Larry Lucchino: Ben Cherington ’empowered’ to make a big deal

Red Sox president Larry Lucchino said this morning that general manager Ben Cherington is ’empowered’ to make a big deal to improve the team before the July 31 trading deadline.

Lucchino, in an interview on WEEI’s Dennis and Callahan Show, was asked if it was possible the team would make a “bold move” following the news on Wednesday that the Miami Marlins had inquired about outfielder Carl Crawford.

“Yes, I do, I think that Ben feels empowered to do it, I think he’s got the capacity to do it,” Lucchino said. “We have talked frequently about boldness, that you’ve got to know when to be bold and know when to be somewhat more conservative and methodical, but this is a club that’s been built on bold moves over the years, going way back to the Nomar Garciaparra trade as but one example.


“There should be no doubt in anyone’s mind that Ben Cherington and the entire baseball operations department and the extent that [owners] John [Henry], Tom [Werner], and I are involved in it, are all pointed toward working hard for July 31.”

However, Lucchino cautioned that the team’s approach does not necessarily mean a major trade will definitely happen.

“Just look at our track record. For years, we’ve tried to do things at the deadline if we are in the hunt and we certainly feel we are in the hunt,” Lucchino said. “We’ll do what we can, but that doesn’t guarantee … again, it’s not a supermarket you can walk into and say I’ll take one of these and one of these, you’ve got to find a willing partner to work with, it’s got to be a fit, but are we exploring that avenue? Absolutely.”

Among other topics Lucchino discussed:

On the Carl Crawford trade rumors: “This rumor was because of Dan Jennings, he’s the guy from the Marlins’ front office who drafted Carl Crawford, he’s been up in Boston scouting, presumably Carl Crawford and others, and when Ben let us know about the fact there had been an inquiry, and given the encouragement that we offer regarding being bold, I’m sure he said ‘well, what do you guys have in mind, what are you talking about?’ That’s just par for the course this time of year, you explore all possibilities.”


On reports of discord in the clubhouse: “Do I think the managers in general have the support of the 25-man roster all the time? No, I think there are decisions that are made, players can be miffed or disappointed they’re not in the lineup or they were pinch-hit for, or something that happened.”

“But by and large I think it is a very cohesive clubhouse with guys who like each other, teammates who pull for each other. I think there’s a set of really good, positive personalities down there. It’s one of the most cooperative clubhouses we’ve had here in a long time.”

On pitcher Daniel Bard: “I for one certainly predict that Daniel Bard will be back and make a real contribution to this team, albeit in a different role.”

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