ESPN baseball insider Buster Olney made his weekly appearance on Mut & Merloni on Wednesday to talk about Red Sox and other MLB news.
Olney noted that at least some of the executives involved in the Red Sox' managerial search took some family time over the holiday weekend, and now they're returning their focus to trying to land John Farrell from the Blue Jays.
"I think when they got back after the holiday on Tuesday, I think a lot of the people involved went back to work," Olney said. "I would not at all be surprised if we hear something in the next 24-48 hours. Because let's face it: It's a pretty clear situation. If Toronto really values John Farrell, if they don't want to lose him and he's someone that they want to try to build around going forward, they're going to say no. If they have even lukewarm feelings about him, then they should aggressively move to make something happen. Because they know he's probably going to walk away at the end of next year anyway."
Added Olney: "There's been a lot of speculation about John's relationship with the Blue Jays, how the Blue Jays feel about him. It all depends on whether or not [owner] Paul Beeston will allow a Blue Jay employee to go to a division rival, and whether or not he sees as important John Farrell as part of the Blue Jays' future. If he's OK with John leaving, I think it's one of those things that can get done very quickly. If he hems and he haws and he fights and he claws and tries to convince John, I think the Red Sox will be prepared to move on. I do know that they have been in the process of preparing other candidates as well."
Olney said he does not expect that the Red Sox will spend a lot of time trying to negotiate with the Jays if Toronto takes a hard-line stance.
"I think if you're the Red Sox you just move on," Olney said. "Because I think there's motivation on the Blue Jays' side. If they don't want John Farrell, if they don't really view him as part of the future, wouldn't you want to just get this over with and get your new manager in there, whether it's Torey Lovullo or Sandy Alomar Jr. or somebody else? Because I think through this whole process, it's become fairly apparent that John Farrell is probably not going to be their manager past 2013 no matter what happens. You might as well get something in return. And I can't imagine that the Blue Jays and the Red Sox can't find some middle ground if the Blue Jays say, 'OK, we're ready to talk.' Now, I say that, and we're all going to look back on the Theo Epstein negotiation, which only lasted what seemed like about 45 years."
Former major league catcher and current Padres executive Brad Ausmus, a Connecticut native who attended Dartmouth College, is a name that has surfaced as a potential candidate if Farrell doesn't work out.
"He is sort of a new model of managers -- the understated Robin Ventura, Mike Matheny. That's Brad," Olney said. "Brad's one of those personalties where you could have a fight on the field, total chaos, teammates throwing punches at each other in the dugout, and Brad will be the guy whose voice tone never changes, never rises. His heartbeat probably stays at 65. He's always been really good dealing with the media. He never overreacts. And he certainly knows pitching. To me, that's one of the big questions about any manager, is dealing with the pitching staff, running a bullpen. He's going to have a leg up on those things. I think he's an excellent candidate.
"The question for the Red Sox I'm sure is: Do you want to have a first-time manager breaking in in Boston. I think the fact that Brad's a native New Englander, he knows the intensity, the velocity of the passion of baseball fans up there, is a huge thing. If they hired him, it wouldn't surprise me -- if John Farrell doesn't take the job -- because I think he would be an excellent candidate."
Bobby Valentine has been quiet since his dismissal as Red Sox manager. Olney said it's clear that there was an agreement that both sides would avoid criticizing each other publicly.
"Yes, and I talked to some officials who say that that's standard operating procedure with the Red Sox and standard operating procedure with other teams," Olney said.
Terry Francona was named manager of the Indians, a move that caught Olney by surprise.
Said Olney: "People around baseball are absolutely stunned that he took this job because of the issues with the rotation, the questions as to the viability of baseball in Cleveland going forward and their short-term prospects, and they think that there probably would have been better jobs out there in other places. But here's the thing: Terry I think really wants to work with people that he knows and gets along with."
We had an impromptu visit from Peter King from SI / MMQB to our Fenway Studios and decided to talk some NFL and Patriots with him.
Pete talks with The Senator, Phil Perry about the Patriots trading for Dwayne Allen, ruling out a return to New England for Martellus Bennett. They also talk about the potential future of Patriots backup QB Jimmy Garoppolo and some of the big names in NFL free agency
Pete, Thornton and Price give their final thoughts and predictions for the Super Bowl.
Dale, Holley and Rich Keefe discuss NBA lottery pick Lonzo Ball with his very outspoken father Lavar Ball. The guys touch on the Celtics, his feud with his sons' high school coach, Lonzo being better than Steph Curry and much more.
Kirk, Gerry, and Alex Reimer discuss whether or not Isaiah Thomas will win a title in Boston.
Gerry, Kirk, and Trenni react to the Celtics loss against the Suns.
We sit down with the manager of the Sox, John Farrell, for our weekly interview.
