A few months after the knee-jerk dismissal of Terry Francona, the Red Sox' exhaustive search for a new manager has ended. Apparently the answer to the Sox' problems is the guy who managed the 2002 Mets. Bobby Valentine.
Valentine brings a massive ego to the Red Sox clubhouse, which will certainly bring a change to the atmosphere. And I suppose any change in there has potential to be good change. But this is a guy that the Mets got rid of. What else can we salvage from the '02 Mets? Pedro Astacio? Edgardo Alfonzo? Jay Payton?
Valentine hasn't managed a Major League team in 9 years. He managed a few seasons in Japan, so maybe he can communicate with Daisuke about Tokyo's notoriously bad traffic jams.
Valentine enters a situation that does seem to require a headstrong personality. And he has that. He's an Alpha, at least in his own mind. But if the Sox' players tuned out a man with Francona's respectability and resume, will they take Valentine seriously? And won't guys like Josh Beckett know that Valentine's job security depends on Beckett's behavior? So has the power-dynamic in the clubhouse changed at all?
It doesn't look like it has.
Ultimately, I don't feel as though the manager has much of an impact on the W-L columns. If the Sox do well in 2012, it will be because they pitched well, hit well, and fielded well. Not because Valentine managed well.
I don't take Bobby Valentine seriously, though. He's a joke. The latest joke in what has become nothing but a reality TV show on Yawkey Way.