"It's a shame," Francona told the Boston Globe. "I'm sure they'll have a great event and I was part of a lot of that stuff there, but I just can't go back there and start hugging people and stuff without feeling a little bit hypocritical."
Francona was dismissed following an epic September collapse in which the Red Sox blew a wild-card lead that stood at nine games on Sept. 3. Following the season, stories surfaced that some Red Sox players were drinking beer during games and that Francona had lost control. Unnamed team officials, according to a previous report in the Globe, said Francona was hindered by a troubled marriage and pain-medication use.
"He has an exalted place in our history and we were hoping it would be convenient and comfortable for him to come back," team president Larry Lucchino said.
Francona will be at Fenway on April 22 as part of his duties as an ESPN analyst. But he declined to be around 2 days before.
"I just don't feel comfortable coming back because of what happened," Francona said, "and that's a shame because I do feel awfully strong ties to so many people there."
Because of injuries, the Capitals are likely to start Braden Holtby in net tonight for the series opener at Boston. He has played in 21 games in his NHL career.
Bruins goalie Tim Thomas was in net for 25 games in last year's postseason alone. What are the chances the Caps win anyway?