becoming just the second individual to manage both the Cubs and White Sox. Nick Capra goes from director of player development to third-base coach, and Curt Hasler takes over as bullpen coach, having previously served as the organization's Minor League pitching coordinator.

Renteria has connections throughout baseball, but he explained why he stayed within the organization for the hires on Friday during a conference call.

"After working with these guys and having been by them all year long and them getting to know me and me sharing with them a lot of the things I look for and I like, I became extremely comfortable with them both in their ability to do their job and take on a new responsibility," Renteria said. "Basically just continue to grow as coaches and hopefully those things will pay dividends moving down the road.

"There are a lot of people that I do know. But I did feel extremely comfortable with the guys that have remained."

McEwing held the third-base coach position for five years under former White Sox manager Robin Ventura. He also managed two seasons for Class A Advanced Winston-Salem, one for Triple-A Charlotte and one for the Mesa Solar Sox in the 2011 Arizona Fall League.

"He's a hard worker. He's in there early looking for anything that will give us an edge," Renteria said of McEwing. "His managing experience and coaching experience also allows him an opportunity to be able to serve me well, talk to me.

"It's a good fit. We both are kind of high energy. Joey might be a little higher energy than me, and I didn't think that was possible. He brings a lot to the table."

Capra begins his 22nd season with the White Sox, the last five in charge of the Minor Leagues. Capra spent 2009-11 as the White Sox Minor League field coordinator and posted a 588-595 record as a manager within the system from 1996-2005. He guided Class A Burlington to a Midwest League title in '99 and Class A Kannapolis to the South Atlantic League crown in '05.

Hasler has been part of the organization for the last 25 years and spent six as the Minor League pitching coordinator. The two spent the bulk of September with the big league team, a time when Capra started to feel this opportunity could arrive and gleaned important information about the team.

"We all start in baseball as players and the hope, the expectations are to get to the big leagues," Capra said. "As coaches, it's the same way.

"I'm really pumped about this. After 21 years in player developments, which I cherished and valued every aspect of that time, I've grown and learned a lot from that. I'm going to miss it. But I'm really pumped about this new opportunity."

They join pitching coach Don Cooper, hitting coach Todd Steverson, assistant hitting coach Greg Sparks, first-base coach Daryl Boston and bullpen catcher Mark Salas in completing Renteria's crew. Cooper embarks on his 30th season in the White Sox organization and 15th as the White Sox pitching coach after taking over on July 22, 2002.

Steverson begins his fourth season as hitting coach, with Sparks starting his second as part of the White Sox.

"These guys have a lot of in-depth experience with a lot of the guys that are going to be coming through," said Renteria, focusing primarily on the new additions of Capra and Hasler. "They obviously have a lot of coaching experience."

Scott Merkin has covered the White Sox for MLB.com since 2003. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.