02/24/2013 04:56 EST | Updated 04/26/2013 05:12 EDT

Toronto slugger Jose Bautista says he will welcome former manager Farrell back

DUNEDIN, Fla. - Toronto Blue Jays slugger Jose Bautista says former manager John Farrell will get a warm welcome when he brings his Boston Red Sox for a spring training game on Monday.

"Why not?" the star outfielder said Sunday. "As a person I like him. As a manager I like him. He never did anything bad or wrong to me. You can't blame somebody for having a desire to get to a certain place in his career.

"At least he said it and made it obvious and made it known to everybody. And he had a chance to pursue his dream. I would rather him be there doing that than be with us and wanting to be there.

"Yeah, I'll go say hi to him, talk to him, see what he's doing, see how's he feeling. Normal chit-chat. And then I'm going to try to kick his ass."

Farrell asked to be released by Toronto after the 2012 season to manage in Boston, which he called his "dream job."

Eventually the Jays agreed on a compensation deal in October that saw infielder Mike Aviles come to Toronto and right-hander David Carpenter go to the Red Sox.

Farrell spent four seasons as Red Sox pitching coach from 2007 to 2010 before managing two years in Toronto.

The Red Sox visit will also see the return of third base coach Brian Butterfield, who left Toronto to join Farrell in Boston.

Knuckleballer R.A. Dickey will make his spring debut against a Boston split-squad Monday. Another Boston team will play at the Tampa Bay Rays.