OMF - Tom Werner talks with OMF about Adam Jones, Yawkey Way, the NESN broadcasts and relationship with the Yankees, 9-21-17

Ordway, Merloni & Fauria
Thursday, September 21st

Red Sox Chairman Tom Werner joined Ordway, Merloni and Fauria in-studio to talk about a variety of topics surrounding the ball club this season. Werner gave his thoughts on the Adam Jones situation from earlier this season. He talked about the David Price-Dennis Eckersley controversy, saying he would have handled the situation differently. He talked about his frosty relationship with the Yankees, saying that “people in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones.” Werner also gives insight on the call by John Henry to change the name of Yawkey Way.

00:33:55

Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.

These peaceful and they can't afford we will pony up for and where guests always get their say unimpeded and without interruption and what consultants also they had they were now this summer or they were eliminated they have young players think about go to let me talk among your guess you're not on Sports Radio telling you we. Always a half. Couple times during the course of the season he would chairman of the Red Sox on board graces us with his presence in the studio in studio courtesy and good. You or oil revenues and activists. A lot going on caught on honor yeah good to the Bruins practiced for details about the Celtics right here almost done lose and are you right of instability spring training facility appear on television or does it every mr. beautiful mark its editorial here for us of these real lazy you know and has risen so you've got I mean this team is as you look at right now hits to the post season looks like you're going to win the division. It's a team it's a little bit different than what I think we thought at the beginning of the season that we think they would hit a few more home runs even without David Ortiz. But you bullpen looks really good show how do you got a little. And it's been exceptional. Lately is starting that I we haven't given opera and I think in 26 innings Fella. It better it's been a very very. Great year for the pitching obviously weakness David Ortiz but it. He also scored a lot of runs and in our last twelve games and wired Internet and half of them as a lot a lot of runs lately but. I'm I'm. I'm always a little superstitious I'm not counting that we won the division it in the Yankees I think at some point. Schedule and we do now the last ten games. And you know we finish tied with the Yankees got to go play one game playoff Yankee Stadium that's bigger and analysts that and then play it. So. You know who the Yankees have been playing great baseball lately so we've match them put them. You know if you guys now it's an inscrutable game so. In look great one day and the next they can get you know. I'm curious as David Price is now looks like he's just out of the bullpen and then goes out of discussion here after he throws. A simulated game and he and John and sit down and talk. How far does that go up. They do you do catch wind that you are you part of a discussion you were John Henry part of discussion is because now 31 million dollars there's an investment long term maybe archers this year. This is just stop at Dave Dombrowski John Farrell. Well old we we talked frequently we've we've Dave and John but that's a baseball decision. I I think he can only be an asset as we all saw you pitched. Really well and he pitched a couple days ago and to have and available in the bullpen can only be an asset. I think it effort if I'm right I think he pitched. He pitched the save in the seventh game against him against the Red Sox in 2000. And seven or eight regulars at 88 where they had they'd be this in seven games and then. And they went went they went on so he can only be an asset that coming out of the bullpen of course you know we wished it today he pitched more innings this year that. There's been a lot of great surprises nobody would have thought that there. And comments would approach is as great if he has Noah. All in all fine you know I remember. Talking in the preview on opening day in our first goal is. Get to post season we've done that that's that's not you know we're we're we. Are going to celebrate that here we are we're in first place. I think that the Yankees are have really strengthen themselves in the second half I think they're going to be formidable. Team in post season so we'll see where it goes but we're we're playing postseason fates. Yeah you mentioned that you know. You know pom rants and other pitchers have kind of you know or so like living down dude expertise is based on last year. Does that make it easier for you to deal with maybe the lack of success that prices had him in the first two years knowing that other people other guys that you didn't expect of Kana. Kerry carried the load since he has a male apply. Well courses than anything I mean that other people stepped up and we had great expectations for Chris Sale I remember. When we signed them and and nobody would have thought that every instance 300 strikeout last night which I think. Is the highest for any Red Sox pitcher since that Pedro so I mean he's he's exceeded even our high expectations for him that our bullpen then. Outstanding in all these games that. We go into extra innings and we seemed two win I think we won our last seven extra inning games as you just feel like whether it's camber older. Her Kelly year or Barnes there are any of these people coming out of bullpen they're gonna show at the other team down. Our get a bunch of stuff that happened off