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Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Red Sox dismiss John Farrell | MLB.com

Another manager gets dismissed.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 11, 2017 at 09:41 AM | 108 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: john farrell, red sox

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   1. Nasty Nate Posted: October 11, 2017 at 09:49 AM (#5549605)
I suspect they have some specific replacement in mind or even already lined up. I hope so, at least.
   2. There are no words... (Met Fan Charlie) Posted: October 11, 2017 at 09:51 AM (#5549609)
Damn. He's been Grady Little-ed...
   3. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 11, 2017 at 09:55 AM (#5549614)
Odd. Firing a division winning manager, that is.
   4. Jose is an Absurd Doubles Machine Posted: October 11, 2017 at 09:56 AM (#5549616)
I'll put my early money on Alex Cora.

I don't get this move. I'm not sure what a manager is supposed to do that Farrell didn't do. He's not great but he's not bad either. I think with managers you are usually better off staying the course because in general the bad ones do more harm than the good ones do good.
   5. Tom Nawrocki Posted: October 11, 2017 at 10:03 AM (#5549632)
I long for the day when my team considers 93 wins and a division title such a disappointment that they fire the manager.
   6. TomH Posted: October 11, 2017 at 10:18 AM (#5549655)
back-to-back division titles, in a division that is not exactly a pushover either
   7. TomH Posted: October 11, 2017 at 10:19 AM (#5549656)
back-to-back division titles, in a division that is not exactly a pushover either
   8. Jose Bautista Bobblehead Day Posted: October 11, 2017 at 10:19 AM (#5549657)
Just how much of a flaming trash fire will the Sox be after 10 more years of Dombrowski making short-term moves to chase a ring?
   9. TomH Posted: October 11, 2017 at 10:21 AM (#5549661)
back-to-back division titles, in a division that is not exactly a pushover either
   10. Nasty Nate Posted: October 11, 2017 at 10:25 AM (#5549666)
Just how much of a flaming trash fire will the Sox be after 10 more years of Dombrowski making short-term moves to chase a ring?
I don't know. But if those moves make them have success, I won't really mind a down period a decade in the future from now.
   11. Charles S. is a big fan of Outerbridge Horsey Posted: October 11, 2017 at 10:25 AM (#5549667)
The Cubs just acquired Farrell's son off waivers from Cincinnati. I wouldn't be surprised if he lands on his feet in that organization.
   12. Charles S. is a big fan of Outerbridge Horsey Posted: October 11, 2017 at 10:27 AM (#5549671)
Also, I heard somewhere that he won back-to-back division titles, in a division that is not exactly a pushover either.
   13. BDC Posted: October 11, 2017 at 10:27 AM (#5549672)
I understand they won back to back division titles :)

And it's not usual to fire a manager at that point – usually you wait till he's had a losing season first. But Don Mattingly did get fired after winning three in a row, not so long ago. I think certain franchises don't appreciate the difficulty of finishing in first place.
   14. karlmagnus Posted: October 11, 2017 at 10:30 AM (#5549674)
If you switch from a long-term to a short-term strategy, your first couple of years are going to look very good, as the young guys from the long-term match with the expensive guys from the short-term. Thus the two division titles (the 2017 Sox should have been just about perfection.) 2018 and 2019 should be good too; after that the downside of Dombrowski will become painfully apparent.

Personally I'd can Dombrowski now; he's too likely to trade away youthful gold dust for middle-aged rubbish from here on out.
   15. bunyon Posted: October 11, 2017 at 10:40 AM (#5549690)
Didn't Farrell just win the division? Damn hard world out there. I mean, that's a pretty tough division.
   16. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: October 11, 2017 at 10:40 AM (#5549692)
The Red Sox won 93 games in each of the past two seasons, and Farrell was the first manager in club history to guide the club to back-to-back AL East titles.

After guiding the Red Sox to a World Series championship in his first season at the helm in 2013, Boston finished in last place in '14 and '15.

Despite the resurgence of the past two years, Boston couldn't get the spark it needed come playoff time.


Can someone explain to me how Farrell was responsible for that playoff meltdown? Isn't it just possible that that vaunted starting rotation might bear a wee bit more blame for it?
   17. Zonk Tormundbane Posted: October 11, 2017 at 10:45 AM (#5549700)
Rather shocked by this, but I'll defer to BBTF's far-from-lacking Red Sox nation as to whether this was as surprising as I think it is or as undeserved as it feels like to me.
   18. Dag Nabbit at ExactlyAsOld.com Posted: October 11, 2017 at 10:51 AM (#5549705)
Didn't Farrell just win the division? Damn hard world out there. I mean, that's a pretty tough division.

Back-to-back division titles. And you're right: that division is no pushover, either.
   19. Jose is an Absurd Doubles Machine Posted: October 11, 2017 at 10:53 AM (#5549710)
whether this was as surprising as I think it is or as undeserved as it feels like to me.


It's not particularly surprising. There has been more than a little talk about the Sox needing to advance to save his job. Whether it's deserved or not, I don't think it's deserved at all but he's a polarizing figure as managers tend to be.

