For BoSox, six years for Lester too many?
From the transcript of an interview with Red Sox president and CEO Larry Luchhino, who spoke at length about the club's failure to re-sign Jon Lester:
Lester reportedly signed with the Cubs for six years and $155 million with a vesting option for a seventh year. The Red Sox have openly been reluctant to give out long-term deals of late, and that was something the organization was faced with during the Lester negotiations.
“We have to have one eye on the present and one eye on the future,” Lucchino said. “I would tend to think most baseball fans understandably focus on the next year, the next season. One of Ben Cherington’s jobs is, in fact it is a job for all of us in the senior leadership of the Red Sox, is to keep one eye on what is around the corner — the next couple of years, not right now. John Henry is a brilliant analyst. He’s also an imperialist. He looks and he sees what’s happened and puts it together and sees a track record that is less than encouraging with long-term deals in general. He’s not the only one that has that view.”
Hold on for a second ... Boston Red Sox co-owner John Henry is an imperialist?
We've got ourselves a story here!
Okay, so I went and listened to the actual interview, and what Luchhino actually said is that Henry's an empiricist. Which is quite a different thing, and a much better thing if you're running a baseball team. Even an American baseball team.
It's often said that if you're going to win, you have to pay market rates for free-agent pitching. It seems the Red Sox have other ideas. We'll see if it works again.