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The Blue Jays are downplaying rumours of the Red Sox interest in Toronto manager John Farrell. FILE PHOTO: Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE (Kim Klement/US PRESSWIRE)
The Blue Jays are downplaying rumours of the Red Sox interest in Toronto manager John Farrell. FILE PHOTO: Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE (Kim Klement/US PRESSWIRE)

Jays refute Red Sox-Farrell rumours Add to ...

Toronto Blue Jays president Paul Beeston said Sunday that the Boston Red Sox had not contacted the club for permission to talk to John Farrell about their managerial vacancy.

“John is under contract to us and we think he likes it here,” Beeston said in response to a Boston Globe article that the Red Sox have had internal discussions about pursuing Farrell, whom the story describes as being “the preferred candidate to manage the (Red Sox,)” according to a Major League source.

“They (the Red Sox) haven’t approached us, so I don’t want to comment beyond that because it’s hypothetical.”

Farrell, the former Red Sox pitching coach just completed the first year of a three-year contract to manage the Blue Jays, yet the club has also been guarded in revealing the details of his contract as they are in discussing details about any of their executive contracts. Teams generally do not stand in the way of a front-office executive or coach leaving for a higher position within another organization, but lateral moves are a little fuzzier. Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos has said he wants people who want to be in Toronto and has suggested compensation would not be an issue, but the environment within this division and around baseball has changed because of the courtship of Theo Epstein by the Chicago Cubs and the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim's reported interest in Tampa Bay Rays G.M. Andrew Friedman.

But Anthopoulos said Sunday that: "Our policy as an organization is that we don't deny permission to talk to any employees. Top to bottom, throughout the organization."

Epstein has resigned as Red Sox’s G.M. to accept a position as president of baseball operations with the Chicago Cubs and baseball commissioner Bud Selig has said he might need to arbitrate discussions on compensation.

The Globe story says that Farrell was being groomed to be Francona’s replacement but left the club after the 2010 season believing Francona was about to receive an extension of at least two years. But Francona was fired after the Red Sox imploded and pitching coach Curt Young left to join the Oakland Athletics amid reports of clubhouse beer drinking and a lax attitude on the part of the Red Sox’s pitchers.

Ben Cherington is expected to be introduced as the Red Sox’s new general manager as early as Tuesday.

“John Farrell was always their choice to succeed Terry Francona,’’ the Globe quores a major league source as saying. “It was evident when Farrell worked under Francona that when the time came and Francona wanted to leave, Farrell was in place to take Francona’s job.’’

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