Things move fast and furious in real time. As we watched the Red Sox managerial search unfold, we were first confused about the shift away from the team’s early focus on Dale Sveum and guys like him and onto experienced candidates like Gene Lamont and Bobby Valentine.
But as Alex Speier writes in an in-depth and well-reported piece over at WEEI, there was a method — of sorts — to that madness. And once you read it you’ll get a sense of how the team’s thinking shifted over the course of November until the finally landed their Bobby V. yesterday.
An assist, of course, goes to the front office who, while it was not so simple and crass as a lot of us have been suggesting, did steer things toward an experienced manager. A less expected assist goes to Gene Lamont of people, who helped convince Ben Cherington that, yes, an experienced guy would be nice, even if it wasn’t Lamont himself.
A great read and some great background on how a big league managerial search goes.
Rick Morissey of the Chicago Sun-Times published an article on Sunday giving a bit of insight into Cubs president of baseball operations Theo Epstein. When Epsten was younger, he dabbled in sportswriting, but quickly realized the trade wasn’t for him.
As Morissey details, when Epstein was 19 years old writing for Yale’s student newspaper, he wrote an article suggesting the school’s football coach should be fired during what would become a 3-7 season. Epstein was told during the meeting that one writer would defend the coach and one would call for his job. “It was a lesson in the way that the world of journalism sometimes works. It was an eye-opener for me. I regret it, and I’ve happily moved on.”
Epstein continued, “I realized I didn’t want to be a sportswriter when I was interning with the Orioles back in ’92, ’93, ’94. I did do a lot of media-relations stuff, and I saw that the life of a sportswriter is pretty lonely. You kind of work by yourself, sit there by yourself in the press box, go back to the hotel bar. Not to generalize.” He added, “But I really respect writing and respect sportswriters.”
He’s not wrong, and he seems to have found his calling as a front office executive. His Cubs are back in the World Series for the first time since 1945.
Indians second baseman Jason Kipnis tweeted on Sunday, “Got a little too close to [Francisco Lindor] during the celebration!! Freak accident but should be good to go by Tuesday! #cantkeepmeoutofthisgame!”
Per MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian, manager Terry Francona said Kipnis is dealing with a low ankle sprain, but he’s expected to be ready to go when the World Series begins on Tuesday. Kipnis went through fielding drills on Sunday.
Kipnis is hitting .167/.219/.367 with a pair of homers and four RBI in eight games this postseason.