After back-to-back early postseason exits in the ALDS, the Red Sox decided to part ways with manager John Farrell. There was already speculation before the dismissal that Farrell was on the hot seat, and the rumor mill has only picked up speed now that Boston’s search has officially begun. President of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski will now have his first opportunity to personally hire a manager since joining the Red Sox in the summer of 2015.
As we’ve done with the Tigers, Mets, and Phillies, we’ll begin to house all of the managerial chatter for the Red Sox in one place and update accordingly as candidates either further their case or are removed from consideration. Here’s where Boston’s search stands, at present:
- The club is expected to conduct a second round of interviews before making any offers of employment, per Evan Drellich of NBC Sports Boston (via Twitter). There’s a sense inside the organization, though, that Cora is the front-runner, Drellich further writes. ESPN.com’s Buster Olney (Twitter link) hears that both Cora and Ausmus are “at the center of conversations,” with expectations being that it won’t take long to name a new manager.
Will Interview/Have Interviewed
- Recently departed Tigers skipper Brad Ausmus has interviewed for the position, as Chad Jennings of the Boston Herald reported on Twitter and we covered further in another post.
- Astros bench coach Alex Cora is expected to interview with the Sox on Sunday, Dan Shaughnessy of the Boston Globe reports. He’s Boston’s top candidate for the job, per Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic (on Twitter). Cora is also expected to interview for the Tigers and Mets openings. Though Cora is still in the midst of his first coaching stint on a big league staff, the 41-year-old has long been considered a promising managerial candidate, previously receiving interviews for openings with the Diamondbacks, Marlins, Nationals and Padres in recent years. Cora enjoyed a 14-year career in the big leagues (including a stint with the Red Sox from 2005-08) before moving on to work as an analyst for ESPN and ESPN Deportes, and as a general manager in the Puerto Rican Baseball League.
- The Red Sox have requested the Diamondbacks’ permission to interview bench coach Ron Gardenhire, Rosenthal tweets; he’s expected to chat with the team later this week, per Pete Abraham of the Boston Globe (via Twitter). The former Twins manager is one of the “final three” candidates for the job, according to Charley Walters of the St. Paul Pioneer Press (via Twitter)
Preliminary Candidates (Interview Status Unknown)
- In addition to Ausmus, Indians first base coach Sandy Alomar Jr., Dodgers bench coach Bob Geren, Giants hitting coach Hensley Meulens have all been mentioned as likely or speculative candidates by several reporters (including Peter Abraham of the Boston Globe, NBCSports.com’s Evan Drellich and the Boston Herald’s Chad Jennings). Ausmus may be a particular name to watch, as Dombrowski hired him as Detroit’s manager after the 2013 season and (according to Peter Gammons) Ausmus delivered a very strong performance when interviewing for Boston’s last managerial opening in the 2012-13 offseason.
Not in the Mix/No Longer in Consideration
- Current members of the Red Sox coaching staff have been told that they are free to look for jobs outside the organization. When asked if an internal candidate could be hired, Dombrowski said “most likely not, but I’m not going to say for sure not.” This would more or less seem to rule out names like bench coach Gary DiSarcina, hitting coach Chili Davis or third base coach Brian Butterfield, who have all been linked to previous managerial openings in the past.
- Dombrowski also expressed a preference for candidates with past managerial or coaching experience on a Major League staff, so longtime Red Sox catcher and current Dombrowski special assistant Jason Varitek doesn’t seem to be in the running.