Just a side note. At Game Three on Wednesday during the player introductions every member of the starting lineup (except Hanley) hugged Farrell when they were introduced. His job had been the subject of discussion after the first two blowouts and it looked to me like a team sending a message of their opinion.
   20. Toby Posted: October 11, 2017 at 10:56 AM (#5549717)
This was an 88-win team (by pythag) which had exceptional luck in extra-inning games and close games. You can read that any way you like, but If I’m Dave Dombrowski I want my teams to be 93-win teams (by pythag), not 88-win teams that win 93 with smoke and mirrors. And I want to hold the manager accountable for that.

I have nothing against Farrell, who seems perfectly ordinary, but he seems wooden and tense, which doesn’t play well with the media. And almost all of the key young players underperformed, and some colossally bad decisions were made on his watch - like managing the Nunez injury.

Bottom line, I think the Yankees got Farrell fired. I think Dombrowski sees that the Sox won the division but that on the underlying fundamentals the Yankees were a much more potent team in 2017 — and will be again in 2018 if nothing changes. So my takeaway from this is not “John Farrell may or may not be an average manager who may or may not be on the same page as Dave Dombrowski.” My takeaway is “Dave Dombrowski this off-season believes he needs to go to freaking war to keep up.” He is looking at the 88 win reality not the 93 win smoke, and he is going to make big personnel moves, along the lines of Price/Kimbrel and Sale from previous years.
   21. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: October 11, 2017 at 10:58 AM (#5549721)
As a Yankees fan, can I recommend this seasoned vet as a replacement? Just trying to help.
   22. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 11, 2017 at 11:00 AM (#5549725)
This was an 88-win team (by pythag) which had exceptional luck in extra-inning games and close games. You can read that any way you like, but If I’m Dave Dombrowski I want my teams to be 93-win teams (by pythag), not 88-win teams that win 93 with smoke and mirrors. And I want to hold the manager accountable for that.

How is Farrell accountable for that? Generally out-performance like that reflects positively on the manager?

How is it Farrell's fault that Price got hurt, Porcello sucked, and the hitters regressed?
   23. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: October 11, 2017 at 11:00 AM (#5549727)
Serious question, since I don't follow the minors: What's the state of the Red Sox farm system these days?
   24. Baldrick Posted: October 11, 2017 at 11:03 AM (#5549731)
How is it Farrell's fault that Price got hurt, Porcello sucked, and the hitters regressed?

I don't think managers make much of a difference at all, but 'the whole team underperformed!' is an odd way of defending a manager.
   25. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 11, 2017 at 11:07 AM (#5549741)

I don't think managers make much of a difference at all, but 'the whole team underperformed!' is an odd way of defending a manager.


Well, the team overperformed in terms of wins and losses. I've never heard any theory that managers have a huge impact on veteran performance.

   26. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: October 11, 2017 at 11:09 AM (#5549746)
Serious question, since I don't follow the minors: What's the state of the Red Sox farm system these days?


In terms of prospects? Not much in the pipeline ATM simply because of all the talent that has graduated or been traded. Seems to be run pretty solidly though. In terms of coaching? No clue.
   27. BDC Posted: October 11, 2017 at 11:12 AM (#5549753)
It's funny, because there can't possibly be much institutional continuity over 117 years, but Red Sox history is a bunch of short managerial stints. In fact, I think that Joe Cronin and Terry Francona are the only two Sox managers to have longer tenures than Farrell (Jimmy Collins too, but only by a few months.) Despite a lot of success over the century-plus, they've always tended to boot managers soon after winning, or at the first downturn, or just because. (Cronin put together 13 years largely because of WW2, when I guess there seemed no point in firing him; he finally won a pennant in 1946 and was gone a year later.) Even their 1910s dynasty consisted of titles under three different managers.

Short terms are the basic fact of baseball managing, but when you look at clubs like the Kelly or Gardenhire Twins and the Scioscia Angels that rambled along for many years after the peak of their managers' success, a pattern like the Red Sox' seems, well, different, anyway.

   28. Dillon Gee Escape Plan Posted: October 11, 2017 at 11:12 AM (#5549754)
Serious question, since I don't follow the minors: What's the state of the Red Sox farm system these days?


https://www.minorleagueball.com/2017/7/30/16012928/mid-season-review-boston-red-sox-top-20-prospects-for-2017

http://www.soxprospects.com/

It's a lot thinner now, but I think the lower levels showed some promise. Not a lot of interest in AA/AAA this year outside of Devers/Chavis. Beeks is the only remotely interesting pitcher in the higher levels but he doesn't have a spot in the Sox rotation, especially being a lefty. Groome's ERA was ugly, but a lot of that came from several bad starts (including a 1.1 IP, 9 run performance before he hit the DL). He did strike out 72 batters in 55.1 innings though. Bryan Mata had a 3.74 ERA in A ball and struck out nearly a batter per inning as an 18-year-old. I like Ockimey's bat though his power hasn't really emerged.
   29. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: October 11, 2017 at 11:16 AM (#5549760)
Serious question, since I don't follow the minors: What's the state of the Red Sox farm system these days?

