It’s Valentine’s Day for the Red Sox

I read today that the Red Sox selected former New York Mets Manager Bobby Valentine as their new Manager, filling the job vacated by Terry Francona in September, 2011 following the worst late-season collapse in Red Sox history. (Don’t gloat, Yankees fans – you’ve got a far more impressive collapse of your own, as I recall).

Frankly, it’s about time, especially as my bill for the 2012 Season’s Tickets should arrive any day now and I want to make sure my money is well spent I can accurately estimate how much Pepcid AC® I need for consumption during the 7th inning stretch (Bobby Jenks as the setup man and Daniel Bard as closer? I can see Bard adequately settling in, but, frankly, from what I’ve seen Jenks can’t even throw an effective tantrum… sorry, once again, I digress…)

Now, I’m a big fan of Terry Francona, always have been: Some may argue, and I’d agree, that the 2004 Red Sox lineup was the product of Dan Duquette’s player selections… but Francona and his staff provided that amazing post season comeback. As for 2007, that was Francona’s and Theo Epstein’s leadership all the way.

I’m just a plain old Red Sox fan, but Bobby Valentine leaves me cold: He’s doesn’t use statistical analysis tools, his winning record is fairly unimpressive (.510 overall, .534 with the Mets), the only time he saw the Yankees in the post-season he lost in five games… and, he hasn’t managed since 2002, according to his current employer.

My pick would have been DeMarlo Hale: He already knows the Red Sox system. Rather than make the argument, I’ll let Francona do it for me (emphasis is mine):

“It’s the toughest market to be at third base and the toughest field and you never heard people talk about him so that was a huge compliment to him.  Part of the reason, a big reason you never heard about him, was because he did such a good job.” (source)

“I hope he gets serious consideration, if not here, somewhere else, because I think he’s a tremendous manager-in-waiting… He’ll manage somewhere, and he’ll be very good.” (source)

“I hope the way our season ended in Boston doesn’t hurt his chances, because this guy is as solid as they come.” (source)

I truly hope it wasn’t Francona’s ringing endorsements that prevented Hale from being selected, and, that Bobby Valentine can not only fill Francona’s shoes, but bring the Red Sox further while in them (I’m already busy enough bemoaning the players and umpires while at a game, I don’t need to add the manager as well!). And to the owners, not to worry: I’ll be sure to buy plenty of extra Pepcid AC® just in case your “Valentine” results in broken hearts.

Thanks for reading!

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