FIRST, the baseball boss was fired. Then came some members of the coaching staff.

Guess someone had to take the fall for not repeating as champions, right?

So, as the sport’s final four get their League Championship Series going, the Red Sox go about the business of putting this thing back together again — and rumors fly.

Dodgers leader Andrew Friedman to run the organization? Curt Schilling — yes, Curt Schilling — as the pitching coach? How about Pedro Martinez leaving TV to get back into uniform?

The real fun starts after the World Series, when J.D. Martinez can opt out. The new GM’s first task might be trading Mookie Betts — you know there is no way the two talented players can join Chris Sale and David Price and give the Sox four $30 million players. Three? Perhaps, but then you think of the team’s goal of getting down below the $208 million tax threshold.

The Astros, Yankees, Nationals and Cardinals continue to whittle the championship race down to one — and the Red Sox continue to have meetings on how the organization is going to look in a matter of just the few next weeks.

Column pal Chris Smith of MassLive.com penned a lengthy and informative piece on the money situation this week — a brilliant and detailed account of the finances, which get bolstered by Oakland having to give back its revenue sharing cash. If you find the piece — and you should — and you figure it all out there might be a spot for you at Harvard Business School, but you should find it, anyway if only to give you an appreciation of what’s going on over on Jersey Street.

From RedSoxStats on Twitter: “My Betts guess: The contract they offered him last winter will eventually leak, it’ll be huge, the Sox will again offer him a monster contract between now and Thanksgiving, Betts will reject it, the Sox will say they are now exploring all options and will eventually trade him.”

He wants in

Just when we thought Schilling was going to run for Congress, word surfaced he wants back in on wearing a uniform, either as a pitching coach in Boston or Philadelphia or even as a manager. And while you don’t have to agree with his political stances, and I don’t, the man knows pitching. He also should eventually be in the Hall of Fame.

The Red Sox aren’t the only ones with decisions to make in the coming weeks. As this was being typed, there were eight managerial openings — and this after Dave Roberts survived after the Dodgers again failed to win their first title since 1988.

Eight out of 30 teams — that’s 27 percent of the teams looking for a skipper.

Looking around

Antonio Brown wants to play. As he files his grievances against the Raiders and Patriots, he took to social media to say,“(If) you guys follow the Patriots, tell them to call me. They still gotta pay me, so might as well let me earn it.” …

Howie Kendrick was having a Bill Buckner-like postseason experience — three errors, bonehead baserunning — when he came through as the old pro he is with the Division Series-winning grand slam for the Nats, and then a key RBI single in Game 1 of the NLCS. …

TD Garden squeezed their fans by adding an extra seat to each row and also adding rows to sections and vows to listen to what will be mounting complaints. From NBCSports Boston’s Joe Haggerty: “After a growing number of complaints about the leg room for the new seats at TD Garden and a tepid initial response to it, the TD Garden president has a message for Garden ticket holders: ‘We will make this right.’” We shall see. …

TackoMania is running wild through Celtics fans and it becomes tougher and tougher to let giant center Tacko Fall go. Can he help in small doses? Do you keep him and sacrifice a player you like? Remember, barring a trade there’s only one roster spot open. …

By winning Game 5 of their series with the Rays, the Astros ended a six-game losing streak for home teams in Game 5’s of an ALDS. In fact, road teams are still 20-12 in such games. …

Darrelle Revis, the best at what he did when he did it, says he has passed his crown. “Stephon Gilmore is by far the greatest corner in the game right now,” Revis tweeted this week. …

The NBA salary cap will be reduced because of the battle with China over human rights and its effect on loss of league revenue. The President is ripping coaches Steve Kerr and Gregg Popovich for their silence as they continue to rip him at every opportunity. …

No Fun League? The NFL fined Green Bay’s Aaron Jones $10,527 for waving at Dallas’ Byron Jones as he romped into the end zone last Sunday. …

Jayson Tatum did NOT take the expected step forward last season after working with Kobe Bryant during the offseason, work that included the young player taking more mid-range jumpers in the NBA world of threes. “I’m still going to shoot the midrange,” he told the Boston Globe. “I’ve seen all the people talking about the de-Kobeing. Kobe didn’t teach me anything bad. Everything we talked about and he showed me was great. Last year, with the jump I didn’t make that everybody expected, it was not his fault. He’s one of the greatest ever, so everything he taught me was — I’m very grateful, and it helped me. I’ve got to take responsibility for how I played last year not being as big of a jump that people thought. But I’m still going to shoot midrange.” …

Our pal Jack Edwards made a stunning point on the Bruins after the Avalanche made it 2-2 with 7:08 left in Thursday night’s game. With the camera showing the visitors bench, Edwards said, “No panic on the Boston bench.” Jack, what in that picture would have constituted panic? …

Sox prospects Marcus Wilson, C.J. Chatham and Jarren Duran all made the Arizona Fall League’s All-Star game. …

The Patriots don’t play another 1 p.m. game until Dec. 15. Next up is a visit to the Jets a week from Monday. That’s eight straight games of 4:25 at the earliest. …

The line making the MLB rounds was some variation of Joe Kelly killing the Dodgers in two straight Octobers. …

Patrick Marleau, now ex of Toronto, returned to the Sharks this week and scored two goals in his first game back.

