The purpose here is not to tell you the owners of the Red Sox have done a particularly good job running the shop these past couple of seasons.
The team was embarrassingly bad last season, in everything from innings to image. That’s a fact. And if it’s a business truism that responsibility and culpability begin at the top, then the tracks to the blame train lead directly to the offices of principal owner John Henry, chairman Tom Werner and CEO Larry Lucchino.
So if you’re a Red Sox fan with an ax to grind regarding everything from last year’s decision to hire Bobby Valentine as manager to the previous campaign’s mid-game chicken-and-beer clubhouse feasts, go ahead and blame the owners. They created the culture. They should have to answer for it.
But I’m still troubled by the perception, championed by former manager Terry Francona in his book, that the owners are cash-crazed buttinskis who do not love baseball.
Francona? Sign me up for the whole best-manager-the-Red Sox-ever-had thing. And I guarantee you he’ll do a great job as manager of the Cleveland Indians and emerge as a beloved figure on the shores of Lake Erie.
But to repeat: Why does Francona get to decide who “loves” baseball? Because he played in the big leagues? Because his father played in the bigs? It’s lunacy for Francona to think that way, and, frankly, the owners of the Indians should keep in mind that their new manager has affixed his name to a book that firebombs the owners of the last team for which he worked. Is it only a matter of time before they get scorched when Francona writes a book with the Cleveland Plain Dealer’s Paul Hoynes?
John Henry reflects on baseball memories
Boston Herald | Feb 12