BOSTON (CBS) – Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington held court in the dugout on Wednesday at Busch Stadium in St. Louis before the assembled media. He was asked about the need to acquire veteran pitching in the offseason after recently jettisoning Jon Lester and John Lackey out of town.
His response was very interesting:
“We just want to be good. We want to build a good team and win games. There’s different ways to do that. It’s nice to have an ace at the top of the rotation, but you can be good in different ways. We’ve had really good teams with [an ace]. There’s plenty of good teams this year, contenders that will be in the playoffs that don’t have that. We just have to build a good team and build a team to win games. We know pitching is a big part of that, and there’s different ways to build a pitching staff.”
CSNNE’s Sean McAdam joined Hardy and Mike Flynn, filling in for Andy Gresh and Scott Zolak, to discuss Cherington’s comments.
“I found myself kind of questioning that. They don’t want to drive up the asking price of free agents or teams that might have pitching to deal with this winter. The Red Sox know they cannot go into next year with Clay Buchholz, Joe Kelly, and three pretty young untested pitchers in their rotation.”
McAdam went deeper into what he thinks that Cherington was getting at.
“I suspect what Ben was getting at was it isn’t necessary to have a Max Scherzer, or a Justin Verlander or a Clayton Kershaw, but if you have five starters who give you a chance to win on most nights you’ll be okay.”
However, McAdam disagrees with that line of thinking, and believes baseball teams do needs a no. 1 pitcher.
“Even the years in which the Red Sox did not win it all, you go back to whether it was ’67 with Jim Longboard or ’75 with Louis Tiant, or ’86 with Roger Clemens, teams that won pennants all had true no. 1 starters — certainly in ’04 with Pedro and Curt Schilling and ’07 with Schilling and Beckett.”
Listen below for the full discussion, including Joe Kelly’s Red Sox debut and much more: