Round & Round We Go John Farrell Style


“Farrell, who first asked Anthopoulos to consider the move over Thanksgiving weekend, got his wish late Saturday night when news that the Jays and Red Sox had agreed to a deal broke out of Boston — as it had over the entire process.”

So, in case there was any doubt we know for sure that Farrell asked for this.

“The Farrell mystique that was present in October 2011 when the Sox made their first arrogant attempt to steal the manager away from a division rival had largely disappeared by October 2012. The fact that Farrell did not tell Beeston and Anthopoulos he indeed wanted to stay in Toronto with the organization that gave him his first chance to manage in the big leagues, combined with the fact they were not ready to give him the extension that would have been required to keep him made the response to Boston different this year.”

Does that mean that Farrell turned down an extension???????? Hmmmmm

Some find this to be a major win for the Blue Jays:

“Sending Farrell to Boston in return for infielder Mike Aviles is the most one-sided trade in Blue Jays’ history.

It’s not nearly the biggest, and it may in the end have no real impact on the on-field product. But it is already a win.”

Wow, the rose fell of this bloom pretty quickly didn’t it??

Sandy Alomar Jr. is in the lead right?

Or is he….

“Anthopoulos said that despite numerous reports that Sandy Alomar Jr. is a top candidate to replace Farrell in Toronto he has nobody in mind at the moment.”

“I’ve read that there are guys who are front-runners for this job and so on,” he said. “There are zero front-runners.”

If you want to know who is in the field, i recommend reading Bob Elliott.

So, what does the foreign press think of the Jays, or is the those who cover the Jays, or their fans???:

“Farrell did a few funky things last year, like having his No. 3 hitter Brett Lawrie bunt in the fourth inning of a game against the Red Sox. If he’s Boston’s manager, he’d have to answer for that.”


So why aren’t the Blue Jays so upset here? Lots of people are asking the same question.

“That all may be true. But the nagging question here is, do the Blue Jays know something the Red Sox don’t? And after the Red Sox lit a fuse to their 2012 season by hiring Bobby Valentine, their track record isn’t exactly all that smooth in the managerial hiring department.”

I will admit it, I am surprised that more of the media aren’t following Steve Simmons’s lead:

“This is big business and the Blue Jays come off as small-timers here in this ugly mess of a transaction. This is major league sports and the small market Jays show themselves as little more than farm team for the large market Red Sox.”

Dont you agree Blue Jays fans? I mean forget all the BS being bantered around, the big bad Red Sox wanted out manager and we gave him up. What would you think if the Carolina Hurricanes did that to the Maple Leafs? Honest now….

In the end, isn’t this really about the Blue Jays GM?

“It’s just that this team keeps coming up small. Anthopoulos is usually pitch-perfect, but his responses to the constant stream of Farrell-to-Boston chatter that started a year ago sounded a little too credulous. He complained Sunday about “a lot of, to be completely candid, gamesmanship, that went on from a negotiating standpoint, not from our end.” He was disappointed the news leaked Saturday night from Boston’s end. As Anthopoulos put it, “We can’t control that, but that’s the game we’re in.”

i think Bruce Arthur is on to something.

“So when do the great days get here? When is Toronto someone’s dream job? When does this franchise start to truly feel like the small fish in a big pond? Of the 11 full-season managers this franchise has had, Farrell is just the fourth — along with Bobby Cox, Jim Fregosi and Jimy Williams — to manage somewhere else. It’s not that John Farrell is destined for greatness; it’s that he believes Boston might be, rather than here. And can you blame him, really? This is Toronto. The great days don’t come around much, anymore.”

Personally, i think this sums it up pretty well don’t you?

“As far as I’m concerned, I’m left with a bad taste in my mouth as well. I understand the unique set of circumstances that occurred in Boston and believe that when Farrell came to Toronto he never imagined Francona would leave the Red Sox on anything other than his own terms. The Blue Jays did get a major-leaguer for their manager, and any guy who actually contributes to wins on the field is worth more than any guy who sits in the dugout pushing all the buttons. But it still feels as though the Red Sox saw something they wanted that the Blue Jays had and without any consideration for what was happening in Toronto, came and took it.”

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October 22, 2012 8:54 am

The reason no one is following Steve Simmon’s lead is because he’s an idiot and troll.

mike in boston
mike in boston
October 22, 2012 9:10 am

Great recap TSM.

AA has had a rough year both on the field and off.

The decision to bid $30 million less than Texas on Darvish was, in my view, a mistake but his “no comment” policy led people to (justifiably) believe that the Jays were looking to add a top of the rotation starter. That never happened, and by the end of the season he had traded a bunch of prospects for a marginal back end starter in Happ. Hardly the improvement needed, and he lost credibility in the process.

The Vizquel signing turned out to be a mistake, since he was useless offensively all season. The decision not to invest in a left-fielder last off-season turned out to be a mistake, as LF was a carousel of mediocrity all year. He sold low on Snider. His big trade in getting Rasmus has not led to the results expected. None of the “name” prospects hit well in their time in the majors. The starting depth at AAA turned out to be non-existent.

