Tag Archives: Ben Cherington

See Ya Bobby!

Well that was fast. (Patrick Semanski/AP)

If has happened. Not 24 hours after wrapping up the worst Red Sox season since 1965 the Boston Red Sox got rid of Bobby Valentine as manager. In all honesty this is probably the most excited I have been about anything related to the Red Sox since Will Middlebrooks got called up and started raking. I have been against Bobby V’s hiring since last season when he was just a name being tossed around. I never thought he made sense for this team and this season illustrated that in spades.

He clashed with one of the most beloved players on the team and even though Middlebrooks made the Youkilis trade more palatable you can’t tell me that Valentine’s less than healthy relationship with him had no hand in that move. It wasn’t just Youkilis that didn’t like playing for him. I honestly don’t know if there was one player who did. Alfredo Aceves imploded this season and part of it was an obvious disdain for Bobby V. Pedroia seemed to be warming to him slightly but that never seemed like the cribbage-playing marriage he had with Francona.  Didn’t hear a whole lot of talk from Big Papi about how awesome it was to play for him. He quite often down the stretch let Clay Bucholz and Jon Lester throw 783412 pitches despite the pair struggling to get outs into the fifth inning. Plus it is now being reported that this dislike from the players started in spring training when he “loudly questioned the aptitude” of shortstop Mikes Aviles.

Now as every Sox fan knows when someone leaves town or gets run out like Bobby V, the Boston media and the Red Sox front office put out smear campaigns that would put Romney attack ads on Obama look like glowing endorsements. There are going to be a number of bogus stories that come out all offseason about how Bobby V was shooting heroin in the clubhouse, was clubbing baby seals in his free time and (worst of all) purposely put out bad lineup cards. This whole pathetic season was not all on him. He can’t play the games. He also didn’t make all the terrible front office decisions and seemingly stop caring about baseball. John Henry, Larry Lucchino and Ben Cherington aren’t going to be fired but they deserve as much if not more of the blame here and the pressure is now squarely on them to turn things around. If another manager comes in and fails it’s suddenly going to look a lot more like there is something wrong with the organization and not the manager.

Yet Bobby never made sense in Boston. He just didn’t. And the way he handled this terrible season was certainly no indication that it was just because of the losses. It wasn’t just the players though as he called out coaches below him for “undermining” him. That’s right Bobby. Alex Ochoa and Dave Madagan want to have the team do terribly because there’s no possible way they could lose their jobs with bad seasons. As Curt Schilling said, in one of the most candid moments I have ever seen from an analyst, the move was gutless.

The 2012 Red Sox became exactly what I was afraid they would become under Bobby V; a circus. Now Valentine can take his clown car and the tents and head back to Japan or ESPN or wherever. Would it be too much to ask for one last favor though? Here’s hoping he takes Dice-K with him.

-Phil

How do you feel about Bobby V leaving? Who is really to blame for the Red Sox season? Let us know on Twitter (@seeuinoctober) or in the comments.

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Say It Ain’t So

Leave this s--- eating grin on Baseball Tonight.

I hate everything that has to do with the word Valentine. The ridiculous holiday that is a ploy to make people not hate February. (Call me a cynic but come on that’s what it is. If you love your significant other why do you need a calendar to tell you when to make it known?) The horrendous 2001 Jamie Blanks film. The Swedish metal band Bullet for My Valentine. Basically anything with that word really isn’t something I have any positive associations with.

But they all pale in comparison to how much I do not want Bobby Valentine to be the next manager of the Boston Red Sox. Unfortunately I have no pull within the Red Sox organization and they have met or will meet with Bobby V today about the still open managerial position.

Don’t get me wrong I’m sure Valentine is a nice guy and he definitely has managerial experience but that isn’t going to cut it for me. How I see it the Sox are just going after a ‘big name’. Well that strategy hasn’t worked recently in acquiring players (looking at you Crawford and Lackey) so why is it going to work picking the guy that has to right this sinking ship?

Valentine hasn’t managed in the majors since 2002 when he was skipper of the New York Mets. He has a mediocre track record as a manager with a lifetime winning percentage of .510 with two playoff appearances in 15 major league seasons. Now he did have great success overseas apparently in the Japanese Pacific League, but managing for one of the premier baseball teams not just in the Northeast but the World is an entirely different beast. Plus I remeber a certain pitcher who was legendary in Japan. So legendary they made up a mystical pitch that he threw. I remeber the Red Sox forking over $50 million just to talk with this pitcher. Then I remeber this pitcher being run out of town this past season. I didn’t realize the pitches thrown in batting practice were ‘legendary’ in Japan.

