Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Respect Due

Oh my, look at the way he's guarding that truck. Inspiring. A Roman sentinel for the modern era. Obviously he's a fan of the blog.

Can you believe Terry Francona is still awaiting a contract extension? What more must he do? He owns a couple of rings, he has averaged 94 four wins in four seasons as the Sox skipper, he has pieced together a solid working relationship with the flakiest left fielder in the history of baseball, he is adored by the bloodthirsty Boston media, and by all accounts he is a wonderful human being.

And yet the Sox front office acts as though it has doubts about his future as a successful manager. This disrespect is hardly a recent development. Last season Tito was the eighth highest-paid manager in the league, situated between the middling duo of Bruce Bochy and Phil Garner. This off season Joe Torre signed a nifty 3-year, $13 million deal with the Dodgers and all he's done of late is get bested by Tito on a regular basis. Well, that and become a noted green tea enthusiast. I realize being the eighth highest-paid manager in baseball is nothing to sneeze at, but Terry Fracona sports the highest post-season winning percentage (.710) amongst managers who have managed at least 20 post-season games and he is unsigned beyond this season. Puzzling. I'm not concerned, an extension will come, but it is long overdue.

Mr. Henry, give Tito his money. Dolla dolla bill y'all!

BNJ: You're right that this disrespect is not recent. In the Stephen King/Stewart O'Nan book Faithful, they take turns ripping Francona to shreds for no other reason than they feel like they must kill the manager. King does it mostly, which mars the good half of the book — Fanboy O'Nan just talked about getting autographs and bringing his glove to games, which spoke for itself. But anyhow, about Tito. They'll get it done. Last September's bullpen usage was masterful, setting them up for the playoffs. Yeeeeeah.

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