Francona: Let the offseason play out

November, 23, 2010
Boston Red Sox manager Terry Francona was a guest on the Dale and Holley program on Boston sports radio station WEEI on Tuesday and discussed the news that Victor Martinez would be leaving Boston for Detroit.

“When guys get to free agency, there are a lot of decisions that have to be made,” Francona said. “One is by the player, one is by the organization and one is by other teams. Sometimes it doesn’t work out where a guy comes back, but that doesn’t mean we’re not going to be any good. I feel real confident. The winter has to play itself out, it’s just beginning and it will be really interesting.”

While some fans might be steamed over the fact that the Red Sox were outbid by the Tigers for Martinez, Francona seemed to understand his team’s decision-making process.

“Being a manager is a little different than having to be the caretaker for the organization and looking at it four years down the road. So I try not to lose sight of that,” Francona said. “Wanting Victor in the lineup next April is a no brainer, but when you have to make the decision and you’re talking $40-, $45-, $50 million four years down the road that’s not quite as easy. And I respect that.”

Martinez’s absence leaves a big hole in the Red Sox lineup, with another hole potentially coming if Adrian Beltre signs elsewhere. Nevertheless, Francona was confident that Theo Epstein and Co. would build him a team he can win with in 2011.

“Theo and those guys, they’ll find a way to put a team together that we feel good about,” Francona said. “For all the hoopla last year about not enough offense and everybody had a field day with that ... a lot of things went wrong and we won 89 games. Eighty-nine games isn’t good enough but I think you understand my point. We’re not going to go away. Our guys in baseball ops will figure out a way to put a team on that field that when we go down to Fort Myers we’ll be excited about.”



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