Rob Bradford of WEEI.com is reporting that both DeMarlo Hale and Tony Pena will be interviewed by the Red Sox for their vacant manager position. Both of these coaches have a history with the Red Sox, and in different ways. In addition, each of Hale and Pena are currently working for other American League East clubs -- Hale, with the recently eliminated Baltimore Orioles, and Pena as bench coach for the New York Yankees.
Hale worked with the Red Sox starting back in 1993, as the manager of the High-A Fort Lauderdale Red Sox in the FSL. He also managed High-A Sarasota, Michigan in the Midwest League, and Double-A Trenton. He was coached the U.S. Futures squad during the 1999 All-Star Game at Fenway, the same year he took manager of the year honors for his work in the minors.
Hale left the Red Sox and headed to Texas, but returned to Boston before 2006, as the club's third base coach. Hale had previously worked alongside Terry Francona in Texas, and before the 2010 season, became Boston's bench coach. He left the club after 2011, though, becoming Baltimore's new third base coach, a position he still holds. Coincidentally enough, Hale lost out on the Toronto Blue Jays manager gig to current manager and person of interest to the Red Sox, John Farrell.
Pena never coached with the Red Sox, but was their catcher from 1990 through 1993. Pena began managing in the minors back in 1999, overseeing the New Orleans Zephyrs of the PCL. He was a big-league manager shortly after with the Royals, and was in charge when Kansas City snapped their consecutive losing season streak in 2003, with an 83-79 record. They lost 104 games the next year, though, and when the club lost 25 of their first 33 games in 2005, Pena resigned. Pena has worked with the Yankees since, first as their first base coach, and as bench coach since 2009.
It's tough to separate, given how little he managed in the majors, how much of the Royals' struggles had to do with Pena, and how much was just the club being talent-less. Maybe Pena wasn't the greatest manager in his time there, but it's hard to criticize a guy for failing with the kind of roster the Royals had back in 2004. That particular Royals club featured Darrell May, Brian Anderson, Jimmy Gobble, and Mike Wood as four-fifths of the rotation. Jeremy Affeldt started eight games, back when it was still thought that maybe that was a good idea. Zack Greinke was the lone starter with an above-average ERA+, and he was just 20 years old and threw 145 innings. One -- yes, singular -- hitter featured an above-average OPS+, and that was Mike Sweeney, at that point 30 years old and in the middle of a four-year run where he averaged just 116 games per season.
Essentially, the jury is still out on Pena, who has had success elsewhere, because the Royals were so terrible that it's hard to glean anything from the season other than that fact. How very Royals of them.