In Japan Valentine didn’t have the pressure he will have taking over this Sox team. Especially a team that is supposed to contend for championships every year (At least that’s what the payroll says).  Speaking of payroll isn’t Valentine going to cost a hell of a lot? He is currently working as an analyst for ESPN where I’m sure he is making a decent living. This is not to say the Sox should hire the cheapest option but the most expensive one doesn’t seem to make sense either. His work at ESPN is part of the reason I have grown such a loathsome view of Bobby V. He has clearly been aiming to get back into managing with how he just continually points out the positives in every thing and never criticizes any player/coach/executive/concession worker. If Jered Weaver has given up three runs in the first inning and then strikes out the last batter don’t tell me he’s settling in. If Carl Crawford is still batting .250 in September don’t tell me he’s still working hard and he’s going to turn it around this season.

The last time the Sox went to hire a new coach they brought in a relatively unknown bench coach from Philly. Then they went on to win two World Series and if it wasn’t for last September he would still be managing here. Why do we want to bring in a man who has only had a connection to Major League Baseball from the press box instead of someone who has been in Major League Baseball this whole time. I don’t know who that is but it’s not Bobby V. Please Mr. Cherington you have been off to such a good start (John Lackey out for a year? Yes please!) don’t mess up by being wowed by a flashy name.

-Phil

Are you completely ill informed and think Bobby V should be hired as Red Sox manager? Let me know via Twitter or in the comments.

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The Hot Stove Percolates

Now Playing at GM for the Boston Red Sox: Ben Cherington (Photo by: Matt Sotne)

The Texas Rangers are poised to win their first World Series championship as they take a 3-2 lead into St. Louis tonight. With the Series winding down the hot stove of off season moves inevitably begins to heat up. The formalities between the Cubs and Theo Epstien have been finalized including a farewell note published in the Boston Globe Op Ed section. It has been one of the classier exits in sports history as Epstien both praised the Cubs for their rich history and unique status and expressed sincere gratitude to Red Sox nation for the past decade. In Boston his replacement will be Ben Cheringtion, who has worked with Epstien and in the Red Sox front office.

Cherington’s first order of business will be finding a new manager to replace Terry Francona. He will be looking for a manager with a strong presence to combat the issues of a divided clubhouse, which may or may not have led to the September collapse. One of the most visible players in the September collapse

Is that really gatorade in that bottle? (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

was John Lackey. He was involved with the beer, fried chicken and video game scandal and, unlike Jon Lester and to some extent Josh Beckett, pitched horribly all season. What’s the solution for a guy who has a big contract for the next three seasons? Shut him down. Cherington announced that Lackey will miss the entire 2012 season after Tommy John surgery. This will lighten the new GM’s load going into the season as he loses one major distraction. Also after Lackey recovers the Red Sox will have a pitcher, who was at one time a quality starter in a playoff rotation, under contract for two more years. A bounce back is obviously the best case scenario. In the meantime there isn’t a great market for starting pitching this off season and, outside of Philadelphia, all the big players will be looking to add to their rotation.

The biggest possible free agent will be Yankees’ ace CC Sabathia. Currently Brian Cashman is going through contract negotiations with the organization, although it seems to be a question of numbers and not whether he will stay. Sabathia will be his top priority and with Lackey out for the season, the Red Sox maybe his top competitors. According to a New York Post report, the Yankees are currently preparing an offer, or a series of offers, intended to retain Sabathia before his opt-out date arrives. Their idea consists of a five- or six-year deal with a raise over Sabathia’s current $23 million annual salary. Whoever signs the hefty lefty will make him the highest paid pitcher in baseball. Whoever fails to sign Sabathia will be left with CJ Wilson, Roy Oswalt and Mark Buehrle as potential free agents. With disappointing ends to both the Yankees and Red Sox’s seasons this will be an exciting off season.

-Erik

What moves would you like to see the Yanks/Sox make? Let us know via our twitter (@seeuinoctober) or leave us a comment.

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