Is Terry Francona the next manager of the Cardinals?
The Associated Press is reporting that former Boston Red Sox Manager Terry Francona has interviewed with the St. Louis Cardinals for their manager opening.
Francona managed the Red Sox for eight seasons and left after they blew a nine-game September lead in the AL wild-card race.
St. Louis is seeking a replacement for Tony La Russa, who retired two days after winning his second World Series in 16 seasons with the Cardinals.
More interviews are planned for Wednesday, believed to be with third base coach Jose Oquendo and Hall of Fame second baseman Ryan Sandberg, who managed the Phillies' Triple-A team last season.
After Francona left the Red Sox, there were reports players drank beer and ate fried chicken in the clubhouse during games rather than root on their teammates.
Boston ended an 86-year championship drought in 2004, Francona's first season, when the Red Sox swept the Cardinals in the World Series. Francona also managed the Red Sox to a sweep of Colorado in the 2007 Series.
Francona is the second-winningest manager in Red Sox history with a 744-552 record and 8-0 mark in the World Series.
Francona and Cardinals general manager John Mozeliak did not respond to requests for comment.
-- Houston Mitchell
Photo: Terry Francona with the Red Sox last season. Credit: Carlos Osorio / Associated Press.