WEEI>On Demand>>Larry Lucchino, Red Sox President and CEO, Joins Dennis and Callahan in Fort Myers

Larry Lucchino, Red Sox President and CEO, Joins Dennis and Callahan in Fort Myers

Feb 25, 2012|

Larry Lucchino sits down with the guys to talk about the first full-squad workout of the season, the beautiful new digs aka JetBlue Park where the Sox now call home during Spring Training, and moving on from the "beer and the chicken".

Transcript - will not be 100% accurate

Saturday -- Dennis and Callahan broadcasting live from jetBlue park in Fort Myers, Florida dedication day the presidents of the Boston Red Sox Larry Lucchino joins us here the broadcast -- -- morning -- big day here how big doing it is. Done very exciting and now it's like -- captures the the excitement though 2012 season new facility down here. And he -- the fans -- interest and excited by this team and other players feel like they've got something to prove his a lot of palpable excitement. I think every on through the water ball bowlers in the -- -- -- at -- that's there's the U you left no stone unturned is that -- of their masters that was a big question I know that I know -- -- -- The -- and the -- on the -- we insisted on shade to him for decades -- the ballpark must be in. And those are pretty high levels so like that and people find it quite comfortable a year ago there was nothing here right. Virtually nothing here I would -- a -- the the a year ago on March 4 a year ago. We had that the construction. Robbery commitment yeah yet but I would think groundbreaking of the few months before that they started getting this site rating. But the commencement of construction began on March 4. 2011. That's what I find that remarkable that's when the static kill all the endangered species it -- -- got -- can't leave me we did they get in the way we did it with and the the purview of the environmental laws and -- coach in regulation and there will be replaced and is that what did you want that you didn't -- Oh my goodness and wanna look at it that way I must say we we got. What we think is a state of the art. Unified facility. And sure the idea was not too. Necessarily supported ability beautiful ballpark which I think we have done here with -- -- apart from but that's just one element albeit a major element of it. It's an idea of having all of our players together not separated by a couple of miles then. You know. -- really convenient distance. Everyone together and have the and weight room and rehab proud for program and facilities that would give us a competitive advantage. As compared to what we've had in the past it was all designed originally. My dad did John Henry Tom Warner pushing for him new facility. -- -- But it was designed many years ago to give us a competitive advantage and I think I think it is happened Jonathan Lewis on a fantastic job in bringing this. Now ballpark and this complex to its current state Taylor. -- I've described it -- Starship Enterprise meets Fenway Park. What that pitcher cultural frame of reference. Pretty -- Yeah. That the architects will talk about the cypress trees around here knows me they had some roof. Is meant to reflect. You know there's been -- much -- -- I -- -- I think it's it's -- beautifully and looking ballpark and that it is kind of modern and contemporary on the outside. And -- Fenway traditional on the inside the dimensions irregularities triangle in right center. The replica present -- exactly replica of the wall but it's very similar to the -- seats in the middle which is different now but you're screwed up the right field grandstand -- -- home plate to the -- -- did that knowingly did that knowingly and -- his -- didn't get to face home play that's not ranked. Well and as you guys get out there because there's some great standing room opted to down now on the task people who don't have -- and -- So it we're seeing and it's not exactly. Replica but it certainly inspired by mental look and feel like definitely admire and I think it does. We said earlier this week it's it's two nights Larry you -- guys -- guys off to the BC Rocky to and delegates to spoil this is Stanback the chase and Beckett and Jimmie lost it right back and we got the opportunity -- it and do you worry that there's no question you were not all that you don't -- and these guys. I don't because I I don't think that's the kind of camping and have. That's not to panic campus started out I don't think that's. I'm Bobby Valentine and Tim Bogart's view of how they're gonna run this camp so it's really the the read your regiment that they put into that matters more than the in the few creature -- -- good that they have enough space that they have the right kind of weight room. It's good that we heavily in larger capacity you're at the ballpark. But. That this is not meant to be separated luxury it's meant to be. Good quality so that our players have an opportunity to train and prepare. At 9 o'clock this morning everybody gathered -- believe in the cafeteria the entire squad the ownership and the manager in the general manager I believe spoke. To the players how does that go let's start with Bobby Valentine was a performance. Art. Performance art not sure what you mean it that it went well I would say the meeting went well went for about. 45 minutes. I'm a little reluctance -- about the content of it in any -- -- a look at spirit of that spirit of it was quite positive I think there was a sense that. It is a new chapter to be written and it we cannot do much about. 