Credit Where Credit is Due

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In appreciation of the job that Terry Francona has done for the Red Sox, and in the face of mounting criticism (from at least one person, not a Sox fan) over my simultaneous arrogance and ignorance regarding Tito’s accomplishments, I thought I would take some time to research our dear field leader’s greatest hits and present those things that he does well.  After all, everyone needs a hug now and then, even a highly paid baseball manager.  So herewith are the Top 10 best decisions (of many, admittedly, too numerous to list) made by Terry Francona in the 3 years of his Boston tenure:

1. Gave Dave Roberts that green light.
2. 2004 Playoffs pitching management, sheer brilliance.
3. Showed faith in Kevin Youkilis to play full-time at first base.
4. Continues to bat David Ortiz 3rd.
5. Wore "Gay-Rod" tee shirt under uniform during recent series in the Bronx.
6. Turned down maraschino cherry on ice cream sundae during weekend trip to Toscanini’s.
7.  Got off the Pike at Allston/Cambridge exit on rush-hour trip to Fenway after listening to traffic report and learning of accident in Pru tunnel.
8.  Prefers New England Clam Chowder to bastard cousin, Manhattan Clam Chowder.
9.  Voted incessantly for American Idol dead-ender Elliot Yamin.
10.  Legally added an "h" at the end of "Francona" to feel more like the locals.

Now who says we never give him credit for anything?!

15 comments… add one
  • “10. Legally added an “h” at the end of “Francona” to feel more like the locals.”
    I could’ve sworn (especially after my recent trip back home) that he changed the ‘a’ to an ‘er’…
    maybe it’s just me.

    Mayday Malone June 13, 2006, 10:48 am
  • okay, so seriously…you can gnitpick his lineups till the cows come home but can’t think of ANYTHING other than playing youkilis at first base that he’s done right this season? anything at all?

    beth June 13, 2006, 10:49 am
  • Is there a person in the world who prefers the Manhattan clam chowder to the New England kind? If so, I’v never met him/her.
    You might want to give Francona credit for giving Paps the closer job. It was a gamble, especially considering it had the potential to really alienate one player, and Terry handled it quite well.

    Nick-YF June 13, 2006, 10:54 am
  • still can’t believe it’s YFs who are coming up with positives about francona here.
    francona has managed arguably the weakest team of his tenure in boston to a 1st place position in june. he’s navigated injuries, personnel changes, newcomers and veterans. he’s the perfect personality for the pressure cooker of boston media and fan scrutiny, and personlly i think that’s the most important thing. because the most important moments in which he plays a key role are 99.9% of the time moments we will never, ever, ever know about. we have no idea what goes on in that clubhouse; we have no idea what kinds of situations francona has to negotiate. we’ve gone from a team of “idiots” with a bunch of wily veterans and not a little drama, esp. between curt and pedro and god knows who else to a redeveloping team with a bunch of rookies, a few vets whose jobs are threatened, in a newly competitive division w/r/t the blue jays, and still, the team is in first place. since he’s been here, the team has been in or contending closely for first place. sometimes you gotta look at the forest rather than the trees.

    beth June 13, 2006, 11:09 am
  • Beth, lighten up is all I can say. What part of this joke don’t you get? Was the Elliot Yamin reference too subtle?

