According to various reports, not only has Dave Dombrowski been hired as the president of baseball operations for the Boston Red Sox, but also that Ben Cherington is no longer with the club.
Stunner: Dave Dombrowski goes to the Boston Red Sox and Ben Cherington is out.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) August 19, 2015
While the Red Sox reportedly had no interest in making a run at Dombrowski when it was announced that he was no longer with the Tigers, that is clearly not the case, as they've given him the reins to their entire organization. Cherington had gotten the vote of confidence from ownership, but that rarely seems to be a good thing.
Just a week ago, Jerry Dipoto was hired to help the Red Sox with offseason moves on an interim basis, which fueled speculation that Cherington was in hot water. However those rumors were put to rest almost as quickly as they surfaced, as it appeared that Cherington had made the decision himself, rather than at the behest of ownership. But with Dombrowski's installation, it now seems that Dipoto was brought aboard to help in transition process that has now taken place.
The Red Sox appear to be moving towards the latest trend in baseball, as Dombrowski will be named as the president of baseball operations, which leaves the position of general manager open to someone else. According to Bob Nightengale, the former GM of the Atlanta Braves is the front runner.
Frank Wren is the leading contender to be GM under Dave Dombrowski with the #RedSox now that Ben Cherington is leaving.— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) August 19, 2015
Since the early 2000's, Boston has been viewed as one the most analytically inclined teams in the sport, and even went as far as hiring Bill James, who's considered the godfather of sabermetrics; which makes Dombrowski's hiring somewhat confusing. When Al Avila took control of the Tigers, he made it clear that he would bring a culture change.
"One thing I will bring is expanded analytics. I will tell you that I feel that we have a ways to go to catch up with the industry. We have been making some strides, but we'll fast-foward a little bit and add to that department. You'll see a big difference there."
Avila didn't go as far as to say that the Tigers ignored advanced analytics under Dombrowski, but he underscored that they haven't been as receptive to them as other teams have been. With Cherington no longer at the helm, it's fair to wonder how the Red Sox will approach the statistical side of the game going forward.
While Dombrowski was certainly less analytically inclined than some of his peers, it's hard to argue against his success, as he turned a perennial last place team, into a legitimate powerhouse and World Series contender. Under his leadership, the Tigers acquired players like Miguel Cabrera, Max Scherzer, and David Price, just to name a few.
The Red Sox have greatly underperformed in 2015, as their rotation has struggled, and new offensive additions, Pablo Sandoval and Hanley Ramirez have been disasters. Dombrowski undoubtedly has the full support of his new bosses, and it will be interesting to see how he begins to rebuild his new organization. The offseason is just a few months away, and Dombrowski is now officially on the clock.