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Bobby Valentine set to return to ESPN as analyst for Baseball Tonight

by on Sep.30, 2009 @ 2:18 am, under NPB

Looks like Bobby Valentine will be returning to ESPN as an analyst.

Bobby Valentine, fresh off his six-year stint as manager of the Chiba Lotte Marines in Japan, is returning to ESPN as an analyst on "Baseball Tonight."

Valentine, who led the New York Mets to the World Series in 2000 and the Marines to the Japan Series title in 2005, will make his first on-air appearances during the League Championships Series and the World Series.

ESPN

The New York Daily News goes into a little more detail on what happens in 2010:

In 2010, his role will expand. He will appear on ESPN's "Baseball Tonight," contribute to ESPNNewYork.com, which is scheduled to launch next year, and be a regular contributor to ESPN-1050. Valentine will also be an analyst on ESPN Radio's coverage of the 2010 Division Series.

NY Daily News

From the sounds of the NY Daily News article, it sounds like Valentine won't be returning to Japan next season.

The NY Daily News article also mentioned this interesting little tidbit:

Clearly, Valentine is still interested in managing. That's why it's likely, as it did in 2003, ESPN put a "protection" clause in his contract. In 2003, as part of the three-year offer negotiated with Valentine, network executives insisted that Valentine pay a monetary penalty if he bolted for a manager's job.

I guess that means he's leaving his options open.  And I guess that means there's still a possibility he could return to Japan next season if the right situation presented itself.

Anyone else have anything else to add?