Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington was a guest of the Dennis & Callahan show on Thursday. Cherington was asked for his thoughts on former Sox manager Terry Francona’s book, which is at times critical of Sox ownership, particularly over the final season of Francona’s tenure.
“It seems to me the best history is written with some distance in the rear-view mirror,” Cherington said. “At some point people will look back at the period between 2004 and 2011 and it will go down as the greatest period in Red Sox history. And except for the players — the [Jason] Variteks, [Dustin] Pedroias, [David] Ortizes and [Curt] Schillings of the world — the five people who had more to do with that than anyone else was John [Henry], Tom [Werner], Larry [Lucchino], Theo [Epstein] and Tito. It seems to me, at some point, those five people will be seen in the appropriate light.”
The book details a meeting in 2010 that included Henry, Werner, Lucchino and Francona. In that meeting, Werner complained about declining TV ratings and said the team needed to win in “more exciting fashion.” Cherington, who said he has not read the book, was quick to defend the ownership group.
“The first priority, the absolute first priority, definitely including John, Tom and Larry, is to win. That’s what drives us,” Cherington said. “The first priority will always be to win and be aggressive toward winning, and that’s up to us in baseball operations to sort of manage that in a way to make good decisions, and we’ve made our fair share of mistakes and we learned from some of those mistakes. That said, any business is trying to be as good as it possibly can be and in every conceivable area. And part of that for the Red Sox is to understand our fans and what they are looking for, and there’s things we are looking for to give them what they want.”
In November of 2010, members of the Sox front office and ownership met at Fenway to look at results of a $100,000 marketing research project the team had commissioned the previous July. In the Francona book, Epstein was critical of the results, which suggested the Sox needed to add “reality-TV aspects of the game and good-looking stars,” and said the signing of Carl Crawford and trade for Adrian Gonzalez were in direct response to the study. Cherington, part of the front office at the time, was asked if this was an accurate portrayal.
“I’ll agree to disagree with Theo on this one,” Cherington said. “But if any way it contributed to poor baseball decisions it’s on us in baseball ops and it’s also on ownership for because we work together to manage the demands in Boston and manage the pressure to win and do it in a way that allows us to have success in Boston year after year.”
As for the 2013 Red Sox, Cherington concedes that perhaps the team hasn’t made any huge splashes in the free agent market, but the general manager said this team can contend in the AL East.“Maybe we didn’t make the one headline move or haven’t to this point, I think a lot of our heavy lifting is done, but I do think we’ve added strength to a lot of different areas to the roster, a lot of areas we had holes in, I think in aggregate we feel pretty good that we’re a strong, deep team with a chance to be deep in a lot of areas to match up with anyone,” Cherington said. “We think this is a team that will be very competitive, going to contend and match up with any team in the AL East. “
Tom discussed Peyton's record breaking night.
We check in with Tom E for a full breakdown of the Patriots close win over the Jets.
Dr Nick Leung for the Newton Wellesley Orthopedics Association joins Ben to talk about Rajon Rondo's broken hand.
The debut edition of the We Hate Dwyane Wade show. Ben and Sam preview the Celtics and talk about other summer news around the NBA.
Joe Castiglione does his annual wrap-up of the season by reading the poem by Bart Giamatti.
Mut and Rob discuss the "kids" and the variety of young bodies the Red Sox called upon this season. Specifically, they look at Bogaerts and Bradley, Jr. and where things went wrong. They give their opinions on which one will right the ship next season.
Description: Red Sox farm director Ben Crockett looks back at the 2014 Red Sox prospect season by answering listener questions about a number of Red Sox prospects as well as broader issues and themes in the farm system.
We check in with NESN's Jack Edwards for a Bruins-Canadiens preview, live from French-Quebec.
Pierre McGuire joins MFB to analyze last night's Bruins-Red Wings game and preview tonight's game against the Canadiens. Pierre also offers his take on fighting in the NHL.
Tom Brady discussed Peyton's record breaking night.
Tim Hasselbeck on Peyton vs. Brady.
The guys opened the show discussing Peyton Manning's record setting night in Denver.
Red Wine Baths and a Blind Jake Peavy
ESPN Insider, Adam Schefter, discusses Rex Ryan's job security, Marvin Lewis concussion comments, as well as the Patriots-Jets
We discuss the Bruins loss in Montreal, and more importantly their loss of composure, and whether or not Lucic and Marchand are pulling their weight.
Mikey, Villani and Lenny are talking about the 2004 Red Sox on the anniversary of Game 4 of the ALCS with Dave Roberts steal abd Bill Mueller driving him in and what it was like to witness.
Mikey, Mut and Lenny are talking about the Patriots and how they have stacked up through the years and what got them to the three championships and five Super Bowl appearances in the Brady-Belichick era.
Mikey and Mut take a call from someone who wants to criticize Belichick the GM and his history of drafting players and making moves in the draft.
This week Pete gives the listeners a brief, but enthusiastic history lesson the ineptitude of the New York Jets. They also help you set your final rosters for your Week 7 fantasy teams.
Predictions for the Revs moving into the playoffs, Jurgen Klinsmann vs Don Garber, and Ben needs a new European team to root for.
Rodney Harrison on the Pats close win over the Jets.More from this show
John Rooke is in studio as Scott Cordischi joins us from Princeton, as he preps his Brown Bears for today’s game. They open the first hour looking at the Patriots win over the struggling NY Jets and the(not so) controversial referee action resulting in the game winning blocked kick. John goes solo in hour two, taking more of your calls, texts and tweets. Midnight Madness is back for NCAABB and Rex Ryan takes time from licking his wounds, to join us for “3 Things”.More from this show
Craig and Larry start breaking down Thursday night's 27-25 win over the Jets. Amendola had a huge TD catch. Tom Brady looked good, (but so did Geno.) Also, Chris Jones got some redemption with a last-second FG block.More from this show