Rob Bradford is joined by Minnesota Twins relief pitcher Craig Breslow, who is one of the foremost authorities among professional athletes when it comes to understanding how charities work. Not only does Breslow head up his own charity, the Strike 3 Foundation, but also proactively has taken the Boston Globe to task via a letter to the editor after a 2013 article criticizing the allocation of funds for high-profile athlete's charities. Breslow digs into the recent controversy surrounding Tom Brady's affiliation with Best Buddies, explaining why the recent Globe article was misguided.
Joe Castiglione and Tim Neverett talked to the Sox left fielder, who had five hits in the Sox win in Baltimore.
Hour 4. Bradford joins the show to defend the fact that he attends Ortiz’s charity event for free. Alex doesn’t think it was unethical to out Hernandez.
Hour 3. Kirk goes on his second rant of the day. Minihane orders Alex’s and Gerry’s mics to be turned off and hosts the show by himself.
Hour 2. The guys talk discuss Hernandez’s gay lover with Reimer. Reimer says there aren’t a lot of straight guys looking to experiment. Bradford tells Mut he paid for his wife to attend the Ortiz charity event.
HOUR 3 - ESPN layoffs continue. One time Fauria didn't know Sage Steele's name so he called her "Rashard." ESPN has pretty much decided to punt on hockey. Marcus Smart responds to Jimmy Butler. Glenn dreams of the Celtics adding Gordon Hayward in the offseason.
HOUR 4 - The guys kept us updated on the wave of ESPN firings. Paul was blocked by Pete Abe. Fauria still hates Dan Dakich. Will Gerald Green be a factor, again, tonight? The lawyer for Kyle Kennedy (Aaron Hernandez' rumored gay lover) Larry Army gave a press conference.
Some house cleaning is being done at ESPN as reports of employee cuts begin to come out. And how pissed/not pissed should Matt Barnes be?
We sit down with the manager of the Sox, John Farrell, for our weekly interview.
The article didn't actually reveal anything that wasn't already public record, but the Globe "expose" on Brady and his relationship with the Best Buddies charity certainly has everybody around here talking about it.
We spend some time talking Sox as news of the rain cancellation comes down. A few more thoughts on the spat in Baltimore and Dustin Pedroia, plus David Price takes to twitter for his "media session".
Kirk Minihane, Springsteen super fan, is joined by Garry W. Tallent, founding member of the E Street Band. Kirk and Garry talk about what it's like on tour with Bruce, how the band goes about selecting songs for the tour, Garry's projects away from the band, and Garry's upcoming solo tour that will bring him to the New England area.
Kirk Minihane, future radio hall of famer, sits down with current radio hall of famer Howie Carr. Kirk and Howie talk about Howie's latest book Kennedy Babylon. If you like famous people engaging in sex scandals, hard drug taking, and murder this is the podcast for you. Its a fascinating look at Boston's most famous family and the problems that took the family down.
Kirk Minihane, host and overlord of the morning show, brings Gerry Callahan and producers Chris and Ken into the studio to hear his show proposal. Kirk is thinking about making some changes to the morning show and wants to hear his crew's opinion.
Ken Laird and Chris Curtis are in after a Reimer Wednesday edition of K&C to recap a virtuoso Kirk Minihane off-the-rails performance
Buck and Reimer debate over whether it’s appropriate to speculate about Aaron Hernandez’s sexuality. Buck says his sources don’t corroborate what Michele McPhee and the Daily Mail have reported about the disgraced ex-NFL star’s love life. Reimer disagrees with the Boston Globe's assertion that there's a homophobic element to the Hernandez story.
Buck and Reimer share their coming out stories and discuss the different ways they decided to reveal their sexualities. Buck waited until more than 30 years into his career, whereas Reimer announced he was gay during his second appearance on WEEI. On that note, Buck presses Reimer on whether he's exploiting his sexuality to further his career.
Hour 3. Kirk goes on his second rant of the day. Minihane orders Alex’s and Gerry’s mics to be turned off and hosts the show by himself.More from this show
Hour 4. Crazy Al calls in for the second day in a row. A terrible caller tries to make a point. The Arkansas inmates had interesting last meals. Tomase’s epic acceptance speech.More from this show
Hour 1. In a wild opening segment, Kirk and Gerry lash out at the Globe and Joe Sullivan. Reimer weighs in on Cyd Ziegler’s Hernandez take. Michael Holley thinks the Globe would do the same story on Ortiz as they did on Brady and Best Buddies.More from this show
Rob Bradford is joined by Minnesota Twins relief pitcher Craig Breslow, who is one of the foremost authorities among professional athletes when it comes to understanding how charities work. Not only does Breslow head up his own charity, the Strike 3 Foundation, but also proactively has taken the Boston Globe to task via a letter to the editor after a 2013 article criticizing the allocation of funds for high-profile athlete's charities. Breslow digs into the recent controversy surrounding Tom Brady's affiliation with Best Buddies, explaining why the recent Globe article was misguided.More from this show
Hour 2. The guys talk discuss Hernandez’s gay lover with Reimer. Reimer says there aren’t a lot of straight guys looking to experiment. Bradford tells Mut he paid for his wife to attend the Ortiz charity event.More from this show