The Boston Red Sox suffered the worst collapse in history towards the end of the 2011 season, causing the firing of Terry Francona after eight years with the team.
The Red Sox thought replacing Francona with Bobby Valentine for the 2012 season would fix the fall of the team, but the Red Sox ended up even worse off than the previous year. Following the 2012 season, the Red Sox let Valentine go and hired former Red Sox pitching coach and Toronto Blue Jays manager, John Farrell.
After multiple years of missing the MLB playoffs, the Red Sox are ready to get back into playing baseball in October.
However, it’s not that easy. The Red Sox struggles were cause both by under-performing athletes and lack of leadership from the veteran players, coaches and front office. The Red Sox think they have fixed the issue in the clubhouse by making the ‘mega-trade’ last season, hiring Farrell as the teams manager, and adding role players like Mike Napoli, Jonny Gomes and Shane Victorino.
Although the front office, ownership, and Red Sox Nation want a World Series in 2013, it will be a tough season for the Red Sox to even make the postseason, let alone head all the way to the World Series. Not to say that it can’t and won’t be done, but it’s just a simple fact that the American League East is one of toughest divisions in baseball this season.
The Red Sox aren’t in a ‘rebuilding’ year, but they are in as close to one as you can get and still be a contender.
Therefore, Farrell won’t be held to as high of a standard of winning as Valentine and Francona were, at least not yet. The Red Sox will give Farrell a year or two get his feet wet before handing out punishments like the ones that hit his predecessors. Farrell will be given the opportunity to win with a roster of role players, young players, and a few key star players.
However, if he doesn’t make the postseason, he will still have the reins come 2014. The Red Sox just need to avoid most the drama from the past few seasons for Farrell to keep his job.