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Terry Francona won’t attend 100th anniversary of Fenway Park, got into an argument with Larry Lucchino

Apr 11, 2012, 11:51 AM EDT

Terry Francona AP

Next week the Red Sox will celebrate the 100th anniversary of Fenway Park and Terry Francona was invited, but the former manager won’t be in attendance because of how his tenure in Boston ended.

Here’s some of what Francona told Dan Shaughnessy of the Boston Globe:

Somebody went out of their way to make me look pretty bad. It’s a shame. I’m sure they’ll have a great event and I was part of a lot of that stuff there, but I just can’t go back there and start hugging people and stuff without feeling a little bit hypocritical.

Until I’m more comfortable with some answers on what happened at the end of the year, I don’t want to have much to do with the organization and that’s a shame. With all the good things that were accomplished, I just feel pretty strongly about that. It was pretty raw at the end of the year. I think I’ve done a pretty good job of moving on from that. At the same time, I’m never going to forget that.

And there’s a lot more where that came from. When told of Francona’s explanation for declining the invite Red Sox chief executive officer Larry Lucchino said: “I understand how strongly he feels on this matter and I accept that.’’

However, according to Francona earlier this week Lucchino called him and “got a little perturbed at me, telling me I was being unfair to them” and “we ended up getting into an argument.”

There’s nothing wrong with the Red Sox extending the invitation, but it’s pretty easy to see why Francona would decline it and kind of sad that he’s still getting into arguments with the people who fired him and tore him apart in the local media while doing so. Who wants to have anything to do with the other person following an extremely nasty breakup?

  1. Kevin S. - Apr 11, 2012 at 11:55 AM

    Which is why Francona is now in Bristol. I hear that’s a great place to go if you’re looking for a rebound.

    • brokea$$lovesmesomeme - Apr 11, 2012 at 5:09 PM

      Bristol is like rebound sex. He has every right in the world to be upset, there are more people out there saying luchino is a jackass than those who say he is a great guy to work for. He ran Tito out of town and theo right behind him. He believes he is the reason for the success because he hired them.

      • jptsr - Apr 12, 2012 at 1:01 PM

        Luchino is an asshole. I would rather the Sox lose for another 86 years than to keep him in the front office. Tito was the best Manager the Sox in decades. I’ve been a sox fan all my life and grew up in boston. I’m sick and tired of these jerks who own the team screw up everything whith their mouths and think everything revolves around them.

  2. uyf1950 - Apr 11, 2012 at 11:58 AM

    The Red Sox organization continues to show it’s class. Where’s the sarcasm button when you want it.

    • yankeesfanlen - Apr 11, 2012 at 12:21 PM

      I feel another Yogi here

      • uyf1950 - Apr 11, 2012 at 1:10 PM

        Good point. Except Yogi was and is a Yankees icon and classic.

      • natstowngreg - Apr 11, 2012 at 6:58 PM

        That was my first reaction — how George Steinbrenner alienated Yogi to the point that he wouldn’t show up for old-timers’ day.

  3. xpensivewinos - Apr 11, 2012 at 12:11 PM

    Sox are going to be brutal this year. Francona will definitely have the last laugh……..and much lower stomach acid.

    • Old Gator - Apr 11, 2012 at 4:41 PM

      Of course the Beanbags are going to be brutal this year. Look at what an ugly first baseman they have playing third base.

    • Wilson James - Apr 11, 2012 at 10:50 PM

      It’s a lot easier to take losses when you can’t stand the skipper and hate upper management.

