FORT MYERS, Fla. –– Upon his exit from Boston, Terry Francona was a hot commodity.
After compiling a 1,296-744 record and leading the Red Sox to two championships, he went on an interviewing spree. Francona interviewed for the managerial vacancies with the Cardinals and Cubs.
The former was especially intriguing for the ex-Red Sox manager, who managed in Boston for eight years.
“The St. Louis job, I interviewed for it and I was really excited,” Francona said. “Obviously it’s a good job… when the St. Louis job didn’t work, I kind of stepped back and thought, you know what, rather than try to coach –– coaching is fun. I loved being a bench coach. It was great.”
“But I thought, you know what, maybe if I step back… just trying to be honest, my passion is being on the field. But I think it will be really healthy for me to step back and look at baseball without so much emotion. That would be good for me. I was pretty worn down by the end of last year.”
A reunion with former Red Sox general manager and current Cubs president of baseball operations Theo Epstein was also appealing to Francona. But it likely would have rehashed too many memories from Boston.
“Theo and I both knew that wasn’t the right thing for either one of us at the time,” Francona said. “Nothing against Theo or I don’t think me. The timing wasn’t right.”
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