FORT MYERS, Fla. — John Farrell had two distinct advantages working in his favor when he was named manager of the Red Sox in October: Who he was and, maybe just as importantly, who he was not.
As the Red Sox set out to remake their team following the historic mess that was the 2012 season, finding a manager who could help bind a fractured organization was critical.
When the Sox fired Terry Francona after the 2011 season, they repeated the classic mistake so many teams make by seeking a manager who was completely different than the one they had.
Francona was a good communicator who had established ties throughout the organization and had a close relationship with the players. In the end, perhaps, he was too close and the players took advantage of that relationship. Francona admitted on his way out of Fenway Park that the team needed to hear a new voice.
In Bobby Valentine, the Red Sox went with an older, more authoritarian figure with no connection to the franchise. The hope was that Valentine would bring discipline to the team and new ideas. The Sox instead got worse.
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