Mike Hazen’s decision to leave the Boston Red Sox could have implications beyond the team’s front office vacancy.
The Arizona Diamondbacks officially named Hazen as general manager Sunday, ending his decade-long tenure in Boston that most recently included a stint as the Red Sox’s general manager under president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski.
One of Hazen’s first orders of business in Arizona will be finding a new manager after the team fired skipper Chip Hale on Oct. 3. One potential candidate is Red Sox bench coach Torey Lovullo, with whom Hazen had a close relationship with while in Boston. In a conference call Monday, Dombrowski admitted he’s expecting Hazen and the D-Backs to pursue Lovullo as a candidate.
“I’ll be surprised, I would say, if they don’t ask for permission to talk to Torey,” Dombrowski said. “I know how highly we think of him and how highly Mike thinks of him. But that would have to be something that Mike would answer.”
Lovullo does have managerial experience, going 28-21 as in 49 games as Boston’s interim manager in 2015 while manager John Farrell underwent treatment for cancer. Dombrowski believes his bench coach is capable of being in the role full-time.
“In my opinion, he’s ready to be a major league manager,” Dombrowski said. “Would he end up being their top selection? I can’t answer that. But we would not stand in his way (for the Diamondbacks) to interview him.”
Yet the Red Sox’s immediate focus still is in replacing Hazen’s GM post. Dombrowski said Monday he’ll consider internal candidates for the position first and plans on conducting those interviews this week. He also didn’t rule out hiring someone from outside the organization.
“I don’t have any specific timeframe (for hiring Hazen’s replacement),” Dombrowski said. “I think you’re always in a spot where you’d rather do it sooner than later, but I also don’t want to rush a decision that you don’t think is the right one.”
Thumbnail photo via David Richard/USA TODAY Sports Images