As the Toronto Blue Jays finished the season with a 73-89 record, finishing fourth in the AL East, all of the talk since has been surrounding Jays manager John Farrell and the last place Boston Red Sox.
Boston, finishing with their worst franchise record since 1965, just recently fired their manager, Bobby Valentine, after the abysmal 2012 campaign. Red Sox ownership did not hesitate to fire Valentine quickly, as he lasted a mere fourteen hours as manager when the season came to a close.
Being forced to find a new manager for the second straight offseason, Ben Cherington and Larry Lucchino made it obvious that this hiring will be far more swift than the two-month managerial search last offseason.
There seems to be a list of options currently in the hands of Cherington and ownership, but the one name that has been popping up continuously has been Blue Jays manager John Farrell. Farrell, 50, has managed the Jays for two seasons and holds a record of 154-170.
Serving as the Red Sox pitching coach from 2006-2010, Farrell is widely known in Boston for helping to develop pitchers such as Jon Lester and Clay Buchholz, development that has yet to be seen since his departure. His reputation with pitching alongside the familiarity with the Boston organization has made Farrell a prized name to Red Sox ownership.
Last offseason, Boston also discussed the availability of Farrell, but the Blue Jays asked for Clay Buchholz in return for compensation. As a result, Boston immediately ended discussions due to the heavy return price, but the price may still be high.
Regardless, it is very difficult to predict the amount of success Farrell will have with Boston if Toronto allows him to be manager, which is why Toronto should try to make this deal happen.
Should Toronto trade John Farrell
Alex Anthopoulos, the Blue Jays' general manager, will undoubtedly inquire about an MLB-ready youngster in the Red Sox's organization, which Boston may just force themselves to follow up on out of desperation for getting their top-choice manager.
It would not be totally out of range to see Toronto receive Daniel Bard, who struggled heavily this past season after a failed conversion to the starting rotation, but still has plenty of potential to pitch effectively. As a matter of fact, any young player in return for an unproven manager would be an absolute steal for Anthopoulos and the Jays.
Farrell has not had much success with the organization and lacks the abilities to develop young pitchers that Boston seemingly believes he has. If you want an example of how he has dealt with young pitching, look no further than Ricky Romero. This is not to say that Farrell is to blame at all for Romero's disappointing season, but he sure did not do anything to better Romero.
The departure of Farrell even allows the Blue Jays to bring in Sandy Alomar Jr. in as the manager, who they have reportedly have had keen interest in since Boston expressed interest in their current skipper.
So to look at this very briefly, Toronto would be giving away one year with John Farrell in exchange for a young pitching prospect and Sandy Alomar Jr. as the new manager? They may not be winning a World Series next weekend, but that is a no-brainer for Toronto.
If Boston actually decides to go through with the compensation, that is absolutely foolish on their part, but the interest in Farrell seems very serious in comparison to other options currently out there. Would Ben Cherington give up any young player for an unproven manager? It is difficult to say, but Toronto should take anything they can get quickly and move on to pursuing Sandy Alomar Jr. as their next manager.