Jon Heyman said the following on Twitter:
Perception is, redsox ownership wants valentine. Lamont was on gm’s list. Would take quite a set for cherington to buck owners
What part of “ownership” is so difficult to understand?
The owner makes the final decision, not the GM.
No GM has full autonomy.
Yet we still see the so-called “credible” reporters interjecting opinion into the situation without a shred of understanding as to this simple fact of life.
Epstein himself wanted Terry Francona back with the Red Sox and has said he would’ve stayed for the final year of his contract had Francona’s options been exercised. Francona was tired both emotionally and physically; the ownership and upper hierarchy (see Larry Lucchino) were unhappy with multiple aspects of what transpired with the Red Sox all year long and culminated in the humiliating collapse; and they wanted to make a change.
That’s their right as the owners and top-tier management.
To think that if John Henry, Tom Werner and Lucchino want Bobby Valentine and it’s “going to take a set” for Cherington to bypass ownership’s desires is pure idiocy. Cherington’s not hiring anyone that he’s not allowed to hire and if it’s Lamont instead of Valentine, then everyone is onboard with the decision.
Could it be that Lucchino is seeing an opportunity to regain the control he lost as a result of Epstein’s success as GM?
Could it be that they don’t want to follow that same path of middle-manager to whom the players might not listen with a Lamont instead of Valentine?
Could they want someone with a personality who’s going to energize a livid fan base and have the cachet to stand up to the bullying of Josh Beckett?
Are they wrong to make their collective presence felt in an important hire?
The Red Sox could be ruminating on the decision or they might want to have a fallback plan so they can keep Valentine’s contract as reasonable as possible. If they eliminate all other candidates, then Valentine might feel emboldened in the negotiations to ask for more money.
I remember Gene Lamont‘s understated personality as a manager with the White Sox and Pirates to be eerily similar to that of Francona. Doesn’t hiring the same type of individual defeat the purpose of making the change?
If the Red Sox try to scrimp and save a few bucks or avoid the Bobby V package and those are the only reasons they choose Lamont over him, then they’re making a terrible mistake. It doesn’t necessarily mean that Lamont won’t work—he’s a qualified baseball man and experienced manager—but the why is important.
They might hire Lamont; they might hire Valentine; I’m thinking that Cherington’s preference would’ve been Torey Lovullo.
But don’t think that Cherington will “buck” ownership in the managerial decision.
Because he won’t.