In terms of prospects? Not much in the pipeline ATM simply because of all the talent that has graduated or been traded. Seems to be run pretty solidly though. In terms of coaching? No clue.


Thanks for the update. I see all those grade A young players on the Major League roster, Devers being the latest, and I was wondering if there were more where they came from. In spite of my Yankees fandom, I've always had a lot of respect for the way their whole organization has functioned, with the brief exception of the Valentine years.

EDIT: Also thanks to Dillon Gee. I'll check out those links.
   30. fra paolo Posted: October 11, 2017 at 11:18 AM (#5549770)
Personally I'd can Dombrowski now; he's too likely to trade away youthful gold dust for middle-aged rubbish from here on out.

This strikes me as a big miscalculation about Dombrowski.

Dombrowski is an excellent general manager. He has taken three different teams to the post-season, and can boast one World Series championship and several league and divisional pennants.

The flaw identified here is that he can be too slavish in following ownership demands. The trades of youthful players with the Tigers were mostly owing to Mr Ilitch's desire to win a World Series before he died. In 2015, before he was fired by Mr Ilitch, Dombrowski did an excellent job in starting to re-load the farm system. Prior to that, he had kept the Tigers in contention for much of the 2006-15 period, mostly through shrewd trades that mixed both youthful gold dust and middle-aged rubbish in judicious proportions, but also with the help of Mr Ilitch's generous bank account.

He also rebuilt the Florida Marlins, who were still good enough to contend after their 1997 championship, trading away the middle-aged rubbish and assembling the core of the club that won the World Series in 2003.

I'm fairly confident that, if left to his own devices, Dombrowski would have continued the Tigers' re-build/re-load during the 2015/16 off-season, and the team would probably have not thought it necessary to trade Justin Verlander, and would be looking in better shape than it does now. I'm confident Chris Ilitch deeply regrets the sacking of Dombrowski whether it was his decision or his father's.

So, going forward, the question is what will Red Sox' ownership demand of Dombrowski. If they demand another playoff appearance, then he will deliver some good short-term decision-making. If they think the time has come to lift the foot off the accelerator and look for the petrol pump, then Dombrowski will make some good medium-term or long-term deals.
   31. Textbook Editor Posted: October 11, 2017 at 11:18 AM (#5549772)
Just how much of a flaming trash fire will the Sox be after 10 more years of Dombrowski making short-term moves to chase a ring?


Well, that's the $100,000 question. Will 1 ring in the next 3 years make up for 5 years of no playoff baseball after that? Hard to say.

Dombrowski's not a problem--yet--but I sure don't think he's suddenly going to build a player development machine and care about home-grown talent, and that's... probably not going to be a good thing 7-10 years from now.

I confess the move surprises me. I do hope they have a replacement in mind; I'm a bit worried they might not, or, worse--far worse--that it might be a Dombrowski retread (see Ausmus, B.).

Ausmus would be a craptastic catastrophe. Dear god I hope it's not him.
   32. Rally Posted: October 11, 2017 at 11:27 AM (#5549785)
with the brief exception of the Valentine years.


Year. It sure was fun though, wish it had lasted years.
   33. TDF didn't lie, he just didn't remember Posted: October 11, 2017 at 11:28 AM (#5549786)
You can read that any way you like, but If I’m Dave Dombrowski I want my teams to be 93-win teams (by pythag), not 88-win teams that win 93 with smoke and mirrors. And I want to hold the manager accountable for that.
Um, I think this is the GM's job, not the manager's.

I mean, Pablo Sandoval isn't Ferrell's fault.
   34. SoSH U at work Posted: October 11, 2017 at 11:39 AM (#5549793)
How is Farrell accountable for that? Generally out-performance like that reflects positively on the manager?


Getting the most out of your talent reflects positively (most recently by Girardi in 2016). Outperforming your pyth is luck. The idea that a manager should be measured by how much they outperformed pyth is nonsense.
   35. salvomania Posted: October 11, 2017 at 11:55 AM (#5549823)
It's funny, because there can't possibly be much institutional continuity over 117 years, but Red Sox history is a bunch of short managerial stints.

In the last 50+ years the Cardinals have had seven managers (not counting interim guys):

1. Red Schoendienst, 1966-76
2. Vern Rapp, 1977-78
3. Ken Boyer, 1978-80
4. Whitey Herzog, 1980-90
5. Joe Torre, 1990-95
6. Tony LaRussa, 1996-2011
7. Mike Matheny, 2012-
   36. The Anthony Kennedy of BBTF (Scott) Posted: October 11, 2017 at 12:09 PM (#5549833)
It's not all Farrell's fault, but I didn't think he was an especially good manager, I'd give him a C+/B- grade. If the Sox believe that he was ####### something up, I trust the team enough to think their replacement will be at least equal to Farrell.
   37. RJ in TO Posted: October 11, 2017 at 12:21 PM (#5549848)
From Pete Abraham:
Dombrowski said Farrell was fired for reasons he won't disclose and that no level of team success would have prevented that.
   38. salvomania Posted: October 11, 2017 at 12:26 PM (#5549855)
1. Red Schoendienst, 1966-76

Schoendienst led the NL in steals as a rookie 2b in 1945, retired as a 10-time all-star at 40, and wrapped up his subsequent 11-year managerial gig more than 40 years ago... and is still employed by the team as a coach and special assistant.
   39. wjones Posted: October 11, 2017 at 12:26 PM (#5549857)
Guess he was a better manager when he finished last than when he finished first. Looking at that history above, seems the organization gets pissed when a manager finishes first, and their days are numbered.