the field during the course of the season that was well discussed on this program and many other programs. So let's go back to the Alan Jones case Adam Jones claiming that there was a fan. Who uttered the or screened the N word Adam. You believed to the entire organization believed on the national narrative out there was. That not only did somebody scream the N word at Adam Jones but there were hundreds of Red Sox fans who were sitting in center field to apparently. Wouldn't come out and say that this actually happened almost like they're contributing. To the image that Boston has had. Over the years aren't you guys are doing stuff about it now you don't PSAs and everything else. Can you believe that you were fans out there in center field Tom maybe 5600 over moron in the vicinity. You believe that the eight didn't say anything to anybody. Well we've certainly spent a lot of time talking Eamon this. All I can say and you know I with and and party today is carrying these guys talk or somebody was talking about. It Sam Kennedy you know he looked down Jones and and and he believed Annan Jones. I bowl I believe Adam Jones down. It's whether whether you know you believe and are not. This is this is that. A challenge in our society this is an and Boston problem this is a national problem but it's been perceived as the Boston brought you know well that I'm. She's just frankly I another shouldn't and I think that's not appropriate that's not fair. You know I've been. Other cities and and you know there's there's there's a rotten apple everywhere avenue plot a rotten apples in Charlottesville. So this is that this is a challenge you know I like to go to the ballpark in I had. An African American friend who said you know what we take that sign down. In net over the green monster and I should look first of all as a fan I really don't want messy. Political signs of either of any stripe opening of the ballpark I'm going in my family I'm I'm enjoying myself there other places to protest its knotted at Fenway Park. In addition it was in the field of play the umpires are right to take the sign down. So I thought the whole thing with an appropriate. That being said you know. As as as a a person who's running an organization that believes in inclusion and believes in in everybody feeling welcome. If they. Heard horror and people who were who were saying. Racial epithets then there's no place for that so I mean I don't know what else they can say I think that we we've covered a lot we are. Focused on on welcoming everybody to Fenway Park and there's no place for racial epithet. I don't think anybody's gonna debate I think the problem is. How we are perceived. If we're not getting down to factual details of what happened now. I go to Fenway Park and have for years and I've said this on here are remembers a little kid going when I was aged him and the fans in the other word for when the inward out and Earl Wilson. I hurt doesn't care so much that you're denying that we don't have a real checkered past may be a real bad last year. But on the other hand people viewing those core pack in 1972. Wintertime and an emblem on 12 but I think not getting to the bottom of this. And letting people in the country view the people we're sitting around this individual who apparently set this word. And just hit and when I get into the details of it doesn't help Boston in some cases it really hurts so will we you do. I would try to find out somebody in the stands. For anyone of those I'd point out how much the same as a potential like it and if somebody is thrown at F bomb out there. And we see kids other adults what do they do they stand up they go to the ushers in you your issues are great at it get that person out talking to that person or that. Person is bull rush by all these other people around. That's what I find hard to bleed. If Adam Jones said the heat. Got that were thrown at him as he's walking on boils history I would believe them hook line and sinker the fact that we have no witnesses and five or 600 people of the city around it. Didn't say it and that's the net. That can be out or out there laughing about the fact that 50600. Bostonians. Sat there and let the thing once and so on board an opposing player. I think that's bad. Currently make a fair point I mean there's no question and I talked to players and they tell me what it was like to play in other other ballparks and you know mechanic you know mentioned ballparks but you know Lou this is not a Boston problem I accuses the national tiger I think it is amino anything's denying that it didn't app displays of Kemal incidents happened in the past people talk remote. That's specific instance you know like I'm. I'll just out of it and expect that a week later even a few days later there was much talk that he got that somebody would comport you know it's a yes or next this guy he was an absolute use this he what he was doing was wrong. But you guys are doing this PSA. Correct at videos. And we talked about it and obviously you know listen it's a good thing you know it's not a bad thing below. What is the big as far as we're trying to accomplish this are saying if you are someone out there who was he racist sitting in your ball park and Dustin Pedroia comes ounces racism is bad. The purses up all home saying you know what I like medium alone gonna be a racist you know means a whole week targeting. Those just trying to make awareness. I just think it's about awareness for trying to inspire others to do what they planned to sort of as you say speak out and Foster. Tolerance. You know the next night. Someone did did say something that was inappropriate