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Announcement today

Posted by David Lefort, Boston.com Staff  December 12, 2005 12:42 PM

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Six weeks of confusion will apparently come to an end this afternoon.

Maybe.

The Red Sox will hold a press conference at Fenway Park today at 3:30 p.m. to make an announcement about the restructuring of their baseball operations department. It is expected that Ben Cherington and Jed Hoyer will be named co-GMs, with Theo Epstein possibly returning to advise them.

NESN will broadcast the press conference live. Check back shortly after 3:30 for complete details.

Will Epstein be part of today's announcement? We'll find out soon enough, but ESPN's Peter Gammons reported that the Sox will leave Epstein out of today's press conference.

That arrangement will be worked out in time, Gammons reported.

For the last few days, several media outlets have reported that the Sox were working to bring back Epstein in an advisory position, and speculated as to how the balance of power would work. Some highlights ...

From Saturday’s Boston Globe:

  • Epstein would advise Jed Hoyer and Ben Cherington, the members of the Sox' baseball operations team who are expected to serve as co-general managers for the 2006 season, barring a last-minute reversal by ownership. It is not known whether Epstein, who on Oct. 31 declined a three-year, $4.5 million contract offer to remain as GM, has been formally approached yet by the team's principal owner, John W. Henry, or team chairman Tom Werner, but Henry and Werner have made their intentions known internally, the sources said.

    From Sunday’s Lawrence Eagle-Tribune:

  • Epstein's new title may not be permanent, however, with some indications pointing to his return to the organization's general manager position as early as spring training. The switch will largely depend on redefining the duties of president/CEO Larry Lucchino, whose role in the organization continues to be revamped in order to pave the way for Epstein's re-emergence.

  • At one point, outside consultation was brought in to analyze Lucchino's role within the organization.

    From today’s New York Times:

  • How the new structure will work is unclear. Lucchino would not confirm Epstein's role, but he said in a telephone interview: "The door has been left ajar for some time. That's obvious to everyone. So we'll see what happens over time."

    Was he saying that the door had been left ajar for Epstein to return? "We haven't replaced him yet and he hasn't taken a position yet, so by definition it's been left ajar," Lucchino said.

    Lucchino, in a telephone interview, initially did not want to talk about his position, but when he was asked if it would change, he said, "I don't believe there will be any material changes in my responsibilities."

    John Henry, the principal owner, was more direct. "People currently speculating about a reduced role for Larry Lucchino don't know what they are talking about," Henry said in an e-mail response to my question. "It's absurd."

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