The guy above with the Valentine pic stole my thunder.
   40. salvomania Posted: October 11, 2017 at 12:29 PM (#5549860)
Schoendienst is the last surviving member of the 1946 World Series champs, and no one survives from any earlier WS champions.
   41. villageidiom Posted: October 11, 2017 at 12:29 PM (#5549861)
Y'know, the post-departure slam articles in the Boston media almost write themselves at this point, given the decades we've seen them. I've made the point before that this act was a Lucchino specialty, so with him gone I would normally expect not to see anything after Farrell's dismissal.

But given we've got back-to-back division titles and - as Jose mentions above - Farrell didn't really seem to do wrong here, my guess is that there were some seriously wrong things going on behind the scenes. The PeteAbe comment linked above suggests the same, though it doesn't suggest we'll ever find out what it was.

   42. Nasty Nate Posted: October 11, 2017 at 12:31 PM (#5549864)
From Pete Abraham:

Dombrowski said Farrell was fired for reasons he won't disclose and that no level of team success would have prevented that.
Whoa. Does anyone know where/when Dombrowski said that? I don't see it in the recap of his presser.
   43. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: October 11, 2017 at 12:34 PM (#5549866)
Groome's ERA was ugly, but a lot of that came from several bad starts (including a 1.1 IP, 9 run performance before he hit the DL). He did strike out 72 batters in 55.1 innings though.


It would also be understandable if he were distracted, given all the #### that's going on with his dad.
   44. wjones Posted: October 11, 2017 at 12:39 PM (#5549872)
Dombrowski said Farrell was fired for reasons he won't disclose and that no level of team success would have prevented that.


Beer and chicken in the clubhouse again?
   45. bunyon Posted: October 11, 2017 at 12:56 PM (#5549889)
Pedroia: Player-manager
   46. Walks Clog Up the Bases Posted: October 11, 2017 at 12:58 PM (#5549895)
Beer and chicken in the clubhouse again?


Cocaine with Ronnie Washington.
   47. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: October 11, 2017 at 12:58 PM (#5549896)
Dustin Pedroia for the next player-manager!

ETA:
DAMN IT BUNYON. I couldn't decide whether to post this in this thread or the one on Pedroia. My indecision cost me dearly.
   48. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: October 11, 2017 at 01:00 PM (#5549900)
Cocaine with Ronnie Washington.


I thought he just tripped and his nose landed in the cocaine? And it was just once, right?
   49. No longer interested in this website Posted: October 11, 2017 at 01:00 PM (#5549901)
Odd. Firing a division winning manager, that is.


Not when he wasn't hired by the current general manager.
   50. No longer interested in this website Posted: October 11, 2017 at 01:02 PM (#5549902)
Just how much of a flaming trash fire will the Sox be after 10 more years of Dombrowski making short-term moves to chase a ring?


You're joking, right? Every other team in baseball should be so lucky to have Dombrowski.
   51. BDC Posted: October 11, 2017 at 01:05 PM (#5549908)
In the last 50+ years the Cardinals have had seven managers

In itself interesting, too, because before that, even though they too had a lot of success after the mid-1920s, the Cardinals kept changing managers constantly too. Before Schoendienst took over, they'd won World Series for Rogers Hornsby, Gabby Street, Frankie Frisch, Billy Southworth, Eddie Dyer, and Johnny Keane, all of whom departed for one reason or another soon thereafter. Even Southworth, whose Cardinal tenure is the basis for his HOF case, lasted just five years there.
   52. No longer interested in this website Posted: October 11, 2017 at 01:11 PM (#5549917)
(Cronin put together 13 years largely because of WW2, when I guess there seemed no point in firing him; he finally won a pennant in 1946 and was gone a year later.)


Cronin was there that long because he was also busy being a future Hall of Fame shortstop for most of those years he was double-dipping as the Red Sox manager.

The flaw identified here is that he can be too slavish in following ownership demands. The trades of youthful players with the Tigers were mostly owing to Mr Ilitch's desire to win a World Series before he died. In 2015, before he was fired by Mr Ilitch, Dombrowski did an excellent job in starting to re-load the farm system. Prior to that, he had kept the Tigers in contention for much of the 2006-15 period, mostly through shrewd trades that mixed both youthful gold dust and middle-aged rubbish in judicious proportions, but also with the help of Mr Ilitch's generous bank account.


Exactly and then some. Trader Dave's record in building teams through trades is as good as anyone in the last 50 years and stands up against any GM in history. Miguel Cabrera and Max Scherzer were stolen in deals that ended up netting the team two MVPs, a Triple Crown, and a Cy Young. That's just through two trades. The worst deals of DD's Tigers tenure were demanded by Ilitch. That would be the Fielder signing and the VMart contract.
   53. bunyon Posted: October 11, 2017 at 01:12 PM (#5549919)
DAMN IT BUNYON. I couldn't decide whether to post this in this thread or the one on Pedroia. My indecision cost me dearly.