    SF June 13, 2006, 11:12 am
  • Like SF, I have often looked at Francona’s moves and wondered, “does he want to lose?” Then I say a short prayer that it would be so.
    Read SF’s post closely, and the truth is made clear.
    Exhibit A: “Turned down maraschino cherries..” Maraschino cherries originated in Nothern Italy (traditionally, they are cherries preserved in marasca, a liqueur flavored by cherries of the same name.) Francona claims to be of Italian origin, yet he would shun a delightful treat from his homeland. Suspicious.
    Exhibit B: “Prefers New England style chowder.” The word “chowder” comes from “chaudiere,” a French word for an iron soup kettle and forms of chowder likely appeared first in French fishing villages before migrating to North America. The evidence mounts.
    Exhibit C: “Francona added an h..” to his name (or possibly strike a, sub er) to fit in with the locals. Why is Tito adding more letters to his name? Anyone who has had the pleasure of visiting a bah in southie on the 5th of the month, or the 20th, or on Friday, or on any day that ends in “y”, knows the musical lilt of the New Englander requires no phonetic assistance to turn our harsh, germanic tongue into “the singin’ of the angels.” So what are the extra letters for? To misdirect attention from “Franc”, French currency so nicknamed for the latin “francorum rex,” (king of the Franks) inscribed on it’s face on early coins.
    Frenchmen, who you call upon to make fun of your food, steal your wife, teach babies how to smoke cigarettes, and lose wars.
    Now we have you, sir. Terry Francona is a Frenchman masquerading as an Italian-American who is bent on the desctruction of the Red Sox, and is making deliberate efforts to sabotage (more French!!!) the team. Quod erat demonstrandum.
    Unfortunately, he is failing in his typical french way even in the attempt at failure, and Boston is still in first place. Merde.

    attackgerbil June 13, 2006, 12:39 pm
  • Not to jump in on the Tito post w/some Yankee news but I think it is of some importance. The Nats have informed Cashman that they are willing to trade Soriano if Phillip Hughes is included in the deal. I say Cash does not let young Phil go. However if this week sees the 4 game current slide extend all bets are off. King George might overide. If it happens I will not be disappointed. He has adapted well to playing the outfield, he has 23 HRs despite playing in one of the worst hitters’ parks in the majors, and his OBP is a respectable .361, which is an improvement for him. What do you guys think?

    bloodyank78 June 13, 2006, 12:50 pm
  • BY78: What’s his K/BB? Also, no f’ing way you trade Hughes. Period. Not when your rotation looks more and more like a geriatrics convention.

    yankeemonkey June 13, 2006, 1:03 pm
  • Correction; above I stated I would not be disappointed if it happens. I should have said “I will not be disappointed if it happens in some way that does not involve letting go of Phillip Hughes.”

    bloodyank78 June 13, 2006, 1:05 pm
  • YM, I posted my correction before I read your post. I’m in full agreement, no way you let a 19 year old who is tearing up AA ball go. Don’t know what Sori’s K/BB ratio is but it’s just tempting to get another heavy bat back in the lineup.

    bloodyank78 June 13, 2006, 1:13 pm
  • Hughes has encountered some difficulty at AA. He has a 4.79 ERA there. I’m not saying this to support the idea of trading him. Just a statement of fact.
    Soriano’s been pretty great this year, and surprisingly so. He’s about the only hitter who’s figured out Washington’s pitcher frendly ball-park, a remarkable feat (albeit in a small sample of games). You wonder if the transition from second has aided his offensive game. Maybe the stress of that position distracted him. In any case, he’s on pace for his best season ever. He might actually shed statheads label of him as the most over-rated player in baseball.

    Nick-YF June 13, 2006, 1:22 pm
  • He may also be benefiting from it being a contract year for him.

    walein June 13, 2006, 1:48 pm
  • i keep telling you SF, we got terry for the express purpose of dominating interleague play. a pure tactician, managing to get the most out of our second tier players. nobody in the game does better with the double switch or managing utility players than tito. something the sox have sorely needed.

    sf rod June 13, 2006, 3:07 pm
  • //Beth, lighten up is all I can say. What part of this joke don’t you get? Was the Elliot Yamin reference too subtle?//
    i guess i thought at first you might actually be offering some balance in this post. it wasn’t that i didn’t understand the sarcasm. i was just disappointed by it.

    beth June 13, 2006, 6:32 pm
  • Does anyone really prefer Manhattan Clam Chowder to New England Clam Chowder? That tomato-based crap does my native island a disserve with its name.

    Benjamin Kabak June 14, 2006, 3:06 am

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