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Terry Francona will fill in for Tim McCarver during ALCS

It's looking like the Boston Red Sox's loss is Fox Sports' gain.

With an October schedule cleared by a September collapse, former Red Sox manager Terry Francona will serve as an analyst for Fox's coverage of the upcoming ALCS and World Series. According to Broadcasting and Cable's Ben Grossman, Tito will be dropped right into the fire, sitting alongside Joe Buck for the first two games of the ALCS.

Why the opportunity to pinch hit? Reps for Fox Sports say that Tim McCarver, Buck's usual sidekick, is reportedly undergoing a minor heart procedure.

Though reports have had Francona ready to jump back in the managing saddle next season, this postseason stint on TV is interesting. Apart from the Red Sox opening that he created, the Chicago White Sox gig is really the only one officially out there right now. If Sox owner Jerry Reinsdorf doesn't want to open his wallet to land Francona or Francona doesn't want to work with Kenny Williams, TV will provide a nice layover spot until the next round of open jobs comes around.

If Francona wanted to get away from the pressure cooker a bit, then heading into the booth or studio should provide that. Well, at least until the Twitterati attacks him for saying something they don't agree with. Or his cameramen start drinking beer.

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