When in doubt, post everywhere.
   54. Koot Posted: October 11, 2017 at 01:14 PM (#5549922)
I'm not surprised they fired him. He was an okay manager. I'm okay with this move if there's a plan in place for who they'd like to hire (I'm guessing there isn't).

There were a few times this year when he looked like he had no control over the clubhouse. The incident with Baltimore early in the season; the nonsense with Price and Eck. I wonder if this was part of why he was let go (especially based on the Pete Abraham quote above).
   55. Lars6788 Posted: October 11, 2017 at 01:17 PM (#5549924)
Maybe Farrell didn't have the players' or the front office's backing behind him anymore.

Maybe he was having an affair with a sideline reporter.

Maybe nothing short of a ring would have saved him at this point and the writing was on the wall.
   56. Joe Bivens Recognizes the Kenyan Precedent Posted: October 11, 2017 at 01:17 PM (#5549925)
He's a scapegoat. Congrats to him, he gets paid well for not working for a year. The American Dream. I hope he enjoys it and his health continues to improve. I could not imagine having to answer every imbicillic question thrown at him after every loss. 162 games and the press treats losses like the schedule was 16 games. That has to wear on you.
   57. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: October 11, 2017 at 01:21 PM (#5549926)
In the last 50+ years the Cardinals have had seven managers (not counting interim guys):

1. Red Schoendienst, 1966-76
2. Vern Rapp, 1977-78
3. Ken Boyer, 1978-80
4. Whitey Herzog, 1980-90
5. Joe Torre, 1990-95
6. Tony LaRussa, 1996-2011
7. Mike Matheny, 2012-


In the last 22 years, the Yankees have had 2 managers: Torre and Girardi.

In the 22 years before that, they had 19.

The Dodgers had but 2 managers from 1954 through mid-1996: Walter Alston and Tommy LaSorda. But nobody's likely to beat Connie Mack's run with the Philadelphia A's, which began with him looking like this, and ended with him looking like this.
   58. Nasty Nate Posted: October 11, 2017 at 01:21 PM (#5549930)
In general, the Sox inspire a lot of wacky conspiracy theories (the weirdest one was in a fangraphs comment section which saw the signing of Rusney Castillo as part of a plan to cater to the racist part of the fanbase. Yes, Rusney Castillo), and with an information vacuum like this I'm sure they will be sprouting up soon.

I bet we'll see something along the lines of: Farrell backed the players in the Price-Eck bickering, and ownership didn't like that. That theory allows any media personality to blame Price and/or ownership, depending on their agenda.
   59. Infinite Yost (Voxter) Posted: October 11, 2017 at 01:25 PM (#5549933)
Dombrowski is an excellent general manager.


I'm not sure I believe this anymore. He certainly was for a long time, but there's some evidence the league has passed him by. And his boom-or-bust strategy would have driven me insane if I were a Tigers fan.
   60. Joe Bivens Recognizes the Kenyan Precedent Posted: October 11, 2017 at 01:30 PM (#5549941)
The incident with Price and Eck was bull ####. These are men. You can't tell them how to behave. What should they do? Hang signs around the clubhouse reminding people to be professional?
   61. Jose is an Absurd Doubles Machine Posted: October 11, 2017 at 01:33 PM (#5549945)
I'm not sure I believe this anymore. He certainly was for a long time, but there's some evidence the league has passed him by.


What's the evidence? I'm not saying he's brilliant but as a Sox fan I've generally been pleased with what he's done.
   62. No longer interested in this website Posted: October 11, 2017 at 01:35 PM (#5549949)
I'm not sure I believe this anymore. He certainly was for a long time, but there's some evidence the league has passed him by. And his boom-or-bust strategy would have driven me insane if I were a Tigers fan.


Yeah, us Tigers fans "hated" all the success and excitement we had for nearly a decade. Drove us insane.

First two years on the job in Boston he helped guide the team from last place to two division titles. There are seven guys in your lineup who were drafted by the organization and half of them are still pretty young. He got Chris Sale, who will probably win a Cy Young (he's really good at trading for CY winners).

Me thinks you are unreasonably concerned. Take it from this Tigers fan: we would gladly have him back. He didn't destroy our future, he acquired tons of talent. He couldn't do exactly everything he wanted in Detroit because his owner wanted to win YESTERDAY. Yet, he still won four division titles and two pennants in a nine-year stretch. I suspect that the Red Sox ownership is more thoughtful. You'll win a title. I bet you'll win more than one WS under Dombrowski.

Frankly, if I was a competing GM I would never take a call from Dave Dombrowski. Any time I'm on the phone with that guy, he's just seconds away from making me look foolish.
   63. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: October 11, 2017 at 01:41 PM (#5549964)
From Pete Abraham:

Dombrowski said Farrell was fired for reasons he won't disclose and that no level of team success would have prevented that.


