A few weeks ago I scoffed at the idea that Bobby Valentine was a serious candidate for the managerial role in Boston. Fast forward to today, and it seems as if he is not only a candidate, but the odds-on favorite to win the position.
The 62-year-old Valentine’s most-recent MLB gig was 10 years ago, when he finished in last place with an overpaid, aging Mets team (my apologies: “overpaid & aging” and “Mets team” is a redundancy). I admit to not being very familiar with Valentine’s managerial tactics. Neither is Dan Shaughnessy, it seems. However, that did not stop Danny Boy from penning an entire column on why Valentine is the right guy for the job. Oh, sure, Dan mentions interesting tidbits, like the fact that Valentine is Ralph Branca’s son-in-law, and the fact that he has a cult following in Japan. Not much was said about Valetine’s actual track record and tendencies as a manager, though.
I think that I should be an astronaut. Why? Well, I may or may not be a direct descendant of the Bourbon Kings of Naples, and I can belch really, rally loudly on command. The above statement makes just about as much sense as much of Shaughnessy’s column promoting Valentine. Here is the most memorable trait of Bobby Valentine: he once wore a Groucho Marx mask while hiding in the dugout after being ejected. It made Sportscenter.
Valentine is a pseudo-celebrity, and Dan’s one salient point is that this might help him in the leadership department. Players might be more prone to respect a guy with star power. While I can agree with that, there’s a whole lot more that should go into this type of analysis, and as of now, I haven’t read much else in the media’s argument for Valentine.