CHICAGO — Former All-Star third baseman Robin Ventura is replacing the fiery Ozzie Guillen as manager of the Chicago White Sox.
Ventura agreed to a multiyear deal on Thursday.
A longtime star with the White Sox, Ventura was hired by the club last June as a special adviser to director of player development Buddy Bell. Ventura is the 39th White Sox manager overall, including 17 who played for the team.
When General Manager Ken Williams asked whether he would be interested in replacing Guillen, Ventura admitted he was surprised. Especially since he hadn't managed previously.
But after a couple of days to think about it, he knew it was a move he wanted to make.
"I think there is a challenge there, getting back into the game," he said.
"I do have a passion for it. I do have a passion for this team and this city. I'm not one to really back away from a lot of things."
Guillen was released from his contract with one year remaining after eight seasons with the White Sox and immediately was hired by the Florida Marlins as their manager.
The 44-year-old Ventura played for a host of managers who could influence his style — Jeff Torborg, Gene Lamont, Jerry Manuel, Bobby Valentine, Joe Torre and Jim Tracy.
"I ran the gamut on different styles and smart baseball men," he said. His style? Yet to be determined. He said he wants players who care and are accountable.
'Dream matchup' in NLDS
PHILADELPHIA — Roy Halladay and Chris Carpenter grew up together with the Toronto Blue Jays, and the BFFs have spent plenty of time competing on golf courses and fishing boats.
The stakes will be much higher when the All-Stars go head-to-head on a mound for the first time Friday night.
It'll be Halladay vs. Carpenter in Game 5 with a berth in the NL championship series on the line for the Philadelphia Phillies and St. Louis Cardinals.
"You definitely look forward to it," Halladay said Thursday. "Not only is Chris a good pitcher, but obviously a good friend. We've talked about this scenario. I think it's something we're both looking forward to. It's going to be a challenge."
This is a "dream matchup," Cardinals Manager Tony La Russa said.