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Last-place White Sox extend manager Ventura's contract

Chicago White Sox manager Robin Ventura looks on from the dugout during their MLB Cactus League spring training baseball game against the Mi
Chicago White Sox manager Robin Ventura looks on from the dugout during their MLB Cactus League spring training baseball game against the Mi

(Reuters) - Despite a last-place finish in 2013, the Chicago White Sox agreed to a multiyear contract extension with manager Robin Ventura on Friday.

The White Sox fell to the American League Central cellar last season with a 63-99 record, 30 games behind the division-winning Detroit Tigers.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Ventura's original three-year deal, signed after the 2011 campaign, was set to expire at the end of the 2014 season.

General manager Rick Hahn said White Sox management reached their decision after several talks on team objectives with Ventura.

"I have great confidence that Robin's leadership and direction will help us reach our goals, and there was never really any question in our minds as to who we wanted in the White Sox dugout now and into the future," Hahn said in a statement.

The 46-year-old Ventura, who played 16 seasons in the major leagues, guided the White Sox to an 85-77 record and second place in the division in his rookie campaign.

"You go through a season like last year, and that's what really solidified it for me," Ventura told local radio. "It's as hard as anything player-wise I ever went through.

"You get through it and you do realize you love this job and what it entails. The competitive part of it is you want to see it turn around. I think that's another part for me. I want to be here for the foreseeable future."

Chicago has been busy in the off-season, adding a young crop of offensive players in Cuban first baseman Jose Abreu, outfielder Adam Eaton and third baseman Matt Davidson.

(Reporting by Larry Fine in New York, Editing by Gene Cherry)

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