BOSTON (CBS) — This week’s edition of Inside Baseball with Dan Roche and Tony Massarotti turned the focus from the field up to the owners’ box, after Red Sox president and CEO Larry Lucchino announced that he will be stepping down at the end of this season.
The first part of the discussion centered on the direction of the Red Sox going forward without Lucchino. Sam Kennedy will take over as president, but not CEO. Tony Mazz said that the Sox will need a head of baseball operations who has a foundation in baseball, not business.
“If they want to keep Ben Cherington there, you can say, ‘Fine, they don’t have Larry Lucchino there anymore looking over his shoulder.’ But they do have John Henry and Tom Werner there, and I feel like that dynamic is not comfortable to me as a baseball fan,” Mazz said. “Because you have the owner of the team and another partner looking over Cherington’s shoulder.”
Mazz suggested the Red Sox bring in a team president whose basis is in baseball, not business.
“I would love to see them bring in a veteran baseball guy … I mean an evaluator,” Mazz said. “Someone who has their foundation in player evaluation and who can look at a player and say, ‘We’re going to get that guy — not because he’s 26, not because his good years are coming up and the projection based on sabermetrics is this. We want that guy because has has good stuff and he’s going to be good for the next four years.’ That’s what I’m looking for.”
As for the 2015 squad, Rochie and Mazz discussed expectations for Henry Owens’ MLB debut, which will take place Tuesday night at Yankee Stadium.
“This is the guy, really, that a year ago was regarded as their best pitching prospect,” Mazz said. “This spring, [Brian] Johnson and [Eduardo] Rodriguez kind of passed Owens a little bit. There was a suggestion that those two had flown by on the depth chart, [Owens] wasn’t necessarily developing as well as the team would have liked. Of late, the performance has been a lot better — still a few too many walks for a lot of people’s liking. But at this stage, it’s about 2016 and beyond now. And in a lot of ways, they’re throwing him right into the frying pan. Forget the fire — it is right into Yankee Stadium, good ballpark for left-handed pitchers but first-place-caliber team, intimidating place. We’ll see what kind of poise there is there.”
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