Francona interviews in Boston
BOSTON -- Terry Francona has changed since he managed the Philadelphia Phillies to four losing seasons.
"I was very young. I was learning kind of on the run," he said after interviewing for the job as Boston Red Sox manager. "I had a goal back then to be a major league manager. Now I have a goal to be a successful major league manager. I think it can be done."
Francona spoke with Red Sox general manager Theo Epstein and his assistant, Josh Byrnes, for about six hours on Wednesday, two days after former Boston shortstop Glenn Hoffman spent the day with team management at Fenway Park.
The Red Sox also have received permission to talk to Anaheim Angels pitching coach Bud Black, but he told the Los Angeles Times he expected to turn down the chance for an interview. Epstein said through a team spokesman only that no other interviews have been set up.
Francona, 44, managed Philadelphia to a 285-363 record from 1997 to 2000, never winning more than 77 games. That was a young team that considered improvement a success.
If he gets the job in Boston, Francona knows, he will be expected to win right away. The Red Sox let Grady Little go after he averaged 94 wins in two seasons because his managerial philosophy didn't match Epstein's reliance on preparation and statistics.
"The one thing you just die for is a chance to win," Francona said. "To have a chance to win and to be expected to win is what you play for, what you coach for."
Francona spent the 2001 season as special assistant to baseball operations for the Cleveland Indians and was bench coach for the Texas Rangers in 2002. He was a bench coach for Oakland this season when the A's blew a 2-0 lead in the first round of the playoffs, losing three straight to the Red Sox.
"I had a great view" of the Boston team, Francona said. "They seemed to really care for each other on the field. They give you no let-up in the lineup."
Francona, son of former major league outfielder Tito Francona, was an outfielder and first baseman in the majors for 10 seasons with Montreal, the Chicago Cubs, Cincinnati, Cleveland and Milwaukee. He hit .274 with 16 homers in 708 games.
Hoffman is the only other person the team has interviewed for the job that opened when Little was let go following the heartbreaking loss to the New York Yankees in the AL championship series.
But unlike Hoffman, who said he was still sounding out the team as it checked him out, Francona enthusiastically campaigned for the job.
"I was excited to come up here, and now I'm still excited," he said. "Just to be considered for an interview is a real honor. They're going to have a lot of terrific candidates for this job."
This story is from ESPN.com's automated news wire. Wire index
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