Headline in the NY Daily News this week billed Thursday’s QB matchup in Foxborough as Daniel vs Goliath. Daniel (Jones), leading a slingshot offense, had a tough game. So did Goliath. Goliath won — and scored two touchdowns. …

The Atlanta Braves have lost 10 straight postseason series. After they were eliminated by the Cardinals thanks to a 10-run first inning the other day, a Bay Area television station ran a headline over video that read: “Braves Scalped.” Great. …

If you’re thinking Cincy’s A.J. Green as an answer to the Patriots’ receiver question, think again. Bengals coach Zac Taylor says Green isn’t going anywhere. Stay tuned for an upcoming trade? …

John Farrell was a finalist for the Phillies job that went to Gabe Kapler in Philly two years ago. Is he back in that picture? Old friend Bill Madden said in the NY Daily News that Farrell impressed Angels owner Arte Moreno in a recent interview. We all assumed they fired Brad Ausmus because Joe Maddon was on the market, but who knows? …

Fox Sports 1’s Colin Cowherd on what makes Tom Brady special: “Here’s the great thing about LeBron James and Tom Brady, and for this moment, let’s stick with Brady: The ‘who’ has never mattered. He’s got touchdowns to 75 different people. It’s never about the ‘who.’ It’s about the ‘where.’ When the ball is snapped, where will you be as a receiver three seconds after the snap? It’s about ‘what.’ What is your job? Do your job. Tom Brady’s the only quarterback in NFL history that the ‘who’ doesn’t matter.” …

From Hall of Famer Jayson Stark after the Nationals advanced: “Let’s bring back that tweet everyone loved so much after the Wild Card Game. The last time a baseball team from Washington won a postseason series, it was 95 years ago. When Walter Johnson won Game 7 of the 1924 World Series!” …

Zdeno Chara passed Wayne Gretzky and moved into 23rd place on the NHL’s games played list this week. …

The 76ers’ Al Horford spoke to the Boston Herald’s Steve Bulpett on leaving Boston and said, “I just think that if Kyrie would have stayed, I don’t know if it would have worked... It was just clear that the group that we had just wasn’t going to be able to coexist.” He added, “I understand the meaning of this rivalry and obviously of me leaving and the disappointment. I respect it. I understand if people are not happy... Here’s my thing that I’ll say to you: I won’t hold it against anybody if they feel negatively toward me for leaving.” …

Brady and former backups Jimmy Garoppolo (4-0) and Jacoby Brissett (3-2) are a combined 13-2 heading into Sunday’s play. …

Think you had a tough week? Dodger A.J. Pollock went 0-for-13 in the NLDS with 11 strikeouts. …

The Boston Globe’s Chad Finn often comes up with the funny line. This week: “I love the statement from “Gronk” from Fox: ‘Their deep talent roster is unmatched, which was important for me as I embark on this new chapter in my life.’ There’s no way he said embark.” …

Washington skipper Dave Martinez, whose team started 19-31 this season, on his guys being ready for the Cardinals (prior to Anibal Sanchez‘s near no-hitter Friday): “We’ve been playing playoff games since May 24.” …

Brady on the release of old friend Ben Watson: “Pretty tough, pretty tough. Ben’s a great player, been a great player for us, for other teams. I know he was looking forward to play. For as great a player as he was, he was 10 times that as a person.... Can’t say enough good things about him.” …

Can you imagine getting stuck is afternoon traffic getting to Game 5 in Atlanta, then arriving at your seat to find you team down 10 runs in the first inning? From StatsbyStats: “The Cardinals scored 10 runs in the first inning, the most runs in a first inning in MLB playoff history. It also ties the most runs in ANY postseason inning all-time (1929 A’s, 1968 Tigers, 2002 Angels).” …

Veteran James Neal scored seven goals in 63 games for Calgary last year. Heading into Saturday’s game at Madison Square Garden, he already had seven in four games with Edmonton. …

Passing league? This from Dallas Morning News stalwart Rick Gosselin (47 years on the beat) after last weekend: “There were nine 300-yard passers in the NFL last week. Their teams went 4-5. There were eight 100-yard rushers. Their teams went 7-1.” …

From Bob Costas on the Astros-Rays series: “From Minute Maid Park to Tropicana Field – the ball isn’t the only thing that’s juiced.” …

Old pal Kendrick Perkins has landed at ESPN. “I’m thankful to personally announce that I’ll be officially joining the espn family,” he tweeted. “I’ll be on each of their NBA platforms all year long! Thanks again to the entire Espn family for welcoming with open arms! Blessed!!!!” …

MLB commish Rob Manfred is putting the gentle squeeze on the city of Oakland with the threat the A’s will follow the Raiders to Las Vegas. …

Old pal Ryan Spooner is playing hockey in Lugano, Switzerland, after making his way through the NHL. …

The Twins’ 16-game postseason losing streak is tied for the longest among the four major sports: They have equaled the NHL Blackhawks (1975-79). The Pistons (2008-present) have lost 14 straight and the Lions (1991-now) have dropped nine in a row. …

Finally, we always hear about the bad stuff regarding NFL players, right? This from ESPN’s Adam Schefter: “Texans QB Deshaun Watson officially launched the Deshaun Watson Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the support of education, health, housing and other charitable causes to support families and youth in underserved communities.”

Mike Shalin covers Boston pro sports for the New Hampshire Union Leader and Sunday News. His email address is shalinmike@yahoo.com. Follow him on Twitter @mscotshay.