On December 4, 2003 — The Red Sox announce the signing of Terry Francona to a three-year deal, with an option for a fourth, to be the team’s manager. The 44-year-old former Phillies’ skipper replaces Grady Little. Little became the scourge of Red Sox Nation after failing to remove Pedro Martinez in Game 7 of the ALCS.
Francona will manage the team from 2004 – 2011. In 2004 when they won their first championship in 86 years, and had to overcome being down 0-3 to the New York Yankees to win the ALCS. He will manage the team to a second title in 2007 and averaged 93 wins a year during his 8 years in Boston. During his 8 years he had to the tightrope managing personalities like Pedro Martinez and Manny Ramirez, working with Theo Epstein and his statistics-driven executives, balancing their data with the emotions of a 25-man roster, and meeting the expectations of three owners with often wildly differing opinions.
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