Now Commenting On:

{"event":["opening_day" ] }

Francona willing to utilize NL-style managing strategy

Francona willing to utilize NL-style managing strategy play video for Francona willing to utilize NL-style managing strategy

ST. PETERSBURG -- Terry Francona hasn't managed in the National League since his days with the Phillies, but he showed Saturday night that he's not opposed to breaking into an NL-style game.

When Lou Marson had to leave Saturday's game with a cervical (neck) strain, Francona moved Carlos Santana from designated hitter to catcher and spent the rest of the game without a DH. He let starter Trevor Bauer bat once and used a double-switch to avoid sending up a reliever in the late innings. Francona said it wasn't his first time burning the DH spot, and it probably won't be his last.

"I'm sure it's happened. That's not that rare," Francona said. "And with Santana, because of his bat, that could happen more. If we pinch-hit for Lou or you pinch-run for somebody, that could happen again -- just not because of injury, and it would certainly be later in the game.

"You can protect yourselves to the point where that will never happen and not give yourself the best chance to win all year. That doesn't make sense to me."

Adam Berry is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @adamdberry. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

{"event":["opening_day" ] }
{"event":["opening_day" ] }
Boys and Girls Club of America

©2014 MLBAM, LP. All rights reserved.

The following are trademarks or service marks of Major League Baseball entities and may be used only with permission of Major League Baseball Properties, Inc. or the relevant Major League Baseball entity: Major League, Major League Baseball, MLB, the silhouetted batter logo, World Series, National League, American League, Division Series, League Championship Series, All-Star Game, and the names, nicknames, logos, uniform designs, color combinations, and slogans designating the Major League Baseball clubs and entities, and their respective mascots, events and exhibitions. Use of the Website signifies your agreement to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy (updated May 24, 2013).

View MLB.com in English | En Español