Early playoff exits cost Farrell
It’s a tough business, life as a baseball manager.
One year you’re managing your team to the World Series championship, and leading your team to back-to-back American League East titles.
The next, you’re on the unemployment line, unceremoniously fired.
Welcome to the world of John Farrell, who was informed late Tuesday that he had been fired.
Farrell was often criticized in Boston for in-game strategy, but then again, what manager isn’t lambasted by the local populace in the world of 140 characters.
“I thought it was an appropriate time to make a change for the betterment of the organization,” general manager David Dombrowski said. “For me, sometimes change can be better. That’s why we decided to move forward with the change.”
The real reason he was fired is the perception that he lost control of his clubhouse, and when you have a powerful team that is bounced in the first round in back-to-back postseasons, you have to pay the price.
In the words of Red Sox chairman Tom Werner: “John didn’t do anything wrong … but change is part of baseball.”
“John did a great job for the Boston Red Sox,” Werner told The Boston Globe. “We have nothing but gratitude. Change is part of life. This is obviously something (Dombrowski) thought would benefit the organization.”
And when you’re the powerful Boston Red Sox and have the personnel to win the World Series, you better at least get there.
So now the Red Sox embark on a managerial search for one of the most coveted jobs in baseball. They will interview the likes of Alex Cora, bench coach of the Houston Astros, but most likely will turn to an experienced man.
That could lead them to Ron Gardenhire, bench coach of the Arizona Diamondbacks who was the right-hand man of manager Torey Lovullo, who’s expected to win the National League manager of the year award.
Dombrowski saw Gardenhire’s expertise firsthand while GM of the Detroit Tigers when Gardenhire led the Minnesota Twins to six division titles, winning at least 90 games in five seasons. The players loved him. His peers respected him. And he’s been itching to get back in the manager’s chair.
The Red Sox will begin their search immediately, but Gardenhire certainly should be one of the front-runners for the job as the managerial carousel continues in Major League Baseball.
John Farrell’s record with the Red Sox was 432-378 and included the 2013 World Series title.