  4. bowltr - Apr 11, 2012 at 12:35 PM

    I’ll start by saying that I’m in my 40′s and have been a Sox fan as long as I can remember. There have been many embarrassing moments over the years but this one just seems to bother me more than any of them. It’s very easy as a fan of any team to overlook bad personnel decisions or even bad teams, that what fans do. But what they have done to this man (Franacona) is absolutely disgraceful. He helps lead them to their first 2 WS titles in 86 years and they thank him by not only trashing him on the way out but calling him an a drug addict who lost control of the team his last month of employment. They don’t stop there though. They tell the world he’s separated from his wife and living in a hotel, they tell anyone who will listen their staff of aces (hit sarcasm button now) is eating chicken and drinking beer not only in the clubhouse but in the dugout during games.
    Francona went out of his way for 8yrs to protect the Red Sox “brand”. He NEVER threw anyone under the bus, not even that scumbag Manny when he assaulted a 70 something traveling secretary. The guy was/is a loyal as they come.
    Now cut to this invitation. Anyone with half a brain knows Francona is not going to come to this but he should have been invited regardless. Well let’s give the Snake Oil Salesman (Lucchino) credit he does invite him but when Francona have the nerve to turn down the “great” Red Sox invite he get’s yelled at by this scumbag Lucchino. It just turns my stomach to read this. My boyhood team, the team I cried for when they finally won the WS in 04 have turned out to be petty, childish and so unprofessional that I hope they finish in last place. Can’t believe I can say that but I actually hope they lose more than they win. Nothing against the players (well except Beckett and Lackey) it’s the ownership group. They do not deserve the faithfulness these New Englanders have shown to this team. What they deserve is a public flogging for the despicable way they handle themselves and their former employees.

    I certainly hope other Sox fans feel the same way I do. I also hope this somehow makes it’s way to Henry, Lucchino and Werner.

    Go Yanks!!

    • 18thstreet - Apr 11, 2012 at 1:58 PM

      I agree with all of this except the last paragraph. Disgraceful.

      • djpostl - Apr 11, 2012 at 5:49 PM

        As a Yankees fan I can even side with ya on that one lol.

    • homelanddefense - Apr 11, 2012 at 2:01 PM

      that was very well said. I agree with everything except for the part about them losing. As a Sox fan I cant root for that.

    • offseasonblues - Apr 11, 2012 at 6:40 PM

      I was all set to give you another thumbs up until the last sentence. I can’t go that far. But my team is going to pay a price for what they did to a man who should have been able to bask in fan appreciation at the Fenway centennial celebration.

      Aaron, if you have anyway to tell Tito that Red Sox fans truly appreciate everything he did and the way he did it, please, please get that message to him.

      • 1historian - Apr 12, 2012 at 7:03 AM

        People keep talking as if it’s all management’s fault this happened – it’s the FANS who raise the stink that gets the owners’ attention. IMO one big reason Francona won’t be there is that he KNOWS that some of the FANS will exhibit their usual no-class bs and embarrass the whole rest of the fans, the team and the city.

        And probably not even know it.

  5. aceshigh11 - Apr 11, 2012 at 12:41 PM

    I don’t blame Francona for not attending one bit, but this some seriously fcked up shite.

    To not have the best manager in team history there, who led the team out of the wilderness after 86 years…really sad.

    Henry and Lucchino have outlived their usefulness.

    • ras1tafari - Apr 11, 2012 at 2:44 PM

      Lucchino is the source of all these problems. He needs to go.

  6. ahmiller21 - Apr 11, 2012 at 12:51 PM

    Ok, as a Sox fan myself I am very disappointed with what they did to Tito. That being said, bowltr, how can you call yourself a Sox fan of 40 years, hope for them to fail, then route for The Evil Empire??? Epic, epic fail!!!

    • bowltr - Apr 11, 2012 at 12:59 PM

      Very easily, my humanity and personal convictions mean more than any professional sports teams does. My question to you ahmiller is how can you not hope for them to fail?
      The question you ask says more about you and what you’re about than me rooting against the Sox.

      • thetruth1313 - Apr 11, 2012 at 1:33 PM

        Just my 2 cents…

        Every sports team has their ups and downs. The Sox with Francona, The White Sox with the Black Sox Scandal, the Saints with Bountygate, The Pats with Spygate, etc. In my opinion- thats part of being a fan. Its about sticking with your team through thick and thin and not giving up on them.

        But it does come down to personal opinion, what your beliefs are and personal convictions …BUT… you did say Go Yanks?!?!?!? That was wrong :)

      • thetruth1313 - Apr 11, 2012 at 3:06 PM

        In hindsight, I am suprised the media didnt call the whole Francona thing…WAIT FOR IT……..TitoGate.