right at the National Anthem and the person next to him called nurture and so. So I understand if you if you if you're aware of something you know talk to the usher and and I understand your point that. You know all all I'm moving on from here on thing okay we're we're gonna take the lead in in talking about this talking about inclusion fostering. And let's move on Everett you don't see Boston be any worse than any other city though as far as those won that one rotten apple that is. Everywhere now absolutely not I think if they're there they're rotten apples I don't know who everywhere and and you're right tick when many people have to have. Have poignant towards Boston as depicted on Boston and I and I don't think that's fair or appropriate but you know. I've heard I've heard. Players talk about this kind of thing happening in all in all stadium itself. You'll pretty rough yeah I am not really well Philadelphia's end up with and I love. I'm much that you're denying the Boston hasn't been done in the past let's talk about the past you guys wanna change the name of yawkey way night. As I still gripped this down Lou grew up in this town we know. Some of the past the of Tom jockey and some of that is quite disturbing he seemed to care more about birds in South Carolina. That he did about people who didn't look like camp. Yet I got this letter this week from John Harris you've probably seen the swift and a similar idea sending it out to the friends of the hockey foundation. He is taking the various points that have been brought up that I learned growing up in this town that. When Jackie Robinson came to tryout for the Red Sox that Tom jockey who's out there. Uttering that inward Adam I'd get that and off the field of whatever. He's coming out with. What he claims is some factual evidence that it never happened that Tom yawkey was not there that day interestingly enough he were he uses the Boston Globe's. Reporting that day which is owned by of course John Henry now. So he's obviously throwing that out. Also reported that home. Yawkey was not in Boston at that time. How much research have you done back in this is this. Is this hearsay or do you have factual evidence now that you're looking back and saying we want we want to bury the past is the past was ugly. And there were reached racist tones in the past ownership of the Red Sox and we don't want Tom yawkey name. Uttered anywhere near Morse code get it off the left field wall gave yucky way. What's your feeling on OK well first of all I'm I'm not for expunged and Tom York es name. I was at the hall of fame in naturalize for the last induction and tomahawk he's an all fame and and if we're not there's a plaque for Tom yawkey. In from the ballpark and not for taking that town that being said. And there's no denying that the Red Sox have had a troubling. Racial past and there's no doubt there's no question that the Red Sox were the last team in a grade. There are number of people I've I've talked to in this community and a number of of employees of color. Who think that when they come to Fenway Park. And they walk into our front door and there's something upsetting to them and you know one or off the air IMAP you know I've talked to a number of our employees. And they think it should send me to come to Fenway Park and see that symbol. And I can debate and no I have no interest in debating with the who is that mr. Harrington who I have a lot of respect for about. You know whether it's certain incidents happened to you you can't quarrel with the fact that there are a number of things that. It happened that that that there were like what. We we. And I don't get is there there's some legal issues I wanna get into that but it's clear we were the last team in a great it's it's it's. What was it now illegally shut. In other or some other things ago we're going on then that I think you you you were aware of that. That we can debate off there it doesn't matter to me what matters to me is that right now. This too too many people and in that in the black community here and to many of our employees. It it is that it has had troubling symbol to them and if we can change the street name to me that's that's that's a positive thing it's not. What we're not trying to it I'm not in favor of letting them you know the more the Morse code is an interest thing. It's an interesting factoid I'm not I'm not for resisted taking Tom's name down in trying to expunge them but if if if John Henry said something that he was haunted by by our past. I think this is a positive thing that word of Basil I know the report was it evenly guys took over this team was bought them. Right there all week guys were aware of that capacity John Henry. He was quoted saying these cities haunted him in the past and the day he bought this team's a lot you understand why a lot of people might look at in same or given. What happened the end Jones instant everything that's going on right now this could be you viewed as. Pandering because of the timing if he had such an issue with it and why didn't you do it back in 0302 when he took over. It's if it's you know I I've heard that criticism but I can only tell you that we've been discussing this internally. Her a long time and some. It's it's not just a coincidence obviously we are aware of these racial incidents that happen this year but. It's something that bit. You know could could we have discussed this and decided this in 20102011. Sure but there's no wrong no reason not to discuss in 2017. So the public service announcements about it was at a player polish or was added management bush. Actually that I don't know if that if