Though the Red Sox were abruptly escorted out of the 2016 postseason, manager John Farrell will return to manage the club next season, Evan Drellich of the Boston Herald reports. Red Sox president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski said, “John Farrell will be our manager for 2017. He is all set and his whole staff will be invited back.”
As for 2018, Dombrowski said, “Something of that magnitude I need to sit down with ownership and discuss that,” as Dellich reports.
In Farrell’s four years with the Red Sox, the club has gone 339-309 (.523), winning the World Series in 2013, finishing in fifth place in the AL East in 2014 and ’15, and winning the AL East this season.
It’s been a strange season for Red Sox’ third baseman Pablo Sandoval, who lost his starting role in spring training, went 0-for-6 in three regular season appearances, and underwent season-ending surgery to repair a torn labrum in his left shoulder in May. That was the last the Red Sox were supposed to hear about Sandoval until spring 2017, when he was expected to rejoin the team after a lengthy rehab stint in Florida.
On Saturday, manager John Farrell was telling a different story. Per MLB.com’s Sam Blum, Farrell hinted that Sandoval could return to the team as soon as October, albeit in a very limited capacity.
At the time of the surgery, it was all looking at the start of next Spring Training,” Farrell said. “We’re not getting too far ahead of ourselves here, but at the same time, we compliment him for the work he’s put in, the way he’s responded to the rehab, the way he’s worked himself into better condition. We’re staying open-minded.
If the 30-year-old does return in 2016, don’t expect him to look like the three-home run hitter of the 2012 World Series. Should the Red Sox lose another player to injury, Sandoval might be called on as a backup option, but he’s unlikely to see substantial playing time under any other circumstances. Despite making two appearances at DH in the instructional league, Sandoval has not started at third base since undergoing surgery, though Farrell noted that a return to third base would be the next logical step in his recovery process.
Sandoval has yet to hit his stride within the Red Sox’ organization after hitting career-worst numbers in 2015. According to FanGraphs, his Offensive Runs Above Average (Off) plummeted to -20.2, contributing approximately two wins fewer than the average offensive player in 2015. (The Diamondbacks’ Chris Owings held the lowest Off mark in 2015, with -26.3 runs below average.) Sandoval has not appeared in a postseason race since the Giants’ championship run in 2014.
Heading into Saturday evening, the Red Sox could clinch their spot in the postseason with a win over the Rays and an Orioles’ loss.
Doctors have determined that Red Sox manager John Farrell’s cancer is in remission, the team announced.
The good news comes three weeks after new team president Dave Dombrowski made it clear that Farrell would remain the manager in 2016. Farrell took a leave of absence from mid-August through the end of the season to receive treatment for non-Hodgkin’s Burkitt lymphoma and bench coach Torey Lovullo served as interim manager.
Here’s what Farrell said today in a statement:
I am extremely thankful for the outpouring of support I have received from the Red Sox, my family, friends, and fans throughout this process. I am also especially thankful for the talented doctors who cared for me in Detroit and here at MGH.
Lovullo will remain with the Red Sox as Farrell’s bench coach, bypassing opportunities to interview for managerial openings.