  7. mybrunoblog - Apr 11, 2012 at 12:53 PM

    Red Sox ownership and upper management should be ashamed. By all accounts Francona is a class act. He led the R Sox out of 86 years of torment and then went a step further by leading them to another title 3 years later.
    How could they screw this relationship up? Just awful…..

  8. thetruth1313 - Apr 11, 2012 at 12:57 PM

    As a Sox fan for a better part of 25 years- since my grandfather got me hooked on all things Red Sox, it is a disgrace the way they treated Francona. And I do agree with some things that bowltr expressed (but I will never say Go Yankees- thats just Blasphemy!)

    Its very unfortunate that Tito did so much for this organization. Guiding the Sox into 2 championships and thats the way he gets treated? I dont blame him for not attending. He will always be the best Sox manager in my book!

    • johnktrainer - Apr 11, 2012 at 1:12 PM

      I have to echo what many of you are saying. After 45 years a fan of the Red Sox, what happened to Francona will only bring on another curse (just kidding about the curse), but with all due respect, Valentine is in for a surprise if he thinks the players are going to lock step for him. They are too used to Francona’s management style, which is pretty laid back. I would never cheer for the fn Yankees but the Cubs are looking like they need someone to cheer them on. I personally would love to see Theo make the magic happen with them this year.

      • sample71549 - Apr 11, 2012 at 1:30 PM

        Your giving Theo too much credit. I’ve never been a Theo fan (think he’s over rated). Let’s see how he does with the Cubs.

      • 18thstreet - Apr 11, 2012 at 2:01 PM

        There were a lot of things that went right for the team. The players deserve most of the credit. But to say that Theo got too much credit — who brought in Ortiz, Mueller, and Millar for peanuts, traded for Schilling, and found Foulke as a free agent? Much less the balls it took to trade Nomar.

        That’s overrated? Sign me up.

  9. brewcrewfan54 - Apr 11, 2012 at 1:14 PM

    Francona should show up just long enough to piss on Lichino’s car door.

    • sample71549 - Apr 11, 2012 at 1:28 PM

      His car door? How about on him?

      • brewcrewfan54 - Apr 11, 2012 at 2:03 PM

        That would be assault. I’m more into a little vandalism.

  10. buffalomafia - Apr 11, 2012 at 1:27 PM

    Francona is next Yankees manager!

    • henryd3rd - Apr 11, 2012 at 3:08 PM

      As a Yankee fan I can understand why Red Sox Nation is up in arms; but leave the Yankees out of that mess. 27 and counting

      • Wilson James - Apr 11, 2012 at 10:57 PM

        Why is it that yankee fans always have to bring their average IQ into the conversation

  11. mplsjoe - Apr 11, 2012 at 1:57 PM

    Remember that meme about how it was Tito’s idea to not be the Sox manager anymore? About how he was burned out? Yeah, I think this pretty much kills that. They fired him and he’s understandably pissed about it.

  12. rgoltsch - Apr 11, 2012 at 2:00 PM

    As a lifelong Yankee fan, I have to say that Francona was one of the true gentlemen in baseball. He was treated extremely poorly by the Sox. They were lucky to have such a classy man at the helm for so mnay years.

  13. spindervish - Apr 11, 2012 at 2:17 PM

    There is a part of me that wouldn’t have minded seeing the Sox start like 0-25 or something absurd like that, but that’s mostly because I have to believe a disaster like that would’ve resulted in Valentine’s firing. But ownership getting a degree of comeuppance certainly would’ve been a nice bonus.

    It’s actually sort of amazing the animus that I’ve developed toward this year’s squad.

    Also, I’d just like to point out how much I’ve come to like Francona. Not necessarily as a field manager or even an analyst, but just as a person. I think he’s handled everything that’s happened since September with a great deal of tact, and he just seems like a very affable, grounded cat now that he’s on TV all the time, even if I don’t always find his commentary particularly trenchant.