My own snide reaction to reading that was, "Ah, he's been ####### reporters again has he?"

But the super secret nondiscloseable reasons probably just amount to Dombrowski wanting to give the job to someone specific who is loyal to him.
   64. Steve Balboni's Personal Trainer Posted: October 11, 2017 at 01:58 PM (#5549986)
AS a lifelong Red Sox fan:

1) John Farrell is neither the problem, nor the solution, for whatever your team needs. He is simply there.
2) I was never much of a fan, but I think REd Sox Nation underestimates how big a loss David Ortiz was in 2017. The team basically lost one of the ten best hitters in the game, and by far their biggest power threat, and replaced him with, in effect, Mitch Moreland. Getting Chris Sale crosses out a lot of that loss, but the team never really tried to replace Ortiz in a one-for-one way.
3) So much of the next few years of this team is based on the development/health of players they already have - this team "is what it is" for the next two years, in all likelihood. If Price/Sale/Porcello are healthy and effective the next two years, this is a World Series contender. If Betts/Benintendi/Devers develop into middle-of-the-lineup hitters, then the lineup will score runs. But the 2017 Red Sox didn't quite have either, and in a weak AL, it was enough to squeal by the Yankees, win 93 games, and make the playoffs.

As the firing today suggests, New England sports fans have been spoiled the last 15 years to the point where if we aren't legit championship contenders, then it is not good enough. I am guilty of that mentality now, and it has taken some of the joy away from the day-to-day games and news of my Boston-area sports teams.
   65. jmurph Posted: October 11, 2017 at 02:15 PM (#5550009)
What's the evidence? I'm not saying he's brilliant but as a Sox fan I've generally been pleased with what he's done.

There are certainly a few "actual talent for reliever" trades I think most of us would like back, but yeah, on balance, there isn't a lot to complain about. It's pretty hard to pin the staff falling apart late in the season/underperforming throughout the season on Dombrowski. Or Farrell, for that matter.
   66. There are no words... (Met Fan Charlie) Posted: October 11, 2017 at 02:20 PM (#5550019)
I don't think managers make much of a difference at all, but 'the whole team underperformed!' is an odd way of defending a manager.


I'd like to introduce you to the Terry Collins apologists...
   67. jmurph Posted: October 11, 2017 at 02:26 PM (#5550027)
On the "thing that shall not be named" thing from Pete Abe... I was wondering if the Price usage was something that everyone throughout the organization was comfortable with. The story seemed to change as time went on (granted, his health/conditioning obviously could have changed, as well).
   68. There are no words... (Met Fan Charlie) Posted: October 11, 2017 at 02:27 PM (#5550029)
In the last 50+ years the Cardinals have had seven managers (not counting interim guys):

1. Red Schoendienst, 1966-76
2. Vern Rapp, 1977-78
3. Ken Boyer, 1978-80
4. Whitey Herzog, 1980-90
5. Joe Torre, 1990-95
6. Tony LaRussa, 1996-2011
7. Mike Matheny, 2012-


In that same time frame, the Mets had 15 and 5 of them won pennants.
   69. There are no words... (Met Fan Charlie) Posted: October 11, 2017 at 02:32 PM (#5550039)
(not counting interim guys)


Funny thing, a lot of times the "interim guy" was Shoendienst.
   70. Captain Supporter Posted: October 11, 2017 at 03:21 PM (#5550100)
Of course except in cases where things get really public (e.g., Billy Martin and George Steinbrenner), you can never really know the inside story of how a manager relates to ownership and the players. However, this smells to me like a situation where the Boston ownership is doing this to placate the media and the fans.

I'm also enjoying the Dombrowski era. He's not really a long term thinker, is he? And if it really is ownership that is driving the short term thinking, that is even better.
   71. The Yankee Clapper Posted: October 11, 2017 at 03:33 PM (#5550125)
Dombrowski said Farrell was fired for reasons he won't disclose and that no level of team success would have prevented that.

The casual smear of departing managers seems to be a Boston tradition that Dombrowski had no trouble adopting for his own use. I'm rather skeptical that there is anything more to this than the anti-Francona nonsense the Red Sox peddled when they pushed him out the door.
   72. jmurph Posted: October 11, 2017 at 03:41 PM (#5550137)
This seems like the literal opposite of "casual smearing," no?
   73. Nasty Nate Posted: October 11, 2017 at 03:51 PM (#5550154)
72. jmurph Posted: October 11, 2017 at 03:41 PM (#5550137)
This seems like the literal opposite of "casual smearing," no?
Just you wait, the Sox organization are all-powerful genius media-manipulators but also incompetent PR boobs. Simply ignore the inherent contradiction there!
   74. jmurph Posted: October 11, 2017 at 03:56 PM (#5550166)
Ha, I was waiting for you to jump in with the Sox/press madlibs, but it's usually reserved for players!

Honestly, refusing to say anything negative in public, or to the media, is a very strange definition of smearing, but Dombrowski isn't "really a long term thinker," so he probably just didn't think it all the way through.

