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Red Sox

Terry Francona Taking 2012 Off

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Terry Francona. (File photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

Terry Francona. (File photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

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Boston Red Sox

BOSTON (CBS) – Former Red Sox manager Terry Francona will be taking the 2012 season off.

Francona told 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Red Sox insider Sean McAdam of Comcast Sports New England he will not be managing next season, “for my benefit.”

“I need to take a step back and re-energize. That’s probably in my best interest right now. In fairness to myself, it’s the best thing to do,” Francona told McAdam on Wednesday.

“I’m sure that will be really difficult for me,” he said of taking a year off.

“Not going to spring training will certainly be a huge void, but I guess I’m glad. I want to get myself re-energized and if and when an opportunity arises (to manage again), I’ll be ready.”

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Francona, who stepped away from his Red Sox job after a 7-20 September collapse, had been interviewing in case the right position was available.

But St. Louis hired Mike Matheny for their vacancy, an opportunity Francona said he was excited about, and a reunion with Theo Epstein in Chicago was not in the cards.

“We both know each other well enough where we can can be honest with each other. I don’t think it’s the right opportunity,” said Francona.

While he plans on staying away from the bench, the broadcast booth is another story.

“It may be a way to stay in the game, enjoy it and also be able to step back and look at things,” said Francona, who added he already heard from other networks.

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Francona filled in for Tim McCarver for the first two games of Fox’s ALCS coverage, something he said terrified him, but was also a lot of fun.

“I’m not deluding myself, thinking I’m the next coming of John Madden,” he joked. “But I did enjoy it. We’ll see. Baseball’s what I know. Maybe there’s a place out there that makes sense for me. I’d at least like to look.”

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