that started with Sam Kennedy bit we are joining forces with the the other team isn't in Boston and then there and the governor. And anything we can do to talk about. Inclusion and again. To me guys you know I'd much rather be talking about the plan on the field but that you know. We are a India public trust in in many ways and and we have to be responsive to our fans and and I was particularly. Affected when I talked to a couple more employees who feel that walk into Fenway Park was. Who isn't that an obstacle and I would like to feel you know we're all everybody in baseball wants to see is as much inclusion as possible as many. Fans of color coming to our ballparks is possible this has been as we all know a bit of a challenge and in Boston so. If if we can no Wellcome people. You know whatever their gender whatever their color to Fenway Park it's only thing. Our time we had a Time Warner's with this by the way the chairman of the Red Sox we had an incident Yankee Stadium Todd Frazier. And just to see him keel over after a foul ball hits a little girly toddler. Right square in the face apparently. A fairly serious. Injury. We are getting the word today well should we put netting up all the way out to the foul poles and left field right field now. We've had this conversation with you in the past few guys. Did expand it out of the dugout. Would we go from here because it's pretty obvious. And unlike the whole nation you and I were were laughing about this before we went and fairway if you look at pictures and nobody has ever it's. Razor where where everybody would like we weren't there in Canada that was a while after right. But people were looking straight at the ball game if you seal pictures of replay in the crowd is looked at the looking at the pitchers. Does that anymore people are there on there that the Smart devices to do different things they're talking. They're not paying attention. So does Major League Baseball have to do now is huge in. The crap. Wolf first a role. This has been summing it we we have started to address where it ends up is is as much a league issue as it is the Red Sox issue. I think it. We as you said when we expanded the netting. Further than what the league guidelines recommended. They now go dugout to dugout. I don't wanna get too far ahead in the saying what will do that. It's it's a very upsetting situation left we we we take fan safety that then is probably the most. Paramount to. Concern of ours and this is a horrible situation and that this through Euro this effort. On my guess is that. Will have conversations with the league and and there will continue to address the matter but I think 2016. Was the first time that. The league actually. Mandated a certain set of guidelines and will will look to probably expand on them. And you didn't see much pushed back from fans desire revolves that no seats spontaneity in relief. You don't notice a thing it's like president PG version that was a big concern wasn't season tickets yeah I think rows back or roulette baseball Experian know company's net from a bigger season ticket holders have pushed. Back I don't think we've heard. And the real criticism and you know why we were at this lastly meeting in the end the AM. League showed us that certain kind of netting pitchers that strong that perhaps is a little more transparent. So they're making a progress actually in the in the physical Manning. So. That you know I I I. We need to address this problem and as Sam Kennedy spoke to one of our players yesterday who. It's very. Upset about this. Experience you could see Todd Frazier with her owner upset about it and so will address it. Okay occasional segment gesture Greg we want to get into some TV stuff with him and his comment Wharton chairman of the Red Sox joining us live here in studio on all enough. FaceBook Twitter and future grab more of or wade were loading and Fauria. Sports Radio WEB. Tom Warner joining us live in the studio is so much we wanna get to when. Thanks for hanging around a little bit longer so what's your tenacity and let's get to to TV and obviously you've had the unfortunate. Situation with the health of of Jerry Remy. And that's been an issue we get this question an awful. What do you guys want to hear. From announcers Arctic are on the year and specially in the the in the case of that in this case analysts because I know the players sometimes. And I've done that sure before I understand players don't always understand that we can bring up the Dennis Becker's Lee case. For some reason I think their players in that clubhouse that think that he is really critical of them. I think he's frank. I think he's honest. I had a conversation one time when John Henry told me his favorite personality on us and was that a sector so he thought he was great body so what are you guys wanna hear there's I think there's a specially with some of the Phil and people who have been doing it here. I think there's a perception out there among the fan base that you want yes men you want homers you want people it is gonna say all great things about the Red Sox. Well that's not true of them who I think the criticism that. The players adamant tennis with that he was not a homer that's my understanding that IE and I I shared Johns. Accolades about tennis I think he's one of the best collar guys and in the business I think Dave O'Brien is terrific play by play guy. And Jerry Remy is you know he's he's he's also on the pretzel go in the broadcasting hall of fame. If it is and listen I love it when Lou lose on the air I don't think Lukens you don't consider yourself a homer yeah. 