The Guru
Contributing Writer

Terry Francona returns to Fenway Park for the first time as an opposing team's manager tonight. While it may be an emotional return for the former manager, it will be business as usual for this current group of Red Sox.

When asked if there was anything planned for his former manager and cribbage rival second baseman Dustin Pedroia said, "Nothing, I got nothing. He knows what people think of him. But we played against [the Indians] already. That part is not a big deal."

Asked if he knew Francona's upstart Indians are in first place Pedroia said, "Are they playing good? We're about the Red Sox, man. That's it."

Pedroria did concede, "It'll be good to see him."

The current resident of Francona's former corner office, Red Sox manager John Farrell, said he expects Tito will get a big welcome.

"I would fully expect he'd get a great welcome and a great ovation and deservedly so."

Farrell, who served as Francona's pitching coach in Boston, said he and his former boss, "don't have time to talk anymore." Joking, "he’s winning every day. He’s too busy answering questions about how they’re doing.”

But Farrell acknowledges tonight's game will be special for Francona, "That was eight incredible years that he spent here."

David Ortiz, who had a front row seat for all of those years, said, "I believe he's going to get a big ovation. I'm 100 percent sure. Tito, when he was our manager, he did a great job and it doesn't matter what happened afterward, he still got us to two World Series and that is something that hasn't happened in a long time. People don't forget that."

While Ortiz was praising one former skipper, he also took the time to jab another former manager who-shall-not-be-named when asked about the Indians hot start, "They're playing well, man. I mean, at least they have a manager who knows what he's doing. You know what I'm saying?"

Big Papi, we read you loud and clear.

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The Guru 5/23/2013 12:08:00 PM Edit
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