Report: MLB to break BoSox-Cubs battle

BY foxsports • January 18, 2012

Major League Baseball commissioner Bud Selig has been asked to settle a months-long battle over what the Cubs must give the Red Sox as compensation for the hiring of Theo Epstein.

According to the Chicago Sun-Times, both sides have requested Major League Baseball to rule on the matter, though the initial overture to Selig was made in late December by Red Sox president Larry Lucchino.

The negotiations started in October when Epstein left the Red Sox after nearly a decade as general manager to become the Cubs' president of baseball operations.

Since Epstein still had a year remaining on his contract, the Red Sox could demand compensation — in the form of a player and/or cash — from the Cubs.

At issue is what the Red Sox can demand as "valuable compensation" for Epstein, who signed a five-year, $18.5 million contract with the Cubs after building two World Series winners in Boston.

Lucchino has reportedly refused to budge from his demand for a top player or a significant collection of prospects as compensation for Epstein.

Veteran baseball officials told the Sun-Times they do not think there is a precedent for this type of situation.

It is unclear how long it will take for Selig to issue a decision or whether he will specifically pick out players to go to the Red Sox.

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