Red Sox Fire McNamara

The Boston Red Sox yesterday fired manager John McNamara and named third-base coach Joe Morgan interim manager.

Morgan said he got the word after arriving at Fenway Park for the first of a four-game series with the Kansas City Royals.

Morgan said he had no advance notice of the decision by general manager Lou Gorman.

"Lou Gorman came up to me and said 'We're going to make a managerial change. You're going to be the new manager,'" Morgan said.

Morgan said he didn't have a chance to talk to McNamara before the veteran manager left Fenway. McNamara's tenure included taking the team to the World Series in 1986, which ended in a heart-wrenching loss in seven games to the New York Mets.


"I never wanted to take over another man's job in midstream, but the chance is here now," Morgan said.

The decision comes as the Red Sox begin the second half of their season tied for fourth place in the American League East with Milwaukee, nine games behind first-place Detroit.

Moragn's debut was put on hold when last night's game was postponed. It will be rescheduled today as part of a doubleheader.

Even though the rain postponed the game, it didn't delay the reaction of Sox fans to McNamara's firing.

"I think it was the right decision. The next manager should not be as easy going," said Chuck Kelly of Dedham. "If they can't get a Dick Williams, then maybe a Dallas Green."

Kelly also threw out the possibility of second baseman Marty Barrett as a player-manager.

"Barrett has got the smarts and the respect of the rookies," Kelly said.

At least one fan expressed the sentiments of reliever Bob Stanley, who felt it was unfair to fire McNamara shortly before the game rather than earlier in the three-day, All-Star break.