With the Red Sox eliminated from the playoffs after winning the AL East for the second time in two years, it was announced this morning that John Farrell will not be returning to manage the team. So now it’s time for us fans to do one of the things that we do best, talk about whom we would hire to be the next manager of the Red Sox!
It’s very early in the process, but so far some of the names being bandied about include Jason Varitek, Alex Cora, DeMarlo Hale, Brad Ausmus, Ron Gardenhire, Sandy Alomar Jr., Brad Mills, and Gabe Kapler. Gary DiSarcina and Brian Butterfield might also be candidates, but I consider them as the darkest of horses because of their association with Farrell. Dave Dombrowski said in his news conference that they are free to pursue other coaching jobs and that the new manager will have the freedom to bring in his own staff, and that doesn’t bode well for either of them.
What I would like to see in a new manager includes: previous managing experience at some level, experiencing in developing young players, favorable to using advanced metrics, can control the egos in the clubhouse and keep them focused, and thick-skinned about what the media says.
Let’s see what those good folks bring to the table.
Jason Varitek: Retired Red Sox captain. Has shown opposing players how to get to first base in a timely manner. Is used to dealing with the Boston media. Managerial or coaching experience – working with catchers in Spring Training. He is currently a special assistant to VP Dave Dombrowski.
Alex Cora: Currently the bench coach for the Houston Astros. GM for the Puerto Rican national team. Has played for a number of teams, including the Red Sox, so he’s familiar with a variety of managerial styles. Houston is a very metric-oriented team. Has previously interviewed for managerial opportunities.
DeMarlo Hale: Currently the bench coach for the Toronto Blue Jays. Previously worked as a coach for the Texas Rangers and the Baltimore Orioles. He was also the third base and bench coach for the Terry Francona led Red Sox. He has previous experience managing and developing players in High A, AA, and AAA. Was named minor league Manager of the Year in 1999. Has interviewed for previous manager openings.
Brad Ausmus: Haha. Oh, people are serious about him as a candidate. Was a catcher for numerous teams in the AL and NL. Manager of the Israeli national team. Was hired by Dombrowski to be the manager of the Detroit Tigers in November 2013. Was fired following the 2017 season. Career managerial record of 314-332.
Ron Gardenhire: Currently the bench coach for the Arizona Diamondbacks. Manager of the Minnesota Twins from 2002-2014 with a record of 1068-1039. Won the Central Division six times during his tenure. The Twins played in one ALCS and never appeared in the World Series under Gardenhire. Was named AL Manager of the Year in 2010. Was known as an aggressive manager for his frequent arguments with umpires and subsequent ejections.
Sandy Alomar Jr.: Currently the first base coach of the Cleveland Indians. He has also served as their bench coach and acting manager. His first stint as a coach was with the New York Mets. As a player, he was a catcher for a variety of MLB teams. Has interviewed for previous manager openings.
Brad Mills: Currently the bench coach for the Cleveland Indians. He was a manager in the minor leagues for 11 seasons. His first MLB coaching job was as the first base coach for the Phillies. He was also the bench coach for the Boston Red Sox from 2004-2009 before being hired as the manager for the Houston Astros following the 2009 season. He was fired during the 2012 season because the Astors were on pace to lose 100 games for the second straight season. His record as a manager is 171-274.
Gabe Kapler: Currently works for the Los Angeles Dodgers as their Director of Player Development. Played for 13 seasons for numerous teams including the Red Sox. He was a coach for the Israeli national team for one season and managed the A-level Greenville Drive for one season. He was interviewed for the Dodgers managerial vacancy, but they hired Dave Roberts.
As you can see, all but two of the candidates have experience in Boston either as a player or coach, which should serve them well dealing with the media. Everyone but Varitek has experience as either a manager or coach and based on what Dombrowski said in the press conference, this makes him the least viable candidate from this list.
The choice of the new manager will be Dave Dombrowski’s first real chance to put his personal stamp on the Red Sox. We all hope he makes the right choice or he could very well be the next one leaving town.
Featured image courtesy of imgrum.org
Dombrowski image courtesy of Getty Images