Let me start by saying that I am a fan of John Farrell. I think he is a good manager and I like him leading my Red Sox. That being said, he is on the hot seat and really in a tough position. The Red Sox are the favorites to win the American League this year. The expectations are very high and this Red Sox team does have some glaring issues. I spoke about some of them last week in this post.
There is a very good chance this Red Sox team does not get off to a great start. David Ortiz needs to hit for the Sox to win and he often struggles early in the season. David Price, who I think will have a very good season, might struggle at first to adjust to being an ace in Boston with a big salary and huge expectations. I won't even get into the issues of Hanley Ramirez, Pablo Sandoval and Rusney Castillo.
I am convinced that the only reason Dave Dombrowski did not fire John Farrell in the off-season was because of Farrell's cancer diagnosis. How can you fire guy battling for his life? All signs point to Farrell being healthy now, thankfully, but it makes his seat very hot.
Torey Lovullo will be a manager in MLB this time next year, mark it down. The Red Sox front office knows this as well. Lovullo is very good and those around baseball know it. The one way the Sox can make sure he doesn't get away is by making him their manager. That can only happen if the Sox are playing below expectations early in the season. The high expectations so many have placed on the Sox this season will only help Dombrowski justify his move to fire Farrell.
Remember 1988? Those Red Sox also had high expectations and at 43-42 those expectations were not being met. John McNamara was fired with a winning record and 9 games out of first place. Joe Morgan stepped in and the Sox took off going 46-31 to win the AL East. Morgan Magic saved the season.
I predicted the 2016 Sox would win 88 games and battle for a wildcard spot until the last day of the season. I think they get that last playoff spot with a late season run only it won't be Farrell leading the charge. Torey Trickery saves the season? It could happen.