  14. 1historian - Apr 11, 2012 at 2:30 PM

    I used to live in Boston in the early 70s when they were nothin’. More than once I went to see them at Fenway, paying $2 for a seat in the bleachers. And more often than not some dudes would show up whose names I never got but someone would always have some righteous weed and we would sit there and get wasted. Fun times.

    Now it’s a seriously no-class organization there. I laughed the whole month of September last year. I’m not a Yankees fan but

    1) It is the most successful organization in pro sports history – 26 titles and counting.
    2) Their home uniforms – the pin stripes – are the classiest in pro sports. Simple and classy.
    3) I went to Yankee Stadium in the early 1950s – what a palace. The Yankees (Yogi Berra, Joe Page, Eddie Lopat, Mickey Mantle, Allie Reynolds, et. al) were playuing the Indianas – Larry Doby. And the Yankees’ announcer was the voice of God. He recently died and to this day when Derek Jeter is playing at Yankee Stadium he has them replay the guys’s announcing his name.
    4) How can you call it a rivalry when at last count it’s 26-2?

    Brooks Robinson was the greatest 3b of all time.

    • 1historian - Apr 11, 2012 at 2:32 PM

      Sorry about the spelling errors – the Yankees were playing the Indians.

    • henryd3rd - Apr 11, 2012 at 3:11 PM

      27 and counting Dude!

    • somekat - Apr 11, 2012 at 3:18 PM

      Yanks didn’t start pinstripes. They stole the idea from the cubs, who stole the idea from the Phillies (the original pinstripers)

      Robinson was no Schmidt

    • bowltr - Apr 11, 2012 at 4:21 PM

      I’ll actually show my Sox here despite what I said in my earlier posts.
      WS titles is actually 27-7 not 27-2 but don’t let the facts get in the way of your argument 1historian.
      I know winning 7 is not close to 27 but only 3 teams have won more than the Sox and that’s counting the Oakland/Philadelphia A’s as 1 team.
      Lot’s of teams would like to have the Sox success.

    • 2004redsoxwcm - Apr 11, 2012 at 10:14 PM

      Well MR GREAT HISTORIAN ( SIC) how about getting that facts straight goes to show HOW MUCH YOU REALLY DON’T KNOW RED SOX HAVE WON 7 WS TITLES YANKEES HAVE 27 NOT 26 AND YES MAY ONLY BE 7 BUT ONLY 3 TEAMS HAVE MORE I BEAT THE CUBS WOULD LOVE TO HAVE THOSE 7 AMONG 25 OR 6 OTHER TEAMS ALSO

      In yankee stadium in the 50′s then in Fenway in the 70′s 20 years aprt goes to show as you get older you surely do not get smarter Maybe before you comment on 2 of the BEST TEAMS EVER IN BASEBALL YOU SHOULD ATLEAST KNOW HOW MANY WORLD SERIES EACH TEAM HAS

      100% I believe you are a Yankees fan For one their uniforms are ugly as all hell pin stripes looks liek they are jail uniforms

      and for your comments about the sox in the 70′s yup they were nothing shows your intelligence again 75 probably the best world series ever played 78 one game playoff they were near the top of the American league east almost yearly Yankees were near the bottom most of the 70′s sir I usually don’t call out people but you are a total idiot who is just talking out his azz

      Just admit you hate the RED SOX…. That’s fine because The REDSOX fan base does not need a know nothing about baseball idiot like you…… I was at Fenway almost every game from 75 through 79 in the bleachers and it was one fun time

      I’m a life long sox fan what they did to Terry Francona is sickening

    • Wilson James - Apr 11, 2012 at 11:04 PM

      26-2? Rather curious math. You must be 1crazyhistorian. Maybe you should stop smoking the righteous weed or remember to exhale.

  15. randygnyc - Apr 11, 2012 at 3:08 PM

    1historian, better change you’re name. Yankees won #27 in ’09.

    • jwbiii - Apr 12, 2012 at 1:13 AM

      Maybe he was counting the rings.

  16. stairwayto7 - Apr 11, 2012 at 3:28 PM

    More drama than a 13 year girl!

