The Boston Red Sox self destructed at the end of last season when they blew a huge lead and missed the playoffs and they were never really in the race this campaign.
Bobby Valentine was hired after former manager Terry Francona was let go after last year’s meltdown, but he now joins Francona on the unemployment line since the Red Sox fired him on Oct. 4, a day after the regular season ended with a year to go on his contract.
Valentine was with the club less than 365 days and he led the club to a record of 69-93 this season, which was the club’s worst since way back in 1965.
Ben Cherington, the team’s general manager, announced the dismissal of Valentine and said the team had a very disappointing season for several reasons. However, he didn’t point the finger at Valentine and said that the blame can’t be pinned on just one person. The GM added that the team has made several personnel moves since August and will keep on making moves until they feel they have a team that can contend.
Cherington admitted that Valentine’s job wasn’t made any easier this year because of a slew of injuries and he did the best he could with what he had. However, the Red Sox came in dead last in the AL East division making it the first time they’ve finished in the basement since 1992.
Larry Lucchino, president of the Red Sox, said the team didn’t want to make a managerial move until the end of the season because he felt it couldn’t be saved due to the numerous issues that were surrounding the club. However, as the season wore on the situation got worse and the Red Sox were never really in the playoff picture at all.
The 62-year-old Valentine released a press statement which said he understood the club’s decision to let him go. He said it was still an excellent experience for him even though it was a disappointing season on the field.
He said he was honored to have been involved in the 100th anniversary of the famous Fenway Park and it was also an honor to wear a Red Sox uniform with so many great coaches and players.
This was Valentine’s first year managing a Major League Baseball club since he was in charge of the New York Mets in 2002. He didn’t get off to a great start in Boston after he told the press early in the season that he didn’t think Kevin Youkilis was playing with the same passion as he had in the past.
This led Dustin Pedroia to say that Valentine should have kept his thought to himself. Eventually, Youkilis found himself with the Chicago White Sox after being traded to the Windy City in June. Valentine later said he regretted making the comment about Youkilis and didn’t expect that type of reaction to it.
Cherington said the Red Sox will now begin searching for a new manager, but didn’t want to name anybody. However, many baseball insiders feel they’re trying to lure manager John Farrell away from the Toronto Blue Jays. It looks like the club will be starting from scratch and Red Sox fans are hoping the team can get its act together sooner rather than later.