Larry Lucchino warns fans not to get too attached to 2013 veterans
Red Sox ownership completely revamped the team coming out of an abysmal 2012 with the sole purpose of improving, and improve they did. And even though fans grew to love many of their World Series-winning Sox, they’re probably going to have to let that go.
Team CEO and President Larry Lucchino said at the Wang Theatre premier of the Official 2013 World Series Film that going into 2014, it will be very difficult for the Sox to repeat the formula that led to them becoming World Champions. Lucchino said that the market is only going up, and that handing out short-term, big money contracts and avoiding losing draft picks may not be as possible as it was last season.
AP Photo/Michael Dwyer
“Fewer years, more dollars — it’s our preferred model, but you can never get exactly what you want,” said Lucchino, as reported by WEEI.com. “We still value the draft picks enormously, and our behavior has shown that. We still prefer shorter to longer-term contract. We have a presumption against really long-term contracts. A lot of things we did last year proved to be successful, at least in the short term, so I think we’re going to behave accordingly going forward.
“You need to have a diverse portfolio of contracts. Some will be longer than you want. Some will be heavy at the front end. You’ve got to mix the structure of all the contracts so you have the kind of diversity you need for long-term stability.”
With Jacoby Ellsbury, Stephen Drew, Jarrod Saltalamacchia, and Mike Napoli all up for free agency, it’s going to be tough to hang on to all four.
“One of the lessons I learned a long time ago was that you can’t fall in love with your veterans. You can’t do that,” said Lucchino. “That’s not the way to run the railroad. We are not going to be a stand-pat team. That’s just not the way we run the railroad here. That’s probably a losing proposition every year. Every year has to have its own personality. Every year will have a different personality, composition as well as personality.”
Still, Sox management is confident in their rookies, and expects much more from them going forward, which may alleviate some worries about what will happen to the Sox if they lose some star power.
“I think that Xander still has some refining of his game,” said Lucchino. “He just turned 21 in the postseason. Jackie Bradley, taking you back a few months as to the views of him by experienced baseball people, he’s going to have a long and productive career. I feel very confident about them, as confident as you can be with someone at that age and stage.”