12/10 Renteria tidbits
New Cubs manager Rick Renteria met with the media on Tuesday at the Winter Meetings in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. Here are some of the highlights:
* Starlin Castro is an option to be the leadoff man. Renteria wants to address that with the shortstop in person.
“A lot of those conversations I like to have one on one and in person,” Renteria said. “It always comes off better when have face to face conversations with players. They can read my face, and if they think I’m happy about it, not happy about it.”
* On Jeff Samardzija: “Right now, they way I see it and the way he sees it, is he’s a Cub, and we’re going to move forward as Cubs. When I spoke to him he was very excited about the upcoming season. He came off a high strikeout year last year and a lot of innings, and he’s looking to build off that.”
* Renteria happy to have Chris Bosio returning as the pitching coach. Renteria said: “He’s another guy who is part of the kids who have been coming up and it’s nice to have that stability.”
* The Cubs may go to Spring Training and have open competition for the closer’s job. Pedro Strop will get a chance.
* Renteria is working with bench coach Brandon Hyde this week, going over their plans for Spring Training. Renteria and his coaching staff will meet in Mesa this weekend to see the new facility.
— Carrie Muskat