An then the season ends with Yunel’s homophobic slur, AA flailing at the press conference and radio interviews. Finally, he trades his chosen manager from 2 years ago to a desperate division rival for a back up infielder who ranks as a replacement level offensive player.

mike in boston
mike in boston
October 22, 2012 9:11 am
Reply to  Derrick

the hysterical thing is that Simmons is being widely quoted by Boston media as a Toronto baseball source for all things John Farrell.

October 22, 2012 9:28 am
Reply to  mike in boston

Wasn’t Steve Simmon’s the one questioning at the end of the season the capabilities of John Farrell and his decisions during the year? You would think he would be writing what a great deal this is for Toronto to dump a bad manager on our divisional rival.
Steve Simmon’s? Toronto baseball source? That is hysterical.

Itchy Butt
Itchy Butt
October 22, 2012 10:05 am

I don’t understand the Hurricanes/Leafs analogy. It makes no sense.
Look, what does AA do, tell Farrell no, and keep him here for a year of misery? This isn’t Casey Stengel we’re talking about. Let him go. It’s not like he lit the world on fire.
Simmons is an idiot.

October 22, 2012 10:44 am

I agree with Cathal Kelly’s assessment and think a bag of balls in return would have been okay. The lack of discipline over the last month of this season reminded me of the situation the year before in Boston. It also sounds through Buster Olney that the
Jays were angry enough in this situation to consider pursuing tampering charges.

However, I am surprised that Farrell has come off so lightly in all of this. In my mind if not the architect he was clearly a key part of the orchestration of this deal. The only
comment I have seen from him was the statement issued by the Sox stating how
happy he was to be going back to Boston. I have not seen any of the usual obligatory statements thanking the Blue Jays for the opportunity to start his managing career, wishing them well, etc. Not sure if this is a case of 2+2=22 but it appears this exercise completely soured the relationship which now also appears not to have been weak.

IMHO this situation reflects more on the character of the Red Sox’ new manager than intimidation of the Jays by the Sox. Hopefully who ever comes in can instill a sense of accountability, discipline and sound fundamentals.

October 22, 2012 11:02 am
Reply to  mike in boston

This has been AAs worst year for sure, but none of the prospects in the Happ deal are expected to amount to much (and Happ looked quite good), and Hech actually hit decently for his first ABs in MLB.

October 22, 2012 11:06 am

I thought Arthur and Wilner nailed it.

I don’t mind losing Farrell at all. There were a lot of things on the field this year that I didn’t like, and a new manager could be a breath of fresh air.

It’s just the way that the Red Sox and Farrell ignored his contractual commitment here that bothers me. Not sure what else the Jays could have done here, but it doesnt sit great. Good riddance!

mike in boston
mike in boston
October 22, 2012 11:42 am
Reply to  Daniel

1. you can agree with Wilner that it’s a breath of fresh air but this doesn’t negate the fact that these two years are lost in the following sense: whatever value there is in a manager “shaping” a team is now gone. Maybe a new manager was needed, but it’s still a shame the Jays didn’t get the right guy 2 years ago. “Good riddance” isn’t really a satisfying stance when you recognize that this is the guy AA chose, and he will now choose the next guy.

2. i’m not sure they ignored his contractual commitment. they asked if the Jays would be willing to trade him, and the Jays agreed. AA could have simply said no. That’s one of the perks of being a brand-name organization. I have no problem with this. It’s up to MLB to establish the tampering rules.

I find the fact that this deal was (reportedly) done by Beeston rather than AA very interesting. Did AA refuse? Was it taken out of his hands? Did MLB’s relationship with Beeston affect anything?

mike in boston
mike in boston
October 22, 2012 11:48 am

one more thing … i’m glad Farrell is gone for one reason: he sounded ridiculous in his comments after the Yunel fiasco.

He repeatedly claimed that the messages were usually inspirational long after he both admitted he couldn’t read or understand most of them, and long after the evidence revealed that the messages were mostly crass and puerile.

At best he seriously lost control of the room. At worst he allowed a player to wear a homophobic slur on the field and lied about it afterwards.

October 22, 2012 12:55 pm
Reply to  cam

Exactly. What does this say about Farrell’s character? He could have stayed in Boston as the faithful lieutenant and waited for his opportunity. Instead he chose to commit himself to the Blue Jays for three years. Then, when the s___ hits the fan with Valentine in Boston, he decides it’s his “dream job”, and to hell with his commitment to the Blue Jays. What happened to a contract is a contract? Oh yeah, it’s pro sports, where contracts mean nothing.

October 22, 2012 1:20 pm
Reply to  mike in boston

I meant I agreed with Wilner (and Arthur) in that its not necessarily a great loss, but the way it happened leaves a bad taste in your mouth.

Yeah I fully agree that it’s now regretful they didn’t get the new guy two years ago.