  17. feck12a - Apr 11, 2012 at 4:26 PM

    Red Sox ownership is clueless
    yours truly, Fred Wilpon

  18. bigdell - Apr 11, 2012 at 5:17 PM

    Thank you 1historian. You are a classy individual.

    As a lifelong Yankee fan (and hater of all things Red Sox) I have nothing but praise for Terry F. Terrific manager. More importantly, he seems to be a man with principles.

    Good luck, Terry.

  19. djpostl - Apr 11, 2012 at 5:57 PM

    As a Yankees fan I have a ton of respect for what Tito did in Boston. Same thing for Theo. Both guys made their share of mistakes but in the end we all do that. All you can do is measure the sum of what they achieved and not be blown away.

    Yet that pathetic ownership group, and especially Larry Lucchino, have treated both with less class than they deserved. Toss in the former players they threw under the bus at various times and they showed their true colors.

    I find it crazy that so many storied members of Red Sox past want nothing to do with them for long periods after leaving because of they way they are treated when they move on.

    So sad that, for now at least, Tito is among that group.

  20. ahmiller21 - Apr 11, 2012 at 6:27 PM

    It’s not right, but it’s business bowltr. You can’t mix philosophy, humanity, etc with sports, because at the end of the day, it’s business, and unfortunately humanity and business just don’t go hand in hand lol. I’m not trying to be combative at all, I feel your pain, but there is not much that any of my sports teams could do that would make me route for them to lose, you know what I mean? F- the Yankees…..Sox forever!

    • bowltr - Apr 12, 2012 at 7:15 AM

      Business really, you’re going to throw that angle out there? How is it business for me? It’s business for the Sox but I have zero financial stake in the team only emotional. Also for you to say you can’t mix philosophy and humanity into sports then as I said before that says so much more about you then it does about me.
      For example since you’re a laundry guy, would you root for the Sox if the fielded a team of child rapist? I guess that would be ok if they all hit 360, they would just have a strange sex fetish huh?
      Yes I know that is extreme but to make my point there is a line we all have to draw when it comes to anything in life. Apparently my line is closer to humanity and yours is closer to business. Still don’t know what business has to do with this. Was it good business for these scumbags to possibly ruin a man’s career just because the had a terrible September?

  21. ejannetta - Apr 11, 2012 at 7:32 PM

    Terry! Good for you. The Red Sox organization treated you like shit and who cares about entering that eye sore they call a ballpark….nothing but a dump….even the rats moved out.

    • Wilson James - Apr 11, 2012 at 11:06 PM

      The rats only move out when the yankees come to town.

  22. fdugrad - Apr 11, 2012 at 9:28 PM

    Maybe all the other mgrs. who won all those other WS trophies that the Sox accumulated over those many years will attend. Terry only won two WS victories. What about the other 25 or 26 series wins? What? You mean I have the wrong east coast team? Oh… Seriously, this tells us ALL we need to know about the execs in the the organization. Not a very classy way to treat a field boss with two skins on the wall. It would appear as though Terry is better off shed of the Sox.

  23. 13yrsmlbvet - Apr 11, 2012 at 9:50 PM

    Lucchino is a piece of shit and the worst part is he has hired everyone who has ever done him a favor, kissed his ass or took a bullet for him somewhere along the line to work for the Sox. He has started to kill that organization and he will succeed like he did running the Padres and Orioles off a cliff. Neither team has been the same since. Jump ship Sox fans. This is just the beginning of this classless mutherfucker’s self promoting narcissistic act.

  24. 1historian - Apr 12, 2012 at 7:09 AM

    27-2. I stand corrected. 27-7? I was talking about the record since the sox sold Ruth to New York.

    Does the phrase ‘curse of the Bambino’ mean anything?

    • bowltr - Apr 12, 2012 at 7:18 AM

      No. If you believe in curses then you’re a moron. It has do do with Ruth, Gehrig, Berra, DiMaggio, Mantle, Ford etc.
      Talent wins fool, not a magic spell. The Yanks have had it far more often then every other team. It’s why the Celtics won so many titles and the Canadians too.

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