The 61-year-old Valentine, who is an ESPN analyst, has emerged as a possible front-runner for the Red Sox job after Boston elected not to offer a job to Dale Sveum, who on Friday became manager of the Chicago Cubs. Sveum was the only candidate on general manager Ben Cherington's publicly announced list of bidders for the job to interview twice, but Cherington has since acknowledged there is at least one other candidate, who has been identified as Valentine, and perhaps more.
Valentine had a conversation with Red Sox CEO Larry Lucchino in 2003, before Terry Francona was hired. During that process, Valentine also had come highly recommended to Red Sox majority owner John W. Henry by longtime Los Angeles Dodgers manager Tommy Lasorda.
While in Japan, Valentine also worked with the Red Sox after they established a working agreement with Chiba Lotte in 2007.
The Red Sox had initially hoped to hire a new manager before Thanksgiving, but before leaving for the Dominican Republic, Cherington acknowledged that might not happen. Cherington went to the Dominican to scout Cuban phenom Yeonis Cespedes and make changes in the team's international department.
The Red Sox's search for a new manager, begun while Theo Epstein was still general manager, started after Sept. 30, when the team announced that it was not exercising the two-year contract option it held on Francona.
Information from ESPNBoston.com's Gordon Edes contributed to this report.