After the epic worst-to-first season, after the knee-jerk pronouncement that the magical 2013 Red Sox championship run was greater than the 2004 title that relieved 86 years of frustration, Terry Francona somehow gets the final word on the 2013 baseball season.Shank also gives his readers a first time print disclosure on his conflicts of interest, inadvertently making some of the article about himself:
Francona Tuesday was named American League Manager of the Year for 2013.
It was a shocker in Boston. And it was not a party-starter for the bosses who fired Francona after the 2011 train-wreck finish.
First, know this. Voting for 2013 AL Manager of the Year was conducted before the postseason. The Sox’ 11-5 playoff run and ride down Boylston Street was not a factor in this election. This vote was based strictly on the 2013 regular season.
In the interest of disclosure, this is where I need to remind you that I work for a paper owned by the Red Sox owner, John Henry. And I wrote a book with Terry Francona. It would be impossible to have more conflicts of interest. But the book is long gone, and the Red Sox have emerged from the post-Francona rubble in spectacular fashion. Farrell and the Red Sox won the 2013 World Series. Compared with that, this is nothing.Given that the award goes out, in my observation, to the manager that does the most with the least, this year's outcome is unsurprising, and just.
All that said, the award to Francona is loaded with irony and symbolism. Think of it this way: the Red Sox won three World Series in this century and the only time Francona was named Manager of the Year was the year in which he was not managing the Red Sox. What’s up with that?