Former Toronto Blue Jays coach, Brian Butterfield, stated in an interview with WEEI in Boston that he was in talks with his former team for their vacant managerial position until the very end. The Blue Jays, of course, dipped into their past and hired John Gibbons to manage the club on Monday. Butterfield followed former Blue Jays manager John Farrell to Boston in October, but remained a candidate for the manager’s job in Toronto.
Butterfield, via Rob Bradford:
“[Toronto general manager] Alex [Anthopolous] and I have a great relationship, and he stayed in contact. It basically came down to the 11th-hour,” Butterfield said from his home in Maine. “There were certain things he wanted in his next manager. When push came to shove and they were trying to narrow down the list, and Alex even told me this, he really had to have a guy who had previous major league managing experience. I felt like I was right there in the hunt at the end, just like I was in 2010 when they selected John.”
Butterfield, given his familiarity with the team and great work he did with the club’s infield defense, was considered by many observers to be an obvious successor to Farrell. Although he eventually left the Blue Jays to take a third base coach position with the Red Sox, Butterfield indicated that he was very interested in the Blue Jays job:
“My top priority as things went down after John [Farrell] left was have the possibility of being the manager of Toronto. I was given that opportunity in an interview and it was soon after that that John called and offered me the third-base coaching job with Boston. I think it was the first time in my career I feel like I was in a win-win situation. I initially wanted to manage that club in Toronto, but that didn’t work out and they wanted to go in another direction. So I could think of nothing better than to come back home and be the third-base coach of the Boston Red Sox.”
Not that anyone should be surprised that Butterfield was in play on the Blue Jays managerial position until the end, but his candidacy on the process gives us a further look into the stealthy ways of Alex Anthopolous.
Image via Toronto Star