The Sox are getting a lot of heat over the length of time it took them to pick a manager -- two months, for the record (and counting, we must add, since the deal is not done).

It took the St. Louis Cardinals nine days to replace the most venerable manager in the game. So perhaps some criticism of the process is justified. (St. Louis also had more time to think about it beforehand.)

The story will be spun as, "We wanted the right fit," "We had to have a group meeting and all agree," or some such. That is probably true, but I think there's another story here. The Sox wanted to drag their feet -- at the very least, they saw no harm in dragging their feet.

When you consider what the Sox have spent, what happened in September, and their apparent willingness to scapegoat almost everybody at the end of the season (though no more, we hope), it's not surprising that management would stall. At a couple of points, they said all signings hinge on what happens with David Ortiz, but they have not been aggressive in their pursuit of Ortiz.

We can't rule out simple inertia, but this feels different to me. It feels like they're sending a signal -- "Do you want to play here? Do you really want to play here? Show us." If I'm reading this correctly, then Bobby Valentine was smart to be so vocal about wanting the job.

(Graphic borrowed from these nice people.)

Jim Corrigan 11/30/2011 06:07:00 PM Edit
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