The bench coach in baseball is a very important position. In many different ways, he’s the manager’s right hand man. He’s the liaison between the manager and the players, communicating important information from the manager to them. It’s important that the bench coach and manager have an excellent working relationship, respect one another and are always on the same page.
Valentine and Bogar
It’s no secret that there was major friction between Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine and bench coach Tim Bogar. Bogar, who had been a coach with the Red Sox for years, had a history with Valentine and it was not a good one. In 1997, Valentine cut Bogar from the Mets and that bitterness remained. Neither respected the other.
Farrell and Luvullo
New Red Sox manager John Farrell and new bench coach Terry Luvullo have known one another for almost 20 years. They first met when both were with the Angels. When with Cleveland, hey worked for five years in player development. When Farrell went to the Toronto Blue Jays to manage, Luvullo became one of his coaches.
What Farrell Said
Farrell said in a press conference about Luvullo, “You first connect with a person on the way they live their life, the way they view the game [and] they way they interact with people. That was present in ’93 when we were teammates out in Anaheim with the Angels.”
The connection continued through the years and it goes deep, which is good news for the Red Sox.
“You see how people react to certain challenges,” said Farrell. “Watching Torey handle his own team in the minor leagues over a number of years in Cleveland gave a lot of those examples. I can tell you, they weren’t always the easy ones. Whether they were issues that arose with a given team; whether they were things inside the framework of a team.” The new Boston manager added, “There were some fires that we had to put out along the way.”
Red Sox Have Learned
What is apparent about the manner in which Boston has gone about finding a new manager and a bench coach is that they have learned from last season’s mistakes. That’s extremely positive. I expect the Red Sox front office to continue to make positive moves as they develop the structure for a new and exciting team.