McEwing downplays managerial rumors

McEwing downplays managerial rumors

CHICAGO -- Joe McEwing has heard the rumors attaching his name to the Arizona managerial position if Kirk Gibson is not retained past this season. That connection comes from McEwing being respected throughout the game and having strong ties to Arizona chief baseball officer Tony La Russa from the two years he played for him in St. Louis.

But McEwing stands as the third-base coach for the White Sox and isn't campaigning or looking for another job.

"I consider myself a loyal individual and my loyalty is here," McEwing told MLB.com prior to Wednesday's contest with the Indians. "The White Sox have given me an outstanding opportunity, to start coaching here and in the Minor League system, and [White Sox manager] Robin [Ventura] brought me in at the big league level and I couldn't be more thankful for that opportunity.

"People have talked about [Arizona]. But, you know, rumors are rumors and you can't control the rumors and my thoughts and focus are here. I'm trying to help us win here and continue an outstanding thing we've got going on here."

Shortly after being named the team's third-base coach in the 2011 offseason, McEwing interviewed for the Cardinals' managerial position vacated by La Russa. McEwing enjoyed the interview process, but the 41-year-old is in no rush to run his own team, even if it possibly meant working with La Russa.

"He's a tremendous baseball mind," said McEwing of La Russa. "He's an individual I learned a lot from as a player and he's where he belongs -- in baseball. Any part in this game that he's attached to, it's better for it: Whether it be on the field, in the Commissioner's Office, in the front office. The game is in a better spot because he's a tremendous baseball mind and an old-school mind."

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.