October 22, 2012 2:34 pm

I doubt this story would be getting as much coverage if there was no NHL lockout and we had hockey to occupy the MSM.

October 22, 2012 3:39 pm

I thought Farrell was a so-so manager but good for him – he doesn’t have to put
up with the wussy Toronto media anymore (McCown, Brunt, Arthur, et al). While
the media here was in a gigantic hissy fit over the Escobar prank, the rest of
MLB media couldn’t have cared less.

He’s now gone to a
real sports town where they only care about if you win or lose.

Simsol Abim
Simsol Abim
October 22, 2012 4:28 pm

A few things. First, Steve Simmons is many things, but he’s not an idiot. That word gets tossed around so much it’s lost a lot of its meaning. When you say he’s an idiot, what you’re really saying is you disagree with him. He has opinions, and he has the balls to sign his name to them. Second, do you think folks in Boston should be quoting someone called Itchy Butt? Or Mike from Boston? Of course not. They quote Simmons because they know who he is. The lesson to be learned is, don’t laugh that it’s Simmons they’re talking to; question whoever they talk to. Just like you should question who Toronto writers quote when they’re writing a story from somewhere else. And last,
should anyone who signs his opinions as Itchy Butt be allowed to call someone else an idiot?

October 22, 2012 5:05 pm
Reply to  Simsol Abim

Did you read the Simmon’s article? “It was enought to make a grown man wretch”?! What self-respecting columnist writes that type of sentence?
“Me, I would have been vindictive.” Tell me Steve, is that what adults and professionals do in the world of major league sports? They get vindictive and angry? Yep, sounds like a great strategy.
Simmons is a troll and an idiot. His articles just ramble on and on with no well thought out opinion supported by any type insider insight or, heaven forbid, logic. All he knows is that Boston is stealing our manager (which he never really liked) and “I’m angry and I’m not going to take it anymore! GRRRRR!”
So no one should be taking Simmons lead.

Simsol Abim
Simsol Abim
October 22, 2012 11:04 pm
Reply to  Derrick

As a matter of fact I did read the Simmons article. It’s an opinion. Should he write something other than his opinion? The fact that you can’t accept it, or agree with it, doesn’t mean he’s an idiot or a troll. Dude, get out a little more and try to breathe through your nose from time to time.

Truck Turner
Truck Turner
October 23, 2012 3:46 am

I think the Farrell-wasn’t-worth-a-damn-so-a-bucket-of-BP-balls-is-a-fair-trade contingent are making the mistake of confusing *their* perception of John Farrell’s worth with *Boston’s* perception of his worth. For those people, what they see is a lame duck manager who had done little to warrant being kept around beyond 2013, if indeed he had lasted the whole season…hardly a certainty, given the listless, undisciplined way this team played in the second half of 2012. He was, frankly, an interchangeable scrub of a manager, likely on thin ice as it was, and as such managing to parlay his departure into the acquisition of a useful spare part could only be termed a success, right?

Well, no. It very much was not.

Here’s the thing: It doesn’t matter a good goddamn whether Farrell figured into the Jays long term plans or not. It doesn’t matter whether he was indeed worth all of the time and effort Boston put into landing him. What *does* matter is that the Boston Red Sox, having interviewed four of the most widely-touted rookie managerial prospects within the last couple of weeks, nevertheless went ten miles out of their way—coming perilously close to tampering charges in doing so—in an attempt to lure the under-contract manager of a divisional rival back into the fold. The afore-mentioned managerial prospects would have cost them nothing beyond a nominal entry-level salary…and *still* they showed up at Toronto’s doorstep, hat in hand. This, boys and girls, is what is commonly known as a high-leverage situation. They’ve already shown their hand—Christ, the World Series hasn’t even started yet, and within a week of interviewing four candidates for their managerial vacancy, they’re back at A.A.’s door mooching around for Farrell…again. In the face of all this, what does Anthopoulos manage to land in return? A hot-and-cold utility infielder. That’s it. Jesus wept.

What *we* think Farrell is worth is wholly irrelevant. What Boston thinks he’s worth is the issue here, and they clearly demonstrated that they think he’s worth a good deal more than Toronto does. Working from a position of undeniable and blindingly obvious strength, Toronto’s general manager comes back with…Mike Aviles. Oh,and gives up David Carpenter besides, lest the deal appear too enticing to Boston as is. Alex Anthopoulos might get an A for business ethics, but right now he’s looking at a generous D+ for business acumen. One of the big kids on the playground just punked him and took his wallet, and if anyone thinks the Jays’ accommodation of a desperate division rival like this is going to speak well of the organisation throughout the league, they are dreaming. This is a cutthroat, multi-billion-dollar business, and the line between developing a reputation for being “accommodating” versus being complete and utter patsies is so thin as to be transparent. The Jays aren’t really any worse for wear without Farrell in the dugout next season, but turning a high-leverage situation into a something-for-nothing-I-guess compromise isn’t a result that should please anyone with a vested interest in the success of this team.

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