Former Mets and Rangers manager Bobby Valentine has met with at least one Red Sox owner and will meet with the others, according to a major-league source.
Red Sox team president Larry Lucchino denied Thursday that the club was focused solely on hiring an experienced manager, but repeated that the club “probably” would widen its search.
Major-league sources say that Tigers third-base coach Gene Lamont made a strong impression in his interview with the club, and that his previous managing experience with the Pirates and White Sox could be “a separator” in his candidacy.
Valentine, now working as an ESPN analyst, would be a significant departure from the candidates that the Red Sox already of interviewed, most of whom have no major-league managing experience.
The presumed front-runner, Brewers hitting coach Dale Sveum, did not receive an offer from the Red Sox after interviewing with the team’s owners on Wednesday.
Sveum did get an offer from the Cubs, and on Thursday was named the team’s new manager.
“Different people are on different tracks,” Lucchino said when asked about the perception that Sox ownership had overruled new general manager Ben Cherington, who had not scheduled any other second interviews.
“The whole group is not going to proceed in unison. It’s not that linear a process. One of the steps was for Sveum to meet John (Henry) and Tom (Werner). That was an important part of the process.”
Asked about losing Sveum to the Cubs, Lucchino said, “Let a thousand blossoms bloom. The Cubs will do what they want to do, what they feel they have to do. We’re trying to do our process with as much internal consistency as possible. It’s inevitable that (Sveum) would be a major-league manager someday.”
Blue Jays first-base coach Torey Lovullo and Indians bench coach Sandy Alomar Jr. are the other candidates the Red Sox have interviewed. Neither has previous managing experience. The Red Sox no longer are considering Phillies bench coach Pete Mackanin.
Lucchino, when asked about a report that the Sox wanted an experienced manager, said, “I don’t know that that’s accurate.”