John Kruk is replacing Terry Francona on ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball.
Francona left the network to become the Cleveland Indians’ manager and now Kruk will be joining Dan Shulman and Orel Hershiser in the booth on Sunday night.
This will the third consecutive year that ESPN has changed its lineup for Sunday Night Baseball. Bobby Valentine left the show to become the manager of the Boston Red Sox in 2011. He was replaced by Francona who left ESPN in October to manage Cleveland.
Kruk said that he was happy about joining the show but didn’t see it as a stepping stone to a managing position in the MLB.
Kruk joked: “I think that is why they are putting me in the booth … Ain’t no chance of that happening.”
Kruk has been a member of ESPN’s studio team since 2004 but said that he never really wanted to be a game analyst. The three-time All Star said that he used to be uncomfortable when former players came into the locker rooms.
“I was always uncomfortable when former players came into your clubhouse, and I don’t know why I felt that way … I got more carte blanche in ballparks than some of the other guys, I was in the training room, talking to players. Bobby Valentine took me to some parts I wasn’t supposed to be in … You get more information when you’re there than just sitting in the studio.”
Do you think John Kruk is a good replacement for Terry Francona?