Report: Some Red Sox players don't believe Farrell backs them enough

Brandon Wile 1h ago

Evan Habeeb / USA TODAY Sports

Having sputtered through the first 43 games of the season, the Boston Red Sox could be in need of a major shake-up.

Projected to run away with the American League East this spring, the team sits third in the division entering play Tuesday at 22-21 and is coming off a road trip that saw the Red Sox drop three of four games to the Oakland Athletics.

The underwhelming start could eventually result in the firing of manager John Farrell, who’s held the job since the beginning of the 2013 season. While Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports there’s no guarantee that Farrell will be fired in the near future, or at all, trouble is brewing in the clubhouse.

“Some players, but not all, believe that (Farrell) does not stand up for them strongly enough to the media when the team is struggling, sources say,” Rosenthal writes. “Some also question Farrell’s game management, talk that exists in virtually every clubhouse, but some more than others.”

Signs of conflict in the clubhouse became visible when Matt Barnes threw at the head of Manny Machado in April, leading an agitated Dustin Pedroia to separate himself from his team’s actions. More recently, Farrell and Drew Pomeranz were involved in a testy exchange in the dugout during Saturday’s game when the skipper removed the left-hander after four innings and 97 pitches.

“I don’t like coming out of games that early,” Pomeranz said after the game, according to Evan Drellich of CSN New England. “I gotta do a better job of being more efficient … It’s frustrating. As a starting pitcher, you want to be out there as long as you can.”

There’s not exactly a long line of options to manage the club should president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski choose to fire Farrell, as Rosenthal notes. Former Red Sox bench coach Torey Lovullo would have been the logical successor, but he moved on to manage the Arizona Diamondbacks this winter.

Farrell has gone 361-330 during his five seasons in Boston, winning two division titles and the 2013 World Series but posting back-to-back last-place finishes in 2014 and 2015. The club exercised Farrell’s option for the 2018 season in December.

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