Sox player impressed with field of managerial candidates

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Sox player impressed with field of managerial candidates

Compared to earlier managerial searches conducted by the ownership team of HenryWernerLucchino, the Red Sox are flying under the radar in their hunt for a new skipper this year.

No media availability for the candidates. No comments from management. Nothing, really, to even indicate that they're in the market for a new manager.

But at least one Red Sox player -- who spoke to Comcast SportsNet's Mike Giardi on the condition of anonymity -- is impressed, at least with the quality of the field.

"Last year, there were a bunch of guys I didn't know or care about," he told Giardi, referring to the early part of the search when the Sox focused on a field of low-profile candidates (Dale Sveum, Sandy Alomar Jr., Pete Mackanin, etc.). "This year, when I saw the names, I was excited. These guys are well-respected."

(That great respect for Ausmus, Wallach and Pena, incidentally, is "unlike how he felt about the guy they hired last year", Bobby Valentine.)

"I can call any one of my friends on other teams and ask them about Tim Wallach or Tony Pena or Brad Ausmus, and they've got nothing but good things to say, or heard nothing but good things. How can you not like that, after last winter's expletive?"

But he's not as impressed with management's presumed favorite, current Blue Jays manager and former Sox pitching coach John Farrell.

"He's a hell of a pitching coach, but did you see Toronto play this year? They were as lost as we were.

"Losing Jose Bautista was like us losing David Ortiz, but they didn't gut their team at the deadline (and still finished only four games ahead of the Sox). And what happened to their pitching staff? Isn't that Farrell's strength? He can't make 'em make the pitch, but isn't that the expectation here? Whatever."

(EDITOR'S NOTE: To be fair to Farrell, the Blue Jays suffered a wave of pitching injuries -- Drew Hutchinson, Dustin McGowan, Jesse Litsch, Brandon Morrow, Kyle Drabek, Robert Coello -- that severely impacted the staff.)

"I'm pretty sure those guys were in more of a hurry to end the season than we were. Did you see how fast they went in the expletive? That was a step backward."

Youkilis weighs in on Valentine possibly being Japan ambassador

Youkilis weighs in on Valentine possibly being Japan ambassador

Among the reactions to the news that Bobby Valentine was possibly being considered to be the US amassador to Japan in President Donald Trump’s administration was this beauty from Kevin Youkilis. 

Valentine famously called out Youkilis early in his stormy tenure as Red Sox manager in 2012. Remember? "I don't think he's as physically or emotionally into the game as he has been in the past for some reason," Bobby V said of Youk at the time. 

The Red Sox traded Youkilis to the White Sox for two not-future Hall of Famers, outfielder Brent Lillibridge and right-hander Zach Stewart, later that season.

Youkilis, now Tom Brady’s brother-in-law by the way, had a 21-game stint playing in Japan in 2014 before retiring from baseball. 

 

Report: Bobby Valentine could be Trump’s US ambassador to Japan

Report: Bobby Valentine could be Trump’s US ambassador to Japan

Major league manager. Inventor of the wrap sandwich. Champion ballroom dancer.  And…

US ambassador to Japan?

Bobby Valentine is on the short list for that position in President Donald Trump’s administration, according to a WEEI.com report.

The former Red Sox manager (fired after a 69-93 season and last-place finish in 2012), and ex-New York Mets and Texas Rangers, skipper, also managed the Chiba Lotte Marines in Japan’s Pacific League for six seasons. 

When asked by the New York Daily News if he's being considered for the post, Valentine responded: "I haven't been contacted by anyone on Trump's team." 

Would he be interested?

"I don't like to deal in hypotheticals," Valentine told the Daily News.

Valentine, 66, has known the President-elect and Trump's brother Bob since the 1980s, is close to others on Trump’s transition team and has had preliminary discussions about the ambassador position, sources told WEEI.com’s Rob Bradford. 

Valentine, currently the athletic director of Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Conn., is also friendly with current Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who, like Valentine, attended the University of Southern California.