'cause I don't think so yeah okay let's put it up and tell I don't like he did play the game and this I actually think it is pretty clear when somebody's a homer and you know went to listen win winning a guy makes a mistake. That I I am sympathetic to the players because they know better than I know you know better than nine now. It's a big game failure and it's pretty. I've I've tried to throw a baseball from third base to first base accurately and you know people to sort of a ground ball than ever as he throws to first Al. It's a very very difficult game it's difficult to hit a ball if you go into a batting cage and try to notable seventy miles an hour it's difficult these guys have to have. The kind of hand eye coordination they got to start swinging when the ball has late you know fifteen feet from the pitcher's hand but tell me show you just in the players and coaches if it doesn't intend to finish and I don't like homers. It's a question of chemistry. I thought when when Jerry came back. And mystery of the three terrific it was fantastic instrument David Ortiz was in the Booth at the day that that he came back and think. When the domes domes. With which unless there's there's she jokes I cheering going to try and I can do whatever he wants you know eight and he can do the games from his living room to lie. So how do you deal with the players when I kept a player wants to hear. Somebody saying nice things about they know that these guys travel would them on the plane they think of them as a member of the team. Yet their job is actually to applaud but just wanna hear that so how did get a player to understand at the same time. Tom of be able to appease the of the the viewer who's watching the game looks at that it's actually insist. He's honest and fright but he wants the Red Sox too he's trying to beat up on the reds nice. And it better than I did I mean for the players who who I don't when they're listening in this press if they can they should be. He should be folk like joint venture by problem where when you know. Boston's is tough place to place some some players thrive here in some players don't you know get a thicker skin I mean am I trying to idea. I'm more sympathetic to a minimum might my feeling is let the broadcasts. Be honest be personable. Informative. And and you know. And get over it if if you think that to a certain now. Seriously who took a shot we had a special act kind of did his thing in and know everything blew up in house I think you guys want more honesty you know I think you. You watch a game on Sunday happens you don't you don't want to be glossed over because you guys to kind of emotional about it too as well. So but then the at a lot of these guys that want to know a lot of money and open even wanna do TV you know or games all the ex players you know body guys determine. Who's in who's does it just whoever can do what type of thing though between the assault. You you know I I love Tim Wakefield these lesions are close personal friend and you know I said to him one day you know would you ever consider doing. You know then the broadcasting gaming should you know. It's tough because he knows he knows how hard it is and and even if a guy he is is failing he knows that you look he's trying his best self. He he was not. Comfortable at doing that. IE I think though that that the best analysts and and output to Jerry and invest collar guys and put Gerry and and I have a way of of of being entertaining and informative and on that cell you know. But if you want your players. Attacking him verbally on the airplane embarrassing him. And that's going to be the environment he has to deal with because he's just doing his job. IE at like I've I've been on record I I thought that there was a way of handling that it wasn't handled appropriately fund got a problem with Lou. And I here's somebody says is and there. Radio home of say Lou you know I wasn't fair. You call him every day for all of you know it's an idea I don't know I don't barrels or all. I would think that that Dennis sector sleeping from start to finish in me finished when the players dressed in the locker room that whole thing. Had to be disappointing. Was how it was handled and every aspect correct as far as ownership goes. Well I thought we. A disappointing I was you. John. And Sam and I separately called. Benefit apologized. It was addressed in it was addressed in the in the clubhouse and you know turn the page you speak personally with dung David Price. Element in the any remain ownership speak. I penalties again. If you were to speak to this especially the guys have put a I think it did the way it was handled was it was not how I would handle him. If I got a problem and you Krishna on top I'll tell you off the air power who mobile what what is it about. This is just his. Personality I don't know if it's below and then I had and I really aren't I glad I stayed for these diseases and isn't. That's what should be good well let me ask us how was your how would you classify because I know Larry Lucchino is no longer. A around her say you know and also evil empire thing when he goes first ethical over. How would you describe your relationship with the New York Yankees since I ample water shoes were introduced. In my mind is would I would say it says frost. Bit worse than maybe has been passed. You know we we again in terms of turning the page and I'm moved down I think it. The only thing I can say is that the people in glass houses shouldn't throw stuff and it is not as I say the that beginning and end his own comments and because I was amazed that I'm Joseph Kennedy has talked to rain moving. Well you know article I mean