Interview with Storm manager Rick Renteria

Rick Renteria has led his team to the California League playoffs by winning the first half. His managing technique will vary from game-to-game and player-to-player and he stresses execution, knowing it is his job to help these Padres' prospects reach the Major Leagues.

Can you give us an idea of how you develop a prospect not only through winning but preparing him for the future as a High-A player?

Rick Renteria: As an example, if you have a hitter that batted .100 after week one of the season and he comes up with the bases loaded – and you have a .400 hitter on the bench after one week, the thinking is ‘he has a .400 hitter on the bench'. But we are taking an opportunity from that individual. If he is up there in the same situation two weeks later, we haven't given him an opportunity to build on the failure or success. What will that do for his confidence?

It is a form of developing his skills.

If that player swings and misses both times, how do you help him regain that edge of confidence?

Rick Renteria: You have to use it to your advantage. You have heard people say that player has always been successful and has never experienced failure. That is a catch-22.

If you are only thinking of winning (games), you limit your opportunities to fail. You have to build on failure.

Obviously the meaning of the word manager is all encompassing but one of the primary functions has to be knowing who to push, what buttons get them going, and when to simply back off. How delicate is that balance as their mentor and preparing them for the Big Leagues?

Rick Renteria: It is a fine line and must be examined on an individual basis. Most people have the physical talents that either flourish or diminish. We try to give them the tools to help them succeed.

You have to know who to push, who to leave alone and who needs a pat on the back every once in a while. They all have different personalities and it is our job to figure out what works best.

You have to compromise a place to be based on that individuals makeup.

You don't expect to turn a Volkswagen into a Porsche.

What are you ultimately trying to get these prospects to understand to better prepare them for the future?

Rick Renteria: We stress the ability to execute in different situations. The outcome, once the mental part is taken care of, has to do with physical talents and staying with themselves. They all have the talent.

Were you showing your guys up a little bit in the cages the other day when you launched three over the fence?

Rick Renteria: No, no, no. . .I don't get a chance to (hit) very often. . .

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