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Sox don't buy reports that Theo is a done deal

Posted by Nick Cafardo, Globe Staff  October 20, 2011 12:06 PM

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So how does the Theo Epstein to the Cubs compensation issue get resolved?

Does Bud Selig intervene and bring the sides together to promote a quicker resolution?

Obviously, as of this morning there was disagreement from the Cubs side and the Red Sox side about the status of the talks.

The actual people involved in the talks - GM-to-be Ben Cherington and owner John Henry - felt there was much work to do before an agreement is in place, while the Cubs side where Tom Ricketts, team president Crane Kenney and assistant GM Randy Bush obviously have a different view per reports out of Chicago via sources that the teams are close to hashing it out.

Can't imagine the Red Sox folding their tents and not coming out of it with the prospect or prospects they earmarked. The Cubs can't possibly believe they can get Epstein without paying a significant price, can they?

Certainly the ball is rolling toward Epstein naming his staff and taking San Diego GM Jed Hoyer and his former Red Sox scouting director Jason McLeod with him to Chicago. McLeod will be Epstein's assistant GM, while Hoyer would be GM and Epstein the president of baseball operations.

While the staff is all presumed done, it may not be done if the Cubs don't give up one of their top guys, preferably Trey McNutt, their top pitching prospect. The Cubs want to be able to tell their fans that they got Epstein without giving anything up. The Red Sox need to be able to tell fans they got something. So that's how things stand.

At some point the reports - and the optimism must be coming from Chicago - will likely be accurate as the sides appear to be working all out to make something happen.

There's also no evidence that the Red Sox have asked Major League Baseball to waive its blackout rule of no major announcements for the off-day (tomorrow), only because no deal has yet been consummated, at least according to two major Red Sox officials.

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