The manager of the Blue Jays, John Farrell, served as the pitching coach for the Boston Red Sox for four seasons before taking his current post in Toronto.  Despite the team’s ERA increasing in each year of his service for the club, he is most associated with the World Series winning team of 2007, a little bit less associated with the ALCS losing team of 2008, only mildly associated with the ALDS losing team of 2009, and not really associated at all with the 2010 incarnation of the Boston Red Sox that missed the playoffs.

After unceremoniously ridding themselves of Terry Francona following the disastrous late season tumble of 2011, rumors began spreading of the Red Sox interest in bringing back the prodigal son who left the team only twelve months early to take the helm of the Blue Jays. Of course, Boston eventually settled on Bobby Valentine as their manager, but according to Nick Carfado of the Boston Globe, that didn’t happen until after the Red Sox and Toronto failed to negotiate a deal that allowed for what the Boston media would’ve without a doubt referred to as Farrell’s homecoming.

According to a major league source, there were “informal” conversations about Farrell last season at the general manager level — Theo Epstein-Alex Anthopoulos — and after Epstein left to become president of baseball operations with the Cubs, Sox ownership and Ben Cherington made a formal attempt to see if Toronto would allow Farrell to leave.

Toronto was willing to listen, but the sides never could agree on compensation. The Blue Jays, obviously, wanted a lot to allow their manager to leave for a division rival.

Ahead of the Blue Jays weekend series in Boston, it seems that what was old is new again, as rumors have popped up suggesting that the Red Sox will make Farell their number one choice to replace Bobby Valentine this off season. The same difficulties that the organization was presented with last off season will again be present this winter as the current Blue Jays manager remains signed to the team through the 2013 season.

If Boston is successful in prying away their division rival’s manager, it’s not clear what type of compensation they’ll have to pay. The Miami Marlins sent two top ten prospects from their somewhat weak system to the Chicago White Sox for manager Ozzie Guillen (as well as right-handed pitcher Ricardo Andres) after last season in Jhan Marinez and Osvaldo Martinez. However, those two teams are in separate leagues and don’t face the prospect of facing each other up to eighteen times a season.

As we’ve all noted on several different occasions, it’s rather difficult to properly quantify a manager’s value to a team, as a large portion of it is found in intangible actions. Even looking at in-game strategy only reveals a small portion of the overall picture, and I don’t think it’s something that any one can properly piece together.

However, perhaps because of our collective ignorance as to specific value, I lean toward believing individual players to be of an astoundingly higher value than any one manager. So, from the Blue Jays perspective, while in terms of optics, it may be demoralizing to a fan base that doesn’t know better, the team should be grateful for the opportunity to receive a player or two in exchange for a manager. The fact that said manager is wanted by a division rival gives the Toronto club even more of an advantage when it comes to negotiations.

Comments (48)

  1. I don’t have a great deal of faith in Farrell, doesn’t seem cut throat enough..i think we should take Bard for Farrell and offer Tito the managers job.

    • And sign Ortiz.

    • Fuck that I’m not settling for Bard when a team is wanting your Manager this bad… Jays need to make an astronomical request to 1) Get an insanely good return or 2) shut boston the fuck up and put an end this this shit rumor.

      I’m talking about throwing names like Pedroia or Ellsbury into the mix. This is a division rival begging for one of your assets, you don’t settle for a fair trade or one that has potential upside like a Bard would.

  2. Agree 100%. Unless the Jays feel that Farrell’s contribution to the clubhouse is irreplaceable (no evidence either way on this), then getting legit prospects for a manager is ok 100% of the time (see Ventura, Robin).

  3. Boston won’t give up legit prospects. A decent reliever prospect at best

  4. I don’t see the point in giving up Farrell just because you’re getting some value in return.

    If they’re willing to overpay I’d take a deal though.

    Players seem to like Farrel

  5. The whole staff can go to Boston. Bunch of losers. Fire every single one of them including the nice but getting senile butter, the hitting coach who has helped no one. ( EE had to go to robinson cano for hitting advice). The only picture to not take a step back was Morrow is who so talented he can’t help but get better. A fresh staff including manager may be just what the Jays need. We can’t get new players ( rodgers cheep fucks) so the only thing we can do is new coaches. Let the massholes have their man. In too years no one is any better for Farrell being here. Forget compensation just take his salary and we’ll call it even

    • sigh…yes, blame it on the coaches.

    • Name Change: Zero Sense

      • batter approach has not worked, this is the same pull everything guy who Cito had. Pull everything does not = high OBP. He needs to go. Matollo is an option Pitchers so misused they are dropping like flies ( yes i blame coach for letting hutch try and through harder and blow out elbow.) Base running mistakes everywhere. coco being used al all after he demonstrated he was done. No the coaches are not responsible for all injuries but there is a lot more wrong with this team than injuries

    • your spelling is almost as bad as your arguments.

