Less than 24 hours after the Boston Red Sox concluded their 2012 season, news was released that the team had decided to fire manager Bobby Valentine after just one season at the helm.
Valentine’s job had been in jeopardy since the middle of the season and early Thursday afternoon the Red Sox finally made a decision about the once so called baseball genius. Valentine was brought to Boston to change the atmosphere inside of a clubhouse that was said to be to lax but what he did was cause more issues and lead the Red Sox to the first losing season since 1997 and their worst since 1965.
Boston finished the season last night taking a 14-2 pounding by their arch-nemesis, the New York Yankees and watching them celebrate their 18th American league East title (second consecutive) while the Red Sox have failed to reach the postseason in the past three years. Valentine led this Boston team to a 69-93 record (7-22 in September and October) but this team quit on him long before the dog days of August. He lost this locker room sometime in late May not too long before the Red Sox brass decided to trade away fan favorite Kevin Youkilis to the Chicago White Sox.
Injuries were a significant part of the problem in Boston as David Ortiz, Jacoby Ellsbury, Carl Crawford, Clay Buchholtz, Josh Beckett, Dustin Pedoria, Youkilis, John Lackey and Daisuke Matsuzaka all spent extended time on the DL this season plus Bobby Jenks and Andrew Bailey both underwent serious surgery before the season even began. In the midst of all of the injuries Boston’s front office also decided that it was time to dump salary and that is exactly what they did shipping Beckett, Crawford and Adrian Gonzalez (along with Nick Punto) to the Los Angeles Dodgers, shedding $250 million in salary in the process.
The Red Sox began the season 4-10 and didn’t climb above the .500 mark until late May but they quickly ducked right back under that mark. Recently Valentine said that certain members of his coaching staff were “disloyal” by mentioning things that were spoken about amongst themselves to members of the front office and the media.
Now that the Bobby Valentine era is over in Boston although it was just one brief, yet tumultuous season the Red Sox and their front brass much begin this off-season in the same manner which they did last year’s, in search of a manager to restore order in the clubhouse and lead this team back to the postseason.