Pendleton would 'love' the opportunity

October, 31, 2011
BOSTON -- Terry Pendleton was trying to play in a charity golf tournament run by Atlanta Braves general manager Frank Wren on Monday but his cellphone kept blowing up with calls and texts about Tony La Russa retiring as manager of the St. Louis Cardinals, the team with which Pendleton began his big-league career.

"I wanted to tell them it was Tony who was retiring, not me,'' said Pendleton, who has been a coach for the Braves for the last 10 seasons, nine as hitting coach, the last as first-base coach.

Pendleton, 51, is a long way from retiring. His name has surfaced in speculation as a possible candidate to manage the Red Sox and it's logical to assume the Cardinals may come knocking as well.

Wren said Monday that the Red Sox had not yet asked for permission to interview Pendleton, but the former 1991 National League MVP said he would "love the opportunity.''

He acknowledges there is a hole on his resume, one that has come up in previous interviews for managing jobs in Philadelphia, before Charlie Manuel was hired, and Tampa Bay, when Joe Maddon was hired.

"'You've never managed anywhere before' -- I hear that a lot,'' Pendleton said.

Hiring a big-league manager without managing experience is hardly an unknown -- the last big-league manager to be hired, Robin Ventura of the White Sox, had never even coached.

"The bottom line is who will take a chance and give me an opportunity,'' Pendleton said.

Working against him, he suspects, not only in Boston but in St. Louis and possibly in Chicago with the Cubs if a job opens there, is that he does not have any history with the general managers in all three places, which means they may lack the "comfort zone" to hire him.

But if the Red Sox come calling, he said, he intends to answer.

Gordon Edes

ESPN Staff Writer



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