   75. Jose is an Absurd Doubles Machine Posted: October 11, 2017 at 03:59 PM (#5550174)
It's tough being a Sox fan these days what with two straight division titles and a young and talented core. The Dombrowski era has been a massive disappointment.
   76. jmurph Posted: October 11, 2017 at 04:10 PM (#5550194)
Seriously, what a chore it is to be a Red Sox fan.

I was more disappointed last year, when I had high hopes and then Cleveland just steamrolled them; by the time the playoffs rolled around this year I had already given up hope. But yeah, two division titles in a row, and I expect them to be the best team in the division again entering next year, barring some major moves elsewhere. The best players are all young and exciting. We've certainly cheered for worse, less exciting incarnations of this team!
   77. Rough Carrigan Posted: October 11, 2017 at 04:14 PM (#5550201)
Farrell somehow survived finishing last twice in a row. Cancer likely saved him as they didn't want to fire a guy right after a cancer diagnosis. So he survived when almost anyone would've been gone and now he's gone when most guys would've survived. Ehh.
   78. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 11, 2017 at 04:23 PM (#5550217)
You'll win a title. I bet you'll win more than one WS under Dombrowski.

Even though Dombrowski is a very good GM, this is unlikely. Even if the Red Sox win the division every year for the next 10 years (unlikely), your expectation is one WS Championship. It's really hard to win multiple championships in a short period of time.
   79. Blanks for Nothing, Larvell Posted: October 11, 2017 at 04:33 PM (#5550231)
I confess the move surprises me. I do hope they have a replacement in mind; I'm a bit worried they might not, or, worse--far worse--that it might be a Dombrowski retread (see Ausmus, B.).

Ausmus would be a craptastic catastrophe. Dear god I hope it's not him.


Only guy mentioned in the recently-posted CBSSports.com story.

Good luck with him. He sucks.
   80. Textbook Editor Posted: October 11, 2017 at 04:42 PM (#5550244)
Ausmus would be a Valentine-level disaster.
   81. Blanks for Nothing, Larvell Posted: October 11, 2017 at 04:48 PM (#5550254)
Dombrowski is an excellent general manager.


He was. I doubt he is anymore. He hired Ausmus, an abysmal hire when the window of contention was still very much open, and left the Tigers organization in shambles.
   82. RJ in TO Posted: October 11, 2017 at 04:51 PM (#5550257)
Textbook Editor has locked down my support for Ausmus.
   83. Blanks for Nothing, Larvell Posted: October 11, 2017 at 04:51 PM (#5550260)
Take it from this Tigers fan: we would gladly have him back. He didn't destroy our future, he acquired tons of talent.


Nah -- I was ready to move on. He did a poor job from 2014 on.
   84. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: October 11, 2017 at 05:00 PM (#5550273)

From Pete Abraham:
Dombrowski said Farrell was fired for reasons he won't disclose and that no level of team success would have prevented that.

Hmmmmm, I think I may have uncovered the reason. Could this man be Farrell?
   85. Walt Davis Posted: October 11, 2017 at 05:22 PM (#5550315)
I totally understand this. I'm hoping the Cubs fire Maddon after 5 straight WS titles.
   86. Textbook Editor Posted: October 11, 2017 at 05:34 PM (#5550331)
I'm also seeing Alex Cora (mentioned above), Varitek, and Gabe Kapler as candidates. And Lovullo, which seems... wildly optimistic and not at all likely to happen.

Just, please, god, not Brad Ausmus.
   87. Walt Davis Posted: October 11, 2017 at 05:49 PM (#5550349)
The offense was definitely disappointing, with an oddly-timed power outage, and none of the young players took a step forward. Some of that is DD's fault -- Moreland, trading Shaw, not finding a C who can hit (although Vazquez did fine). Some was unavoidable with Ortiz's retirement, Hanley's contract and possibly the start of Pedroia's decline. Whether the disappointing seasons of the 4 B's is Farrell's fault, the hitting coach's fault, regression to true talent or just bad luck -- well, it certainly wasn't a plus in Farrell's column.

Sale and Pomeranz led the staff and Fister worked out to be an important band aid and they were all DD acquisitions. Of course so was Price. Porcello mainly looks like a return to form. I don't see anything obvious here that might end up on the positive or negative side of Farrell's ledger.

So, pretty blah I guess but a team with aspirations wants better than blah and blah is not enough to counter-act any perceived off-field negatives that may have existed.

   88. Scott Ross Posted: October 11, 2017 at 06:00 PM (#5550365)
"ended with him looking like this."


I thought for sure that link was gonna take me to a pic of Helen Thomas.

Weirdly disappointed.
   89. Nasty Nate Posted: October 11, 2017 at 06:16 PM (#5550383)
58. Nasty Nate Posted: October 11, 2017 at 01:21 PM (#5549930)
I bet we'll see something along the lines of: Farrell backed the players in the Price-Eck bickering, and ownership didn't like that. That theory allows any media personality to blame Price and/or ownership, depending on their agenda.
I swear I hadn't seen Tomase's incoherent column when I wrote that.
   90. The Yankee Clapper Posted: October 11, 2017 at 06:33 PM (#5550402)
Honestly, refusing to say anything negative in public, or to the media, is a very strange definition of smearing . . .