    • New contender for dumbest post I’ve ever seen on this blog.

      • why don’t you morons try and attack my arguements instead of my grammer. All responses to my posts have been about spelling and none of you spell checking morons can argue any of the points. fluck yu ( spell check that)

    • Butter is senile at age 54??

      You must have ingenius insight to be able to see from where you sit that the Jays’ problems have been in the coaching staff.

  6. Trade Farrell if you can get a legit piece (either major-league ready or quality prospect) and promote Sal before we lose him.

    • Backup catcher/Manager? Sounds like a deal. He could probably hit better than some of the guys on the 25 man right now, anyway…

  7. If when this season ends Farrell declines to extend his contract beyond 2013, the Blue Jays might very well be willing to entertain trading him to the Red Sox more seriously. That would be a clear indication that he doesn’t plan to stick around longer than his current contract – which would be a huge distraction for the team all of next season. The Blue Jays would probably be wise to trade him for assets while they can and start the process of replacing him this off-season rather than next off-season.

    • The lame duck manager narrative is such a fallacy. Maybe, just maybe I could acknowledge in some rare cases the lack of a contract might affect a players performance but a Managers ability to fill out a lineup card? No fucking way.

      • It doesn’t affect his ability to fill out a lineup card, but it does affect whether the media will make it a story at every opportunity about how Farrell is not here for the long term and thus creating a distraction for the team … and it does affect how after the 2013 season when the Blue Jays theoretically should be a team in contention will have to at that point switch gears and go with a new manager. I think that if it does become clear this off-season that he will not be here after 2013, it might be better for the team to make that change sooner rather than later.

      • His lame duck status might not impact his performance, but it would certainly impact how much Boston expects to pay for him…
        Sign him to an extension THEN trade him to Boston.

  8. I’m all for it if the players coming back have actual value.. but if we’re getting two throw-in type guys who never have a hope of making it to MLB – forget it. Why do the Sox a favor? If Farrel doesn’t impress next season move on. We don’t need AAA filler. We have plenty of that.

    If we’re talking Xander Boegarts – fuck ya. Done deal. If we’re talking some combo of highly ranked prospects, and the Jays get to hit the reset button on finding a manager who understands modern baseball.. sure I say make the deal.

  9. Move Farrell to high position in player development where he belongs and bring in Fasano. Simple. If Sox offer up anything decent, let him go.

  10. Farrell seem likable and competent enough, but I say milk the Sox for every player and penny that we can get. It could be our best shot at finishing ahead of them next year, i.e., we don’t suck as much as they do, which is probably our most reasonable goal for 2013 given the state of the the AL East.

  11. When was the last time the Jays traded a player within the AL East? Roger Clemens? It’s been a while, and I would think it would take a lot to trade a manager who has two years of “inside” knowledge of the team.

    Forget the value of his managerial skills – he has a lot of inside knowledge of the Jays players, system and front office. How much is that worth, above what the Red Sox scouting department provides? Who knows…

    • I don’t think we should give up on him just yet either. Two years and he hasn’t had a stable roster to work with. The guy has seen 90 players over the last two years, I don’t blame him for being a little bit lost some times. We need a stable and effective lineup under his control to really see what kind of metal he’s made of.

  12. Rubby!! Rubby!!

    Please send him to Toronto for Farrell

  13. Dustin,
    The reporter’s name is “Cafardo.” Is there a reason why you always spell Cafardo’s name with an extra “r”? Is there a joke that I’m missing?

  14. bring back cito.

  15. I’d laugh hard if we got a top 10 piece in their system for Farrell and then threw a few kitchen sinks at Francona to get him here. i’d take him over almost any manager in baseball (especially in this “Ron Washington is the face of the finals” era)

    wouldn’t let him go for cheap, though. there is a ‘farm club’ image factor here that will look bad unless we get good value in return.

  16. Xander Bogaerts!

  17. Please trade him for compensation. You don’t get opportunities like this very often.

  18. More often than not, when you replace your manager, you end up having to replace a couple of the coaches (or most of them). Such a trade would have a big impact I believe since you’re replacing a good chunk of the staff. Would you keep Wakamatsu or would he leave? I like the idea of promoting Sal Fasano to a degree – he seems very good at developping players and perhaps his talents are best used where he is currently. Then again, with a younger team, getting him up to the MLB might be a big plus, and he would benefit from having worked with several of those players on their way up (especially pitchers). I don’t see such a trade happening, though. Within the same division, it’s always exceedingly rare.

  19. If they do decide to get rid of him, I’d like to see AA get creative — make it something bigger than just a manager for an iffy prospect. Do something like throw Romero in, and see if that’s enough to get Lester back in a challenge trade.

  20. Butter does the work of three men. Hardly senile, and you have to think would take another offer if passed by again.

  21. Players are more valuable than managers. Bring in some decent bodies, hire Robby Alomar.

    Hoist trophy.

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