Bobby Valentine is probably the last guy who would argue that Major League Baseball managers aren’t influential to the outcomes of games. But that’s what it sounds like he’s implying when he says nobody could have resurrected last year’s 69-93 Red Sox.
Valentine is starting a new job this week as the athletic director at Sacred Heart University, and that has included taking more questions about last season in Boston. While Valentine has previously defended his role in one of the worst letdowns a major league team has had in years, he took it to a new level this time.
“I thought I did a [heck] of a job in Boston,” Valentine said, according to WEEI. “I thought what had to be done there was done except for winning a pennant. But [Hall of Fame manager] Connie Mack wasn’t going to win with that team.”
While Valentine may have a point about the team’s inability to win, him saying that he did everything but get the pennant is something else. The Red Sox battled through dysfunction and many injuries, but they were expected to at least be close to a playoff team with their talent, not finish with 69 wins. Valentine has also been given blame for creating distractions as the team failed to get itself to even .500.
Valentine, who was praised throughout his managerial career for his tactical abilities, is now brushing off the impact of his managing — and putting the whole experience behind him.
“It’s six months of a 62-year life,” he said. “It’s six months of a 42-year career in baseball. It’s a blip, a little spot on the radar, as far as I’m concerned.”
Valentine had told the Boston Herald on Monday that he didn’t want to talk more about his Red Sox tenure, chalking up criticism to “stupid things that stupid people say.”
Valentine was fired a day after the season ended. The Red Sox then brought in John Farrell, the man many people thought could have kept the Sox on a winning track in 2012 after Terry Francona finished his time in Boston.