the fact is I do think this was in minor technical fouls by SH a cache was being childish veto as you know I start with the fact that this was unfortunately raised to a level that it never should if there's this entrees and don't turn the page here means ramps up. Well that they hatred and pads well I don't population it would be great for baseball the Yankees play and it's such an idea and the postseason and that got on every part of. It kind of looking like that part of it is good for ratings fuel did did get excited about it they choose aside its its contention it's it's yeah people aren't are. I don't know what it did you think everything and has an appropriate and know all yeah fell out of it's it's it's it gets its I think he should get suspended again you wanna get things out of the game that don't belong in the game sucker punching a superstars not should not be in the game. And then it goes through the night so you go to prom with Joseph Torre today. The kind of you all right guys plus I'd hate to be here does it was in front page calling yeah it is always president guy this guy gets drilled drilled and Annie. In the heat get. Nothing so. Now wouldn't I would have to go to Bob see that we've treated that's the problem when you get into the the incident with the Red Sox and yankees that's the problem that guys don't get on the phone. And pitching each other. So you sit there and everybody tries to take pirates and we're gonna turn the page and it on the same thing in New York which turned the page gave each other even more personal as I try to. And there's. With frosting exactly that's an Oscar was in my way of putting his feet and you mentioned something about it is that good for ratings talk about ratings because I battled these guys read some baseballs dying where where where are the ratings. For the Red Sox right now for in this business and well we are up first this a year ago interstate. It's you know those not dying as. What's not then let the last couple games the ratings have been very good now and there's no question that the AM. And we're all excited to football ambush or does better than baseball and it didn't this army should be smiling they're down. I don't hear that sports passports dying to well well well when we play dead last Sunday and again. Of Canada who played for England patriots replaced and wanna partner Nathan Nathan Clark with clean look at a let that baseball as a 160 games though not every game can be is. Urgent is as a football too you lock up from a year ago this was naturally. Short time ago down 20% don't want battle we've been we've been out the last. Much of these ratings this football trying to do right now because they're down and they took a big hit last weekend. We're talking about the millennial senior in the TV business and then in the TV in the entertainment business for years. That more deals are viewing everything differently there are absorbing this stuff we different means. How much of that this has to change what we get away from networks we get away from the street TV that we get back on devices we get streaming that. That's got to change end. The analytics that we use. To determine what our audience sizes. Must change because we've got archaic methods. Or NN. Incredibly. Dynamic. World right where. At one point the only place you could watch the Red Sox is if you went through your television or listen to and on the radio. Now we've all these mobile devices. You can just follow the score of the game and fifteen cents you don't need to commit to. The three hour broadcast. We and there's a lot of churn is you know a member cast them as if you know you're getting F five rating of I don't know whether and getting into the weeds too much but. Those that that 5% of the audience. You're you're you're really getting 20% of the audience but you know they're coming in they're coming out there watching for thirty minutes and I know very few people who turn on the game in the first inning and watch it for all nine innings so. We've got to adapt to that I think it's it's that it challenge because. You know I I guess I am I at bad act and you know I see that Hanley Ramirez hit a double I don't need to watch that thing Damon NASA has its its coming from my app. I do feel that the product needs to be improved we talked about this. Eventually I believe there will be pitch clocked at home sooner rather than later. Its the period of inaction between the action that we've got to address. And and anything we can do to make the product better is only gonna increase ratings but. You know I'm not in which are interested in in increasing ratings for I'm interest in the product being better the by product that will be. More people watch one final thing. Have you made any recommendations for what. The former jockey weight should be. We have a couple that I think we're gonna just let this thing certain. The put on the back burner and goal tees so you don't Sundays where only drive. Like little honey. Four and I don't watch on hold on hold on. Borrowing over Garcia parent. Got a better record what what is it with a sweater wearing it would be a player or awarded the would. Would there not be an actual person. In that name that might have a meeting. Vs an individual who might be a player that says the city would. Would very strongly prefer it and not the media person whether the player and whose line. So that says it has to be debts or teases out. Owns this now care at. Yes I. I got on that note go back into tennis. A top thanks for him and I'm having our exit Tom Warner chairman. Or Red Sox.
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