Blue Jays: There’s no place for Farrell in Toronto
Noted baseball writer, Peter Gammons, sent out a tweet on Thursday suggesting that John Farrell could probably come and work for Mark Shapiro and the Blue Jays if he wants to now that he’s been relieved of his duties in Boston. Let me be among the first to say, no thanks.
As you may have missed earlier in the week, the Boston Red Sox relieved John Farrell of his managerial duties, ending a five year run for the bench boss. As you likely remember, Farrell was the Blue Jays manager for the 2011-12 seasons, before leaving to take over the helm in Boston.
Coincidentally, I wrote about Farrell leaving the Blue Jays just one day before he was let go of his post in Boston, and I was asking fans if they had forgiven him for how things went down back then. In case you’ve forgotten, Farrell returned to Boston because his “dream job” opened up for a second time after he had left. He had been the pitching coach there until the end of the 2010 season, and Terry Francona was relieved of his duties at the end of 2011. When Bobby Valentine lasted just a year, Farrell couldn’t pass on the chance for a second time.
He and the Red Sox eventually got the reunion they wanted, and all the Blue Jays got in return was Mike Aviles, who was later flipped with Yan Gomes for Esmil Rogers (thus, sorta screwing the Blue Jays again). It was a bitter conclusion to his short tenure as the Blue Jays’ skipper, especially considering he was only in Toronto for two years, and it was his first shot as a manager. For many fans like me, leaving for a division rival after being given an opportunity like that, was nothing short of a slap in the face.
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Which is why the Blue Jays can’t entertain bringing John Farrell back into the fold, in any capacity.
Noted baseball writer, Peter Gammons, tweeted out that Farrell could likely pursue a job with Mark Shapiro and the Jays, a boss and organization he was familiar with. This is almost assuredly Gammons just thinking out loud, but it was enough to get me riled up even just reading the mere suggestion. Andrew Stoeten of Blue Jays Nation also wrote about the tweet, and he’s certainly more open minded on this issue than I am.
To me, it comes down to loyalty to a franchise, something that the Blue Jays have been quick to reward in some cases, and oddly dismissive in others. For Farrell, he deserves to be villainized in Toronto as much as anyone if you ask me. That doesn’t mean people have to hold a grudge forever, but it doesn’t mean you have to forgive and forget either. The Blue Jays gave him his first gig as a head honcho, and he rewarded their faith with bolting to a division rival. Some would argue that the Blue Jays allowed it to happen, but it really boils down to, “do you want someone who doesn’t want to be here?”. If you hire him again, what’s to stop him from jumping at the next shot he gets as a skipper?
While he’s well known for being a good baseball mind, even if he’s not so well liked as a manager, and could potentially add value at some level of the organization, I’m still not interested. This isn’t like the Blue Jays bringing back Cito Gaston or John Gibbons here, or hiring Ben Cherington, it’s a totally different thing. You can’t fault a bench of pitching coach for moving on to a new organization at the chance of a promotion, but to make a lateral move to your old team, and a division rival no less?
I say there are other brains to pick and baseball people out there who deserve an opportunity, rather than the Blue Jays entertaining this idea again. The word traitor might be a bit strong, but I’m not allowed to use the words I’d really like to choose. I’ll just simply say, a hard no on John Farrell in Toronto in any capacity, please and thanks.