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Terry Francona joins ESPN

Posted by Peter Abraham, Globe Staff  December 5, 2011 10:24 PM

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This release from ESPN:

Terry Francona, two-time World Champion manager of the Boston Red Sox, has joined ESPN in a multiplatform role which will include serving as an analyst for Sunday Night Baseball, the network’s exclusive national game of the week. Francona will join Dan Shulman and Orel Hershiser in the Sunday Night Baseball booth, replacing current Red Sox manager and former ESPN analyst Bobby Valentine. He will make his ESPN debut tonight, Dec. 5, on SportsCenter and Baseball Tonight from the Winter Meetings in Dallas.

Francona will also provide analysis for Baseball Tonight, among other news and information shows, and ESPN’s coverage of the Little League World Series.

“Terry is a brilliant baseball mind, with two World Series rings over the last eight seasons, and we’re thrilled to welcome him to our team,” said Norby Williamson, executive vice president, production. “Ted Williams for Joe DiMaggio never happened, but this is ESPN’s version with Bobby moving to the Red Sox dugout and Terry replacing him on Sunday Night Baseball.”

“I’m excited to join ESPN and to be able to talk about my passion for baseball with fans who love the game as much as me,” said Francona. “In some ways, I’ll be a rookie all over again, but I’m looking forward to the challenge.”

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Francona was a .274 /.300 /.351 hitter and Valentine hit .260 /.315 /.326. So the trade is pretty much a wash.

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