It hasn’t been the smoothest of seasons down in Beantown. And it’s about to get a lot less smooth.
According to a report from Yahoo! Sports’ Jeff Passan, Boston Red Sox first baseman Adrian Gonzalez sent a text massage to the team’s owners in which he trashed their team’s manager, Bobby Valentine, ostensibly on behalf of his teammates. Then, when a closed-door meeting was held between the players and Red Sox owners John Henry and Larry Lucchino, the players once again blasted their manager.
The initial text message is said to have resulted from a game in which Valentine left starting pitcher Jon Lester in a blowout and did not remove him from the game until he had already allowed 11 runs to score. That game took place on July 22 and the meeting is said to have occurred on July 27, in a New York hotel.
Not every member of the team is said to have been present for the meeting, so we don’t know which players may still support Valentine.
Some in the media believe that the Red Sox players are attempting to use Valentine as a scapegoat, to take the pressure off the fact that the team is performing poorly and many of its highest-paid players have not lived up to their billing.
Valentine is expected to remain in the manager role for the rest of the Major League Baseball season. After that, Red Sox ownership is expected to re-evaluate his position with the club.
Recently, Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington was asked about the possibility that Valentine would be relieved of his duties. “Bobby is our manager and we’re not considering anyone else,” said Cherington. “He’s as committed to managing the team as he ever has been and we’re committed to him and trying to do everything we can to support him and make this work.”
The Red Sox are currently two games below .500 and 11 games behind the division-leading Yankees. The last time the Red Sox finished a season below .500 was 1997.