Sox will have competition in manager search


Sox will have competition in manager search

BOSTON -- A few days ago, the Red Sox had the managerial field to themselves, being the only franchise of the 30 in the hunt for a new manager.

But the retirement of Tony La Russa Monday and the firing of Mike Quade Wednesday means the Sox now have company with the St. Louis Cardinals and Chicago Cubs.

The Cubs are particularly relevant, since they are led by president of baseball operations Theo Epstien. In his final weeks with the Red Sox, Epstein helped direct the search for a replacement for Terry Francona.

Now, he may be interested in some of the same candidates to replace Quade.

"There may be some people that we both talk to," confirmed Red Sox GM Ben Cherington. "That hasn't happened yet because they have started their (search) yet. It's possible that we'll be talking to some of the same people.

"But the teams are different. The teams are at different stages. The cities are different. I think the right manager in Boston is not necessarily the right manager in Chicago and the right manager in Chicago is not necessarily the right manager in Boston.

"Theo and I may agree on a lot of stuff, but I don't think we're looking for the same person in this particular case. We did a lot of work together right after Tito Francona left and since Theo's left, our list has probably changed a little bit and I don't know what his list looks like."

Cherington noted that the personal relationship between a manager and general manager is "critical," and by definition, he and Epstein may be in the market for different personalities.

"I don't think we're looking for the same person," he said, "even if some of the candidates we might consider may be similar.''

Wednesday’s Red Sox-Yankees lineups: Pedroia still out

Wednesday’s Red Sox-Yankees lineups: Pedroia still out

Dustin Pedroia is again out of the Red Sox lineup tonight, John Farrell said in his weekly interview on WEEI Wednesday afternoon. The Sox open a two-game series with the New York Yankees at Fenway.

Pedroia hurt his knee and ankle Friday night after a hard slide into second base by the Baltimore Orioles’ Manny Machado, leading to plenty of controversy in its aftermath. 

With Pablo Sandoval placed on the 10-day disabled list before the scheduled opener of this series was rained out Tuesday, Josh Rutledge, just off the DL, will start at third and Marco Hernandez will play second.

Rick Porcello (1-2, 5.32 ERA) pitches for the Red Sox, opposed by the Yankees right-hander Luis Severino (1-1, 4.05).  Here's how Porcello has fared against the Yankees: 

The full lineups: 

Brett Gardner LF
Chase Headley 3B
Matt Holliday DH
Jacoby Ellsbury CF
Starlin Castro 2B
Aaron Judge RF
Greg Bird 1B
Austin Romine C
Ronald Torreyes SS

Luis Severino RHP

Xander Bogaerts SS
Andrew Benintendi LF
Mookie Betts RF
Mitch Moreland 1B
Hanley Ramirez DH
Jackie Bradley Jr. CF
Josh Rutledge 3B
Marco Hernandez 2B
Sandy Leon C

Rick Porcello RHP

POLITICO sees Epstein as potential savior for Democrats

POLITICO sees Epstein as potential savior for Democrats

A piece that ran on POLITICO Wednesday morning explored an interesting possibility: A potential political career for longtime baseball executive Theo Epstein. 

The piece, titled “Could Theo Epstein Perform a Miracle for the Democrats?” comes a month after Fortune magazine ranked the Cubs president of baseball operations No. 1 on its annual ranking of the world’s greatest leaders. In the POLITICO article, Ben Strauss, in addition to noting the 43-year-old’s accomplishments with the Red Sox and Cubs, hits on several instances in which Epstein’s leadership has been mentioned in relation to politics. 

Strauss then goes on to interview CNN senior political commentator (and Cubs fan) David Axelrod about whether Epstein could be a saving grace with “Democrats on the lookout for a new generation of talent.”

The interview sees both POLITICO and Axelrod compare Epstein to Barack Obama. Says Axelrod: 

They both have two kinds of intelligence: emotional intelligence and a more linear intelligence. They both have the self-confidence to surround themselves with very smart people. Theo’s had a core group around him (general manager Jed Hoyer and head of amateur scouting Jason McLeod) since the beginning in Boston. It’s striking how much he relishes smart people around him and has the confidence to be challenged...Obama had it, too. I would add that Epstein has learned on the job. In Boston he was a pioneer [in using statistical analysis]...He’s told me that he used to be dismissive of the touchy-feely stuff [in evaluating baseball players], but now his scouts write five-page essays about the guys they’re going to draft. In the same way, Obama would tell you he was a better president at the end of eight years than at the beginning. He was smart enough to learn on the job, too.

Asked whether Epstein could win a statewide race for governor or Senate in Illinois, Axelrod replied, “Yeah, he could,” but questions whether Epstein has “the desire to hold public office.”

“I think Theo would be frustrated in public office because of the situation he’s in now,” Axelrod said. “He basically has free rein to do what he needs to do for the success of the organization. That is not the case in politics—you’re seeing that with the governor in Illinois (Bruce Rauner) right now. You have to deal with legislatures and all kinds of public stakeholders. And if you’re used to making things happen, I’m not sure the Senate would be a particularly satisfying job for you. When I talked to him on my podcast...about what he might want to do next...he allowed that he might want to own a team sometime and use that team or use that platform to try to impact on a community. He clearly cares about the larger world and wants to make an impact...But there are many, many reasons I think Cubs fans can relax and enjoy the benefits of his leadership for many years to come.”