The Boston Red Sox announced Tuesday night that they have hired Dave Dombrowski as president of baseball operations, and that Ben Cherington, less than two years removed from the 2013 World Series championship, will be stepping down as general manager. It’s a weird and surprising end to the Cherington era in Boston that was full of some amazing highs and very ugly lows. Just a few weeks ago ownership had explained that Cherington was going to be around in Boston for some time, but it seems this hiring just completely pulled the train off the tracks. With the way the Red Sox baseball operations had been handled the past few years, it was easy to see there wasn’t much of a plan in place, and that’s never a good sign. Hopefully this front office shake-up is what this franchise needs in order to stay competitive year in and year out.
Earlier this month, Dombrowski was fired by the Detroit Tigers after the team failed to make much noise in the AL Central. It was tough situation for both sides, after all the success that had been reached over the years. Certain moves that were made during the offseason just ended up not panning out for the Tigers, and with a rather weak farm system it was going to be almost impossible to win a World Series in 2015. For a franchise that is known to have such a huge win-now mentality, it was a tough pill to swallow. Like the Red Sox, the Tigers weren’t happy with the where the team was going, so a move was made to ensure the future would be brighter.
Cherington opted to not stay with the Red Sox following 2015, but is willing to help Dombrowski with the transition. The two seemed like they would work well together, but with where Cherington currently is in his career, it’s understandable why he wants a different opportunity. The GM spot for the Red Sox is now up for grabs, and according to Bob Nightengale former Atlanta Braves GM Frank Wren seems to be the leading candidate for the job. Dombrowski and Wren worked together with the Florida Marlins and Montreal Expos, and the results were strong. Former Los Angeles Angels GM Jerry Dipoto is also another option for the job, after joining the Red Sox to help with offseason moves last week.
Dombrowski seems excited to start his journey with the Red Sox, after being in limbo the past couple of weeks. In a statement released by the Red Sox, he said, “Although I did have other potential options within baseball, there was no option that stood out as clearly as the chance to come to Boston and win with the Red Sox. Boston is a baseball city like no other and its history and traditions are unique in our game. I expressed to John and Tom that Boston would be my absolute top choice and am honored to have the chance to serve Red Sox Nation.”
Moves seem to be on the way for the Red Sox, and they’ll likely include some pretty big names. After an ugly offseason that has resulted in another tough season, something has to be done to restore faith among the fans. The front office has a long way to go if they want to make this team competitive for next year, and the work starts now.