As is typical for managers making hiring choices for their staff, John Farrell has a long work history with Gary DiSarcina.
The two were teammates with the California Angels for two seasons and later, DiSarcina was the Pawtucket manager when Farrell was helping to lead the Red Sox to a world championship in 2013.
But, said Farrell Friday, DiSarcina isn't the Red Sox' new bench coach because of any sort of nepotism.
"This isn't about hiring friends,'' said Farrell in a conference call. "This is about hiring the most qualified person....You're always looking for the most qualified person, someone who can impact [the team].’’
DiSarcina, 48, who grew up in Billerica, Mass., replaced Torey Lovullo, who left earlier this month to become manager of the Arizona Diamondbacks.
DiSarcina has toggled between the Red Sox and Angels since the end of his playing career, serving as a coach for the Angels in each of the past three seasons.
Prior to that, he worked for them as both a field coordinator and minor league field coordinator and he was a shortstop for the Angels from 1989-2000.
He's managed three seasons in Lowell for the Red Sox from 2007-2009 before returning to the organization to manage at Pawtucket in 2013.
Farrell said he compiled a list of possible candidates for the post but "kept coming back to [DiSarcina], given the person he is...He's a selfless individual [and] the strongest candidate.''
DiSarcina said it was difficult to leave the Angels and manager Mike Scioscia, but the Red Sox' post intrigued him. And the opportunity to return to his native Massachusetts proved to be "icing on the cake.''
He cited his communication with Farrell and the degree to which he felt included in 2013 as the Triple A manager were powerful pulls.
"I just felt like it was a fit for me,'' said DiSarcina.
While in Pawtucket, DiSarcina managed a handful of players now on the major league roster, including Xander Bogaerts, Christian Vazquez, Jackie Bradley Jr., Brock Holt and Matt Barnes.
He said he’s delighted to have watched their progress from afar and looks forward to re-establishing relationships with them.