2011. At this stage. And. And -- should we try. It is about. The newness of 2012. The new team coming together in the new baseball leadership provided I'd venture into an -- -- Valentine. And it's about and the new opportunity. That we have in 2012. To prove something. That I was saying that -- would use we have some. And -- from your vantage point whether it be ownership or or even from a player's perspective the the gamut of emotions from September to now. Would it be fair to say that it was embarrassment. Anger and then determination. And motivation at this point in his stay motivated team because of what happened last September. Yes to answer that last point it's yes I think this team he's he is motivated individuals. Feeling keen sense of motivation. I know we in the front office and ownership is keen sense of motivation. Others. And something exciting about this year. Because of the way it finished last year. Disappointment. It creates -- senses. Responsibility. Here the 100 anniversary creates excitement dictation. New mrs. facility treats -- It some new young players street sense of excitement and expectation. Question marks around the team create some excitement and and -- and certainty that that makes it interesting. I think. What I what I -- now is it. Today. Is the first day of the 2012. Season. We've done it with pitchers and catchers now that night knows that and we've been using the facilities or cutting the ribbon today. Not just on the on this ballpark and complex and 2012 season this is the 2012 season begins now and we get them to prove. -- would have been funny though this was in the cafeteria -- if you serve fried chicken guys that would bat at that -- that Derek know that isn't very cute idea I. I honestly Benitez. We're able to do about it now really are just hitting president now I I -- -- I think. If there's nothing better than the human development -- a serious situation you know I said this earlier today Larry does a lucky in one regard. Is the last three years of spending a half a billion dollars on free agents and signings. Didn't work so I think people are ready for this new. Era of austerity and I I don't know now noticed over jittery with it -- look -- look at -- I tell you -- you know how many calls have you -- -- dammit give. -- sign Beltran and Carlos Beltran. Or they'll throw some money that you know Prince Fielder can work it out that there were people -- let's go with what we got. It didn't work before were all -- with Cody Ross and with -- and Ryan Sweeney and Kabila's going to accept. But watching some of these players to form for this team. You're right there's not the the -- again brand name. Guy that's that's command household. Name. But there's some good talented players -- -- and you know my velocity it's about balances but 25 guys you don't win just with the stars you win with a NGOs. And you get add depth deep depth. And balance so. But it is to a austerity I hope we've proven over ten years it is a commitment to winning. We are payroll this year will be the second highest in all of baseball. Our payroll will be well over I don't know where it's gonna end up because this is day to dynamic thing it moves along -- -- you spend money here in the -- if -- after -- -- -- the right opportunity presents itself we will. And -- so you know attack and -- -- that it's going to be in excess of 190 million dollars by. Most anybody's expectations so. Most but note that time by anyone's measurement stand enemy humans so. Well in excess of 190 million dollars. And that means we have to day. The payroll tax true. They'll -- -- as -- more or less than Liverpool. It's. Don't understand quite well I don't I I don't know what the Liverpool rarely by the way I understand why did you Chinese who writes remarked that analyzed by the Patriots -- Was treated scooter row for a a bunch of reasons as baseball. Operations. Inspired idea and the immediate assessment that. We he'd get the same quality performance. By different deployment at shortstop and that money could be used. Better Q was strength and a couple other areas it was a combination of baseball operations. Evaluation of the productivity position and an eagerness to use. Needed him more payroll flexibility. At that moment so that they could go out and now and bring in some missing pieces. Callahan and I did some extensive scouting -- the double play drill the other day with us spent 1520 minutes their -- in the short stops we wanna -- Iglesias was -- you have to watch. We have to wait a year to see this get the -- at the mentally. And after waited at least several months but I I don't know -- those because of what may -- and Carrington and Bobby Valentine. By I love this kid. Since the day we got in my eyes on this morning before he's. He said of. Full of energy in life he has a spark to him that's. It's really contagious and we all know he can field. At the Major League level and and so. The question is he's only 22. His English is the gotten quite good -- a year ago and I think that's a metaphor for his whole game. As if we wait a little bit for the for the development tempting as it is. To to watch a light as he. As he has a bright light that he presents. If we if we can be patient enough and get something. It's going to be really fun to watch. Was the overturning of the Ryan broadened