When Dombroski said "no level of team success" would have prevented Farrell's firing, isn't he suggesting misconduct or massive managerial malfeasance? They won 93 games, so how bad a manager could Farrell be? Not beating the Astros, who most considered the superior team, couldn't really be a firing offense, could it?
   91. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: October 11, 2017 at 06:39 PM (#5550407)
Dombrowski's "no level of team success" comment may also be perfectly well understood to mean Farrell was fired simply because he's not Dombrowski's guy and Dombrowski made up his mind well before Boston's 2017 season ended that he was going to fire Farrell and hire his own guy.

Dombrowski has probably known for months now who will be managing the 2018 Red Sox and that it won't be John Farrell. That kind of thing happens every day. Anyone in any mid-to-high level management job knows that if their boss changes, it's time to start sending resumes around because the new boss is going to replace their immediate underling(s) with people loyal to them as soon as practicable. (Unless of course you're a loyal friend of your outgoing boss, in which case they will take you with them wherever they end up.)
   92. Commissioner Bud Black Beltre Hillman Posted: October 11, 2017 at 06:45 PM (#5550417)
When Dombroski said "no level of team success" would have prevented Farrell's firing, isn't he suggesting misconduct or massive managerial malfeasance? They won 93 games, so how bad a manager could Farrell be? Not beating the Astros, who most considered the superior team, couldn't really be a firing offense, could it?
If he wanted to smear him, he'd have smeared him. He didn't. Sorry :(

But maybe he will in some future presser! You can hold out hope.
   93. Jeff Frances the Mute Posted: October 11, 2017 at 06:51 PM (#5550426)
When Dombroski said "no level of team success" would have prevented Farrell's firing, isn't he suggesting misconduct or massive managerial malfeasance? They won 93 games, so how bad a manager could Farrell be? Not beating the Astros, who most considered the superior team, couldn't really be a firing offense, could it?


It isn't like the Boston media is going to run wild with uniformed speculation of what Farrell "did". Oh wait...
   94. The Yankee Clapper Posted: October 11, 2017 at 06:53 PM (#5550429)
Terry Franconia weighs in:
Scott Lauber, ESPN Staff Writer

Terry Francona, speaking before Game 5 of ALDS, said he talked to "dear friend" John Farrell earlier today. "Knowing John the way I do, he'll land on his feet and he'll be in a better position than he was before," Francona said.

Bit of a jab at the end.
   95. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 11, 2017 at 06:53 PM (#5550430)
Dombrowski's "no level of team success" comment may also be perfectly well understood to mean Farrell was fired simply because he's not Dombrowski's guy and Dombrowski made up his mind well before Boston's 2017 season ended that he was going to fire Farrell and hire his own guy.

What if they won the Pennant? The World Series.

I'm 100% certain Dombrowski wasn't going to fire a WS winning manager.
   96. madvillain Posted: October 11, 2017 at 07:13 PM (#5550455)
As an outsider I don't get this one at all.

When Dombroski said "no level of team success" would have prevented Farrell's firing, isn't he suggesting misconduct or massive managerial malfeasance? They won 93 games, so how bad a manager could Farrell be? Not beating the Astros, who most considered the superior team, couldn't really be a firing offense, could it?


IKR? I was about to ask, was there a Grady Little moment or some #### in this series that was so egregious you have to let him go? Doesn't appear so. So what, did he sexually harass someone? Snorting lines in the clubhouse? Dombo really threw him under the bus with that quote as it leads to a lot of speculation as to what exactly the off field issue is.
   97. Textbook Editor Posted: October 11, 2017 at 07:31 PM (#5550518)
Tomase is such a clown.
   98. Jose is an Absurd Doubles Machine Posted: October 11, 2017 at 07:34 PM (#5550528)
Madvillain - Yeah that’s just a load of crap. Theo said something similar after firing Little. Of COURSE Farrell was coming back if the Sox won the pennant or World Series and if he had done anything as reprehensible as you say he would’ve been fired on the spot.
   99. Chris Fluit Posted: October 11, 2017 at 07:42 PM (#5550542)
AS a lifelong Red Sox fan:

1) John Farrell is neither the problem, nor the solution, for whatever your team needs. He is simply there.
That's the way I felt about Farrell when he was with the Blue Jays. He wasn't a bad manager. I wasn't calling for him to be fired. But he wasn't a great manager either. I was surprised that the Red Sox were willing to trade a player to Toronto to get Farrell out of his contract. Not that I had any say, but I was perfectly willing to let him go for a reasonable price. He seemed fairly replaceable.
   100. Hank G. Posted: October 11, 2017 at 08:53 PM (#5550641)
This seems like the literal opposite of "casual smearing," no?


Well, no. Dombrowski basically said that Farrell did something so bad that no amount of success on the field would keep him from being fired.

The opposite of “casual smearing” would be “we decided to go in another direction”, or “we felt the players were getting complacent and we felt a new manager would shake things up” or “I just wanted my own guy in there”.

Unless you meant that the opposite of “casual smearing” is “premeditated character assassination”. I can’t really tell.
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