If you’ve been at this game for any length of time at all, you know that if Ken Rosenthal throws it out there, there’s probably something going on. Fox Sports’ uber-connected baseball guy says the Red Sox will meet with Terry Francona on Friday and the manager may be cleaning out his office.
Epic collapse, to be sure. But throw Francona out? Hard to say if that’s a good call or not. From out here. No World Series titles for most of the 20th century, then two in four years once Francona comes aboard. That’s the broad view.
But the effectiveness of a manger can definitely wane, whether you’re a screamer (Billy Martin) or a players’ guy (Jim Tracy?). Everybody gets shown the door. Walter Alston worked under a series of one-year contracts for a couple of decades. What was the reasoning behind that?
You go out the door you came in. Sooner or later, the clubhouse stops listening. Time to shake it up. Francona had some remarks last night about the players not coming together and that it disappointed him. He sounded like he knew what he was talking about.
Regarding a Sept 7 team meeting: “We spent a few minutes in the clubhouse that day talking about that. There were some things that did concern me. Normally as the season progresses, there are events that make you care about each other, and this club, it didn’t always happen as much as I wanted it to. And I was frustrated by that.” (Full BostonHerald.com article).
Sounds like Francona lost the clubhouse. And knowing what we know about Francona, that’s on the clubhouse. Who doesn’t want to man up and rally behind this guy? What, winning the World Series is old hat around here, now we’re going to quibble over how we do it? Or not care if we do or not?
My opinion, I follow Francona. Proven commodity. And not in the Billy Martin, Dick Williams sense. “We’re gonna kick everybody in the butt and shake things up around here.” This guy was as cool with the players as a guy in charge could be. What the hell happened? Too much free agency? Carl Crawford’s gotten tons of heat this year, and in the last 24 hours, for his play on the field, but is he an attitude? What’s going on in that clubhouse? Have we underestimated J.D. Drew?