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Francona, Sox part ways

BOSTON — Terry Francona is out as Red Sox manager. In a statement released Friday, the team said a change was needed and thanked Francona, who led it to World Series titles in 2007 and 2004, its first since 1918.

"(Francona) said that after eight years here, he was frustrated by his difficulty making an impact with the players, that a different voice was needed and that it was time for him to move on," it read. "After taking time to reflect on his sentiments, we agreed that it was best for the Red Sox not to exercise the option years on his contract."

Francona went 744-552 (.574) during his tenure.

But the Red Sox missed the playoffs for the second straight season despite leading the Rays for the wild card by nine games Sept. 4. They went 6-18 after that, including Wednesday's 4-3 loss to the Orioles in which they were one strike from victory, amid reports of clubhouse problems.

"I didn't feel like the players need to go to dinner together, but they need to be fiercely loyal on the field," Francona said. "I didn't always get that feeling, and it bothered me."

Asked about reports of drinking in the clubhouse during games by starting pitchers not playing, Francona said, "I'd rather talk about generalities."

Francona also said it was his decision to leave.

"I'm not sure how much support there was from ownership. I don't know that I feel real comfortable," he said. "It's got be everybody together. I was questioning that a little bit."

Angels GM out: Tony Reagins resigned as general manager of the Angels after they missed the playoffs for the second straight season. His first two seasons, 2008-09, the Angels lost in the Division Series and ALCS. This year's team had the majors' fourth-highest payroll.

Baylor faints: Arizona hitting coach Don Baylor, 62, was taken to a hospital after fainting at Miller Park. GM Kevin Towers said initial test results were encouraging, but his status for today is unknown.

Manny faces charge: The Broward State Attorney's Office charged Manny Ramirez with a misdemeanor count of domestic violence. He was arrested Sept. 12 after his wife told deputies Ramirez slapped her, which caused her to hit her head on the headboard. Authorities say Ramirez, 39, denied the allegation. An arraignment is Oct. 14.

Braves: Hitting coach Larry Parrish was fired after one season and one day after manager Fredi Gonzalez said his entire staff would return. Atlanta ranked 13th in the NL in hitting (.243) and 10th in runs (641).

White Sox: Sergio Santos, who had 30 saves this year, agreed to a deal that guarantees him $8.25 million over three years. It includes options of $6 million, $8 million and $8.75 million with a $750,000 buyout for each.

Francona, Sox part ways 09/30/11 [Last modified: Friday, September 30, 2011 10:16pm]
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