Baltimore Orioles: Over-accepting of the status quo?
One of the Baltimore Orioles’ big time foes made what I feel was a big mistake yesterday. The Boston Red Sox released manager John Farrell, and are now hunting for a new manager. Farrell took the BoSox to the playoffs on numerous occasions, and of course won the 2013 World Series as the skipper in Boston.
That’s a resume that should make Farrell an attractive candidate for a managerial position with another team. I said that it should make Farrell an attractive candidate; much is being made of the toxic clubhouse culture that seemed to ensue in Boston, to which he apparently either turned a blind eye or openly allowed to continue. Luckily when you look at the Orioles and Buck Showalter, none of that has ever been an issue.
Boston did what they did, and in fact this particular ownership group seems to have a history of that nature in Boston. Everyone remembers them cutting Grady Little situation where Pedro Martinez told him not to remove him from a play off game. He didn’t, Boston lost, and Little was out. Then there was Terry Francona‘s departure after the 2011 season, which seemed to come as a result of similar clubhouse angst among other things. And in between Francona and Farrell, Boston had Bobby Valentine for one season – which was an abomination by anyone’s standards.
Point being, management decided that the guy in charge wasn’t the guy to lead the team any longer, and they made an immediate change. The Orioles don’t always do that. Many people said that Dave Trembley and Sam Perlozzo were allowed to stay much longer than they otherwise should have. It also became apparent very quickly that Mike Hargrove wasn’t going to be able to take the franchise anywhere years ago, yet he finished his contract out.
And yes, if you can believe it, there are people now who would like to see the O’s go the Boston route and let go of Buck Showalter. This is a very small, but vocal minority. And it started after last year’s situation in the AL Wild Card game where he never used Britton. Yes, people want to totally discount from where the Orioles have come under Showalter, simply because of one incident and subsequent season gone awry.
So which do you prefer? Boston’s way, or the Orioles’? Speaking for myself, I’d be on board with how Peter Angelos honors contracts. That’s not to say that he’s never fired managers, but for the most part he wants to keep his word in terms of what he agreed to when he signed the guy. However Boston would argue that the urgency to win today is greater than any one person or group. So if the current guy isn’t the guy, cut him loose – now.
I maintain that Farrell should still be the manager there. A new manager is an unknown commodity in any situation. They thought they were getting something special with Valentine – couldn’t have been more further off than they were. Needless to say, it’ll be interested to see who ends up in the dugout up there. Incidentally, Philadelphia may have just found their new manager.