suspension a punch to the stomach of Major League Baseball. I think it was a -- disappointment to me to Major League Baseball and do and to the people in the commissioner's office who worked so hard. To. I read the game and and can turn to the next next chapter but I don't know about the details. Of why and how I didn't read the transcript and -- or unity. Many stories about it so while I really am not confident. To discuss it in any in any length except do you think it was say. -- -- -- Because after all this was the the findings of medical people not. Not. Political people -- say this the more you read actually the more confusion you get a well most are from new England and uncover more more information get some some kind of clarity it goes the opposite with this story record yeah. Well let's let's talk about the. Boston Red Sox we could say the 2012. The we we we gonna get picked third and by everybody good good how about you know I talked to my friend called beast and CEOs trying to. He thinks -- if we should be in very worried about the Toronto Blue Jays as well overtaking is too so let's give the in the fourth that is -- event for. Boy that's good because I love it and look real out of -- -- -- they kept it there and he's a creative -- They had a high motivation to with a win this year so -- I put us anywhere you want in -- in February we don't care in fact the lower the better. We -- we know we have some improvement on need to be reminded of it and so you know tickets anyway you want to cares. You. You were Bobby Valentine guys early on I think that's fair -- and now everyone loves -- I don't know I don't think that it everyone loves him and asked him this question. He seems like the perfect guy while I was the perfect guy out of MLB for many years nine years life with a all these openings and. Many of which she never even heard his name -- it was -- Jeremy Lin sitting on the bench and wrist in good question I'm thinking racism we've cut back. I think that maybe an element of this stereotypes -- -- tight -- So that that's a notable that is the third that I don't know on what I was gonna make big dog like that they like me and yeah I wanted to make is so different now and analysis on a perfect. Science and evaluation of playing talent of managerial talent not a perfect science images informed. And and Bobby would just sitting at home wiggling. Would he was in Japan winning championships. And -- so he was so practicing isn't his craft and improving his craft and. I said diseases today that I think that. And Harrington and then Bobby Valentine. Our guys have to ground running in their right. People at the right time. For us for this franchise and now I think that has something to with the circumstances have some and do with whether it fit is right. And whether a guy who brings it -- experiences Bobby does is right for a team. Do you we disappointed in the compensation Chris carpenter's. 26 year old mean double and triple. Name sounded good at first and third yeah yeah that together and we were thinking initially top -- a player. Then top prospect the end up and a with the middle of the pack well he's. Very strong armed. Young pitcher who. Pitched in the major leagues last year pitched quite well in in relief very -- we are a -- in September when he pitched with the Cubs eyes against those 95200. Miles an hour. And now -- These two shortage of your question in this is not meant to be reflection on Chris Carpenter were excited to have them and pleased to have them. Overall we -- a little disappointed in the process I think the answer to that is yes. I think the commissioner's office feels that the Cubs are disappointed that you wanna lose. Chris Carpenter and another player's going to be named later. They were -- They didn't feel any player compensation. It was appropriate to -- and so they're disappointed. We're too little disappointed in the commissioner's office probably says to themselves so both sides of disappointed. No one feels as though this was a clear win maybe we did our mediation -- right. Final question for me if you had a do over again would you give up your leverage and let the he'll leave before the consultation was done because wasn't that deal done it up I mean you know came over -- cup point. Well we do that we did at that point secured the fact that player compensation had to be provided. So that. We did get something at that point you know certainly if we were doing it over it to be greater clarity of the specifics of the compensation. And that's the only Major League Baseball would like to have it done. But the net result it is it. Is that we have a -- changed TO is where he wants to be. You wanna be in Boston wanted to be in Chicago. So he's out there and sharing -- and could not via hungrier. And happier more prepared than guys do to take the -- of baseball operations department. And then. And and through that process we ended up with Bobby Valentine. So we don't just look at the the compensation that we're getting in these two players. We look at the state of the franchise right now. In is it in good shape Agassi is it poised. Two to have that kind of positive successful seasons that we want and I think to institute that is yes and in that sense the offseason was successful how many people expect to get the big dedication today. Oh I don't know it's. The with the ribbon cutting world who -- supposed to -- so hundred people dignitaