WEEI>On Demand>>Larry Lucchino, President and CEO of the Boston Red Sox, sits down with D&C in Fort Myers

Larry Lucchino, President and CEO of the Boston Red Sox, sits down with D&C in Fort Myers

Feb 21, 2014|

Larry Lucchino joins Dino, Gerry and Kirk for his annual Spring Training visit with Dennis and Callahan. He talks about the key factors in the World Series title run and what the 2014 edition of the Red Sox will look like.

Transcript - will not be 100% accurate

Or 3-D. CES jetBlue park as they are up putting up. Another world championship better here know Fort Myers, Florida joining us of the broadcast site as he does every year is sort of bizarre. Official kick off to work time down here the president and CEO the Boston Red Sox Larry -- good morning Larry how -- -- morning guys I'd like the -- sure that the players have taken turn the page when did you and ownership during the. -- Well I can't speak for all of ownership but I think I've got a pretty good estimate and that's when we get down here really we grew up -- -- I felt free to I wanted to celebrate -- to. Go places was the trophy and do things like that doesn't have season. But it seemed to me that once we got here and and had. The full squad assembled it was a time for us to turn the proverbial page. There were probably a hundred reasons that you won the World Series beating the cardinals in game number six what was the one imperative the one critical one in your mind at that put you over the top. Oh boy. It's so hard to two. Do you separate the factors some so many things went went so well. The health of the club chemistry of the club to contributions from so many different people I think favorite. David Ortiz is so one thing that kind of put us. That's the -- -- looking for a coach may be co GM currently that was beautiful day weather that was there's a little they need to force me to. To choose and it's it's a somewhat unfair question because it inevitably overlooks contributions a lot of Peter along the way. But there there at the alliance the confidence that exists with the bullpen. Into the game and and David's. -- performance. Let's get down the real question everyone wants to know from you Larry what did you see -- bloody Valentine anyway. Just -- This man man. Yeah yeah yeah yeah and it's ended -- you did strategist John Ferrell in 2012 well that's true up and don't worry about will fare under the of the they would never seemed so relaxed he answered I'll give us the lineup and don't he gave us the opening that lineup. We didn't know he's got Pedroia hit second Ortiz third we didn't know that until the pro am joined -- and reveal that but. -- it strikes me that you've been here how many is too well the city's thirteenth. Have you ever had a better time and more relaxed. A more joyous time heading down here to pour money. It's no I think that. I think that's fair to say there was something special about the win last year the way it happened the worst -- first thing the idea that all you guys in the media were completely wrong there's so many sources satisfaction. But. And of course -- and strong element that that came into it. EU it was terrific but there's also down here right now maybe as a consequence of that than them because of the people we have seen in leadership positions here. There is a good vibes coming out of camp there's a good feeling down here. And what was I going to the tail lines John -- made a major point. The closeness and the unity of the club last year and a and -- to all signs of point and after. Question here limited any negative publicity by buying up one of the bigger newspapers yet Ellison elusive -- -- -- grateful. I mean I Hugo Chavez jealous. But -- there's no one threatening to walk out a note that Ortiz thing is the biggest issue we have. Is that a big issue to it seems almost like ownership has resigned itself to. Getting it done. Like I think we would like to use to get something done with David and that anything that relates the David Ortiz is is a big issue. He's been such a critical part of success of the team so a decade. He's the only one I guess who's been here on the in uniform. Since we. For all three of our wins in the last decade and the otherworldly place both of for the Red Sox and baseball. It's aren't those girls are remarkable. And so anything in the -- they're really serious is is so well being is focused. Possible distraction -- qualify as a semi big -- is that a conversation to be having you know whether ownership front office if Ortiz and -- publicly and say you won new deal of saying to you being pressured by Ortiz. To do you responding to what he's saying write your -- would you call. Well we are responding to their request that came to us from. David representative. I think that's affairs say he really wasn't to -- -- but get the kind of years that they. It's and you're two stages career that he is not entirely surprising. Look at my second unfair question because -- ask you to read the mind of David Ortiz David once another year do you think David wants another year because he is convinced 100% Larry. That he will be viable a viable productive baseball player two years from now. Or in his heart of -- he thinks he might not be. Very hard for me to put myself and David David teases mindset. Might and initial reaction to your question is because he thinks he's going to be a very good player for years to come. And he wants is security that comes from them that wanna play this year religious still Bible and get fifty million dollars after the -- That may be the case but eight if you are coming off a historic year ending it with a historic success the club. It's it seems. The fire on the other side it was seemed to me it would be propitious time -- -- -- Com bubble economy as limited security act that -- players who who really like security and -- Dealt with players and economic team. Players who really do like security Tony Gwynn. Even the middle of his career he knew he gave it to news and for years to come. He loved the security you know I mean this contract was places certain people -- that you have that mindset. David -- one of those that you we use prized by Ryan Dempster is announcement and in all your years. How many players have you seen do that walk away voluntarily walk away from thirteen million bucks. I was not only surprised I was I was. Shocked. Yet when I heard him explain it to and -- -- a -- more about the rationale for it. My admiration for him increased dramatically. I haven't three I don't remember any other guys. Done that did have one guy for the euros to talked about how we should give back -- his salary. Because of the years had a big guys who he had talked about it and I. It goes McCain came close. -- Israel on this team was was exceptional last year -- hope you guys. You've probably talked on the he was such a leaders such as source of these solid chemistry came together last year. He is going to be missed enormously -- one of the most. Well liked and respected players -- Associate with -- hope we can get -- come back and do some things this year. Maybe maybe for -- and maybe some of the way it would loved -- We love to have with a were achieved. He worked my idol got to shape there's -- and number 30 I don't. I don't think he's silent reporter though I had I had a Nazi stuff -- -- -- -- -- -- -- it doesn't look good and hold him back hold me -- yeah. -- active and if -- and I love negotiating contracts immediate swabs tested. If I -- -- Jon Lester comes it comes in there right now today -- this five years 100 million dollars. Would you sign that deal. Not can negotiate visit accidentally hit a good question I don't know eight EE EE thanks oh man I don't I don't reeker I think -- -- it sets the parameters for private negotiation and a public forum over the public Airways I think that these stupid thing to respond to. But it was nice try what he will what I would do if he came in years and thank him. -- the extraordinarily gracious things he said about the Red Sox such franchise and his commitment to the Red Sox. It's also rare to hear players so retirement dancers rarity it's also -- to -- rarity here player. Speeches I candidly as openly and forthrightly as Jon Lester -- about his desire here. And he's one of the few because Pedroia that we know took hometown discount Lester wants to. Mike Napoli we think it turned down any -- offers he had big utilization. I wanna be there did you ever -- again. Think you'd see the day it would. Boston the Red Sox would be the destination would be a destination place for ballplayers and to whom do you give the credit what. First Santa question that every -- -- day yes absolutely envisioned it I mean that's a critical part of the success of the team. It starts with a robust farm system you've got to have that the journalists have to have a place for players like to play right players feel respected. Way the fan base is passionate and enthusiastic. And wives or have their wives -- entries that are you got it you've got to have a holistic approach it is it is players experience here. And now yes I did did expect that we would get there I think we have been there before. And now I hope we can stay there for for a long time we're we're not gonna succeed exclusively on the attracting free agents that. And because of the quality of life in Boston wanted to baseball life in Boston but we're gonna succeed. Because of that along -- -- -- who gets the credit. No I think he did that -- a broad base thing I think it starts at the top I think you've got to give. John upon our ownership group is. Some credit for creating a culture creating a making commitment to winning. Players can hear fundamentally about being part of a winning team when you're playing a pickup game this afternoon on the basketball court. -- they're playing pretty in the post season in October these guys are competitive animals and wanna win and and I think that's. That's first and foremost but I certainly would give a lot of credit to. Two. John Farrell and he and his coaches too often we don't. Give -- coaches to credit them blame and they deserve. This is an exceptional group of coaches who have come together and made life for the ball players here. Comfortable and and indeed been helpful and they growth and development of these guys. So -- certainly a bench Arrington and and the baseball operations squad -- me. -- vote of confidence and eight and a pat on the back for assembling the right kind of guys in creating helping to create the right and the chemistry. We can circle back to Lester Ortiz one -- to push a client that lose then what is more compelling more moving. To ownership and front office David Ortiz requesting another year or Jon Lester saying I'll take a hometown discount this is where wannabe. What is more moving this to us notable -- They're Arkansas lottery let's say this they're both the important to us -- -- of the cornerstones on which is franchises built. And so. We we do care about there there mindset. There there frame mind their focus. It was I was moved by. -- -- -- and commitment of the of the franchise. Coming as it did. From the heart. And am I but I'm on. Movie is not the right word for it for David -- negative for David Ortiz but was not entirely surprised by it. Look forward to successful resolution and issues we'll Jacoby Ellsbury be missed that to give -- an obscenity yes yes he will be a concern you. Yeah of course it does of course there's just one of the on certain issues we have what was his team not just story that's in the order that is so role on the team -- training he's trying. Tone that he says defense he provided. And the comfort level that people had with him in with -- place. And of course to get Jackie Bradley junior agrees Sizemore -- two guys who are competing for that position. But. Certainly I'm and I miss the guys. Left and as salty as well there's a lot of the a lot of sentiment because of experiences. Last year and the years we've known these guys. But. As time went -- said before you can't follow in love with veterans in that was then this is now. We talked about this'll what you last June -- toward the end of the year is there. -- organizational shift and some focus with guys like Bogart's Bradley be given the keys to the Carter -- looks like they gonna play every day. From the start the -- -- the -- the case for five there's a little finally listening to me up and tell you this for years get to give these guys China's imports may be unique example. What we are doing it and I'm of the humble concerned there was no talent and site and we know they're getting. He's usually when Kennedy read her -- but this one. It is right -- this -- a game that belongs to young players young people. That we and we had this conversation. Ad nauseam with. Was among ourselves with John diamond and then. Their whole lot of reasons for it the absences and that means gone from the scene of -- absence of other. Enhancing drugs. That's part of part of what's what's resolving this but just having a little faith in -- plays for. Decades younger players to make contributions. And it's it's a tough thing to do there's there's an awful lot of us. Tension between. On that issue that I had in football -- -- sorry in my career in football and I've seen it in in baseball. Setting aside the high profile young players of -- broke the final question. Question for me from the people that you've talked to the from the the stuff that you witness which are -- are saying what Ben is saying give us the name of somebody who we -- -- heard -- you think may behind by the in a year the impact on this baseball team. Policy but young catcher guarantee genie but then there are many guests there's a yes. Again I was. Major League hitting approach as a result he says he was in the minors. I know it's awfully awfully 443. You're I think. Plus he's getting a -- I'm excited just. It's funny how good -- extra. Larry good to talk to you thank you yes race is a great to visit with you enjoy the golf balls enjoy the the luncheon we'll talk did on the -- OK Larry looking at a CEO president Boston Red Sox. I will take a quick timeout 61777979837.

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