Tag:managerial changes
Posted on: November 25, 2011 2:25 pm
Edited on: November 25, 2011 2:39 pm

Boston to choose between Valentine and Lamont?

By C. Trent Rosecrans

The Red Sox may be down to Bobby Valentine and Gene Lamont as their next manager with an announcement coming next week, according to multiple reports out of Boston.

Both Valentine and Lamont have met with the Red Sox ownership group, while Toronto first base coach Torey Lovullo has not. Alex Speier of WEEI.com reports the team will do no more interviews, so it appears the team is down to the two.

Peter Abraham of the Boston Globe cites sources as saying Valentine is "really excited" about the possibility of managing the Red Sox -- and certainly the Boston media is really excited about covering the outspoken Valentine, probably more than Lamont, who is perceived to be more milquetoast than Valentine.

Lamont, easily the underdog, does have eight years of managing under his belt. The 64-year-old managed the White Sox from 1992-95, winning a division title and the Manager of the Year award in 1993. Lamont's White Sox were in first place in 1994 when MLB went on strike. He also managed the Pirates from 1997-2000, leading the Pirates to their best record (79-83 in 1997) during the franchise's current streak of 19 consecutive losing seasons. He's been on Jim Leyland's staff in Detroit since 2006.

Valentine is currently an announcer on ESPN and last managed in the big leagues in 2002. In 15 seasons with the Rangers and Mets, valentine has a 1,117-1,072 record, leading the Mets to the World Series in 2000. He also done two stints as a manager in Japan, winning the 2005 Japan Series with the Chiba Lotte Marines.

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Posted on: November 25, 2011 1:28 pm

Jays asked for Buchholz in exchange for Farrell

By C. Trent Rosecrans

How much is a manager worth?

If you're the Marlins, it's worth two minor-leaguers in exchange for Ozzie Guillen, a manager with a .524 winning percentage over eight years and a World Series title.

If you're the Blue Jays, you seem to think your manager with one year of experience and a .500 record is worth a 27-year old starter with an All-Star appearance under his belt. The Boston Red Sox, apparently, don't agree.

According to several reports, including one from the New York Times, the Red Sox passed when the Blue Jays asked for Clay Buchholz in return for John Farrell. And wisely so.

While some may get up in arms about this trade possibility (or, really, non-possibility when you think about it), it makes sense from both sides. It's part of doing business -- the Red Sox needed a new manager after getting rid of Terry Francona, and in Farrell, there was a known commodity inside the organization (Farrell had been the Red Sox pitching coach) with major-league managing experience. He was a perfect fit. Except, you know, for that part about him already having a job and being under contract for the next two years.

That's where the Blue Jays had leverage -- if the Red Sox wanted Farrell, they could have him for a price. Asking for Buchholz is probably as close to saying "no" as you can without saying that word -- the Blue Jays didn't want to give up their manager that they like just fine, so the price was high. If they had to get a new manager, that manager would love to have Buchholz in the rotation, that's for sure. 

While the Blue Jays seem to think their manager is worth quite a bit, the market tells us differently. So far this offseason, there's been a run this off-season on first-year managers. The Cubs, White Sox and Cardinals -- three marquee openings -- went to first-time managers, the White Sox hiring a guy who has never managed at any level. The market, it seems is saying experienced managers are not worth the money they command. If you have a Tony La Russa, it's fine to pay him a lot. But if you don't, go out and storm the Wal-Mart for your next manager and get him at a discount.

Trades for a manager are rare -- as the Guillen trade was the first since the Rays sent Randy Winn and a minor-leaguer to Seattle for Lou Piniella in 2002. That one didn't pay immediate dividends, but there are at least two trades for managers that did seem to be worth the price. The Mets sent right-hander Bill Denehy to the Senators for manager Gil Hodges after the 1967 season and the Mets went on to win the 1969 World Series. The Pirates got their own World Series-winning manager in a trade, sending veteran catcher Manny Sanguillen to the A's for Chuck Tanner following the 1976 season. Tanner led the Pirates to the 1979 World Series title (with Sanguillen, who was traded back to the Pirates after the 1977 season).

It's hardly out of the question for Guillen -- or Farrell -- to lead their team to the World Series, but it's more likely Buchholz will contribute more value than any manager, so the Blue Jays were right to ask for Buchholz and the Red Sox were right to say no.

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Posted on: November 16, 2011 12:49 pm
Edited on: November 16, 2011 12:50 pm

Francona won't manage in 2012

Terry Francona

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Although nobody seemed to be asking him to manager in 2012, former Red Sox manager Terry Francona says he won't manage this upcoming season.

Francona told Sean McAdam of CSNNE.com that he's taking the year off "for my benefit."

Francona interviewed for the Cardinals job, but St. Louis went with first-time manager Mike Matheny instead.

"When I interviewed in St. Louis, I was genuinely excited about it," Francona told McAdam. "St. Louis was such an exiting opportunity. But we were all beaten up at the end of the year, and after [interviewing] I took a step back and began to look at things realistically."

With the Cardinals job filled, the Red Sox and Cubs are the only current openings. He certainly won't get the job in Boston and he said he won't be following Theo Epstein to Chicago.

"I've talked to Theo numerous times," Francona told McAdam. "We both know each other well enough where we can be honest with each other. I don't think it's the right opportunity."

Francona said he will "take a step back and re-energize," but may work in television. He said he's been contacted by Fox, ESPN and MLB Network. He filled in during Fox's ALCS coverage and was very good.

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Posted on: November 14, 2011 10:24 pm

Red Sox managerial search down to two

Ben CheringtonBy C. Trent Rosecrans

The Red Sox managerial search is down to two, Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington told reporters on Monday. Dale Sveum will meet with the Boston ownership group on Wednesday and another candidate will have a second interview later this week.

Cherington said he'd like a new manager in place before Thanksgiving.

The Red Sox also interviewed Indians bench coach Sandy Alomar Jr., Tigers third base coach Gene Lamont, Blue Jays first base coach Torey Lovullo and Phillies bench coach Pete Mackanin.

Sveum, Mackanin and Alomar also interviewed for the vacant Cubs job.

Cherington also said the Red Sox compensation talks for Cubs president Theo Epstein may have to be decided by the commissioner's office, despite the two teams receiving an extension to work on it.

"It's not what we need to be doing this offseason," Cherington told reporters (via the Boston Herald.) "I think we'd still like to figure it out on our own, but if we can't, then I think everyone probably needs to move on."

Earlier on Monday, Epstein told Boston radio station WEEI.com that he didn't believe he was worth much to his former team (as far as compensation goes.)

"That's a more existential question," Epstein said. "I know I'm right, because I know my own faults better than Ben does. I know my limitations. I'm just not worth that much. But I'm sure it will work out, one way or the other, in a way that satisfies all the parties involved. The talkers are very amicable. That's the most important thing."

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Posted on: November 14, 2011 5:45 pm

Duncan to return as Cardinals' pitching coach

Dave Duncan

By C. Trent Rosecrans

The Cardinals will have a new manager in 2012, but not a new pitching coach.

Dave Duncan, who served as Tony La Russa's pitching coach during his entire reign in St. Louis, was under contract for 2012, but wanted new manager Mike Matheny to have the final say on his status for the upcoming season. According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Matheny reached out to Duncan on Sunday, telling him the spot was his if he wanted it.

"I wanted him to feel comfortable if he felt like he wanted somebody else, that he could make that decision," Duncan told the Post-Dispatch's Derrick Goold. "He assured me that he wants me to be a part of what he's going to be doing there.

"My intentions are to come back. I'll be there."

Duncan said his wife, Jeanine, is recovering well from brain surgery and is optimistic he can be ready for spring training.

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Posted on: November 13, 2011 7:03 pm

Red Sox give Dale Sveum second interview

By Evan Brunell

The Red Sox will interview Brewers hitting coach Dale Sveum a second time, Fox Sports reports.

Sveum is one of five finalists for the Red Sox job and is thought to be the most favored candidate. No other managerial candidate is known to have received a second interview, although that could change. Also in the running is Indians bench coach Sandy Alomar Jr.,Tigers third base coach Gene Lamont, Blue Jays first base coach Torey Lovullo and  Phillies bench coach Pete Mackanin.

Sveum will meet with Red Sox GM Ben Cherington and ownership in Milwaukee on Tuesday, the first day of the GM meetings. The owner meetings follow later in the week.

It's possible Boston could hire Sveum by week's end, especially if it feels pressured by the Cubs. Chicago also has Sveum high on its list to be the next manager. Sveum's stiffest competition in Chicago looks to be Rangers pitching coach Mike Maddux. Ex-Red Sox manager Terry Francona, who lost out on the Cardinals job to Mike Matheny, is not currently under consideration for the Cubs job, sources say.

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Posted on: November 11, 2011 7:45 pm
Edited on: November 14, 2011 8:29 pm

Manager interviews finishing for Cubs, Cards, Sox

Sandy Alomar Jr.By C. Trent Rosecrans

The interviews, it seems, are done for the three managerial openings. The Cubs, Cardinals and Red Sox are all done with their first round of interviews and it appears the hirings could come relatively soon.

Cardinals general manager John Mozeliak told Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that the Cardinals' next manager will come from one of the six candidates the team interviewed. The Cardinals interviewed former Red Sox manager Terry Francona, Ryne Sandberg, third base coach Jose Oquendo, former Cardinals catcher Mike Matheny, Triple-A manager Chris Maloney and White Sox third base coach Joe McEwing.

"I'm fairly confident that it will," Mozeliak told Goold when asked if the team's next manager would come from that list.

That does not mean there will not be further questions asked of any of those six, but it doesn't appear that a surprise candidate will emerge.

Cubs general manager Jed Hoyer wasn't quite as definitive about his team's next manager coming from the list of four interviews that they have already conducted.

"I wouldn't guarantee that it is (the entire list), but we feel really good about the four guys we brought in," Hoyer told MLB.com's Carrie Muskat. "We had four very good interviews. I wouldn't rule out an additional candidate, but it's not a certainty."

The team interviewed Indians bench coach Sandy Alomar Jr. on Friday. It has also interviewed Phillies bench coach Pete Mackanin, Brewers hitting coach Dale Sveum and Rangers pitching coach Mike Maddux.

The "additional candidate" could be Francona. Hoyer said Theo Epstein has already talked to Francona, and with the history between the two, a formal interview wouldn't be a necessity. There's also Rays manager Joe Maddon, who was the other finalist when Epstein hired Francona in Boston. Maddon's resume would certainly make an interview unnecessary, although the Cubs would have to work out a deal with the Rays for compensation -- something they've still been unable to accomplish with the Red Sox.

As far as Francona's successor in Boston, Alomar, Sveum and Mackanin have already interviewed with the Red Sox. Blue Jays first base coach Torey Lovullo interviewed on Friday and Tigers third base coach Gene Lamont will interview on Saturday. Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington told reporters after Louvullo's post-interview news conference that the team had no plans on bringing in additional candidates after interviewing Lamont on Saturday. He also added that the team had not been formally turned down by another other organization when seeking permission to interview candidates.

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Posted on: November 10, 2011 12:03 pm
Edited on: November 14, 2011 8:31 pm

Maddux brothers a possibility for Cubs?

By Matt Snyder

Rangers pitching coach Mike Maddux interviewed for the Chicago Cubs' managerial opening Wednesday, and by many accounts it went very well. In fact, "he hit it out of the park," according to Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain-Dealer. Sandy Alomar Jr. will interview with the new Cubs brain trust Friday while Phillies bench coach Pete Mackanin and Brewers hitting coach Dale Sveum are also said to be in the mix (and there could be more, of course). But let's focus on Maddux for a second. Namely because of his last name and the connection to the Cubs.

As pretty much any baseball fan with a brain knows, Greg Maddux is one of the greatest pitchers of all time. He spent parts of 10 seasons with the Cubs, twice making the All-Star team and winning one Cy Young. His number 31 is retired (jointly, with Hall of Famer Fergie Jenkins) by the Cubs. And many, including humble ol' me, believe Greg Maddux would make an outstanding pitching coach.

Mike Maddux was asked Wednesday by reporters about possibly bringing his little brother along (Mike is 50, Greg is 45) should he be hired as the Cubs next manager. Mike acknowledged the two did discuss such a scenario and wouldn't say Greg was not a possibility.

From the Chicago Sun-Times:
‘‘We talked about it, yeah,’’ Mike said. ‘‘Sure did.’’

Their conclusion?

‘‘That’s kind of a private family matter,’’ he said.

Given multiple chances to rule out a Maddux family reunion should he get the job, Mike didn’t.

‘‘It’s family stuff that we should probably keep to ourselves,’’ said Mike, who also said Greg was one of the first calls he made after he was asked to interview.
Insert the famous line from Dumb and Dumber: "So you're telling me there's a chance ... "

Now, Mike hasn't even been offered the job and we aren't sure he would definitely take it if offered (though it seems likely, considering he pulled out of a scheduled interview with the Red Sox and still interviewed with the Cubs). But if he is named manager, it's worth discussing what kind of a job the Maddux brothers could do with the Cubs pitching staff in 2012 and beyond. They represent two of the best pitching minds this side of Dave Duncan and would surely prove a huge boost to the pitching staff assembled by Theo Epstein and company. Jim Bowden of ESPN.com -- who had stints as both the Reds and Nationals GM -- tweets that there is "strong sentiment" that Cubs' brass feels its best team in the dugout would be the Maddux brothers.

This is purely speculative on my part, but the biggest question with Greg might be whether or not he wants to have such a hands-on job. He's been a "special assistant" to Cubs general manager Jim Hendry the past two seasons, but being a pitching coach would require much more consistent hours. According to his Baseball-Reference page, Greg Maddux made more than $150 million in his playing career. So he doesn't need money. It seems like being in that situation, any job would be merely to escape boredom. Being pitching coach for the Cubs is a pressure-packed job for at least eight months of the year and requires work every single day throughout the entire summer. It's certainly no hobby. Would he really want such a strenuous job?

If anyone could convince him to do so, maybe it's his big brother -- if Mike even gets that chance. Stay tuned.

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com