One of the biggest questions going into next season for the Red Sox will be whether or not manager Bobby Valentine will be back. He is under contract for 2013 as he signed a two-year deal but with all that has happened this season, will he come back?
Here are three reasons why Valentine could return as manager in 2013:
He's still with the team now, what will change?
Red Sox ownership has had plenty of opportunities to fire Valentine throughout this season, but haven't done so. This could mean they are planning to bring him back next year.Going 9-20 during the month of August and then losing 11 of 12 in a span from late August to early September, he could have been fired then. Making a comment that the Red Sox September roster is the worst in major league history, he could have been fired then. His rants on the radio, which included threatening to punch a host in the face (albeit jokingly), could have led to an immediate firing.
Through all of this Red Sox ownership has stood by their manager and even gave him a vote of confidence early in August, so what would make the off-season any different?
Rebuilding process will take another year
After "The Trade" in late August which sent Adrian Gonzalez, Carl Crawford, Josh Beckett, Nick Punto, and their combined approximately $270 million contracts to the Dodgers the Red Sox established the fact that they are now in a rebuilding phase.
While the rebuilding could begin to take place in the offseason, it may take a year or two to be exactly where ownership would like it. With Valentine's contract good for 2013 the team could keep him around and then bring in a new manager for 2014 when they feel the team is 100 percent ready to contend again.
At the top of the Red Sox' list this past offseason was Blue Jays manager John Farrell and he is signed through 2013. So it's possible the Red Sox could get their man, just two years later than they first wanted.
Larry Lucchino's influence
By many accounts, Larry Lucchino was the one who really wanted Valentine to be manager this year and overruled others in the organization. It has also been understood that Lucchino is the one running the Red Sox.
Lucchino is very stubborn, and sometimes does not like to admit that he was wrong about something. He has said that injuries have been the cause for all of the struggles this season and has not taken accountability for anything. Lucchino could stick with his man in Valentine just to try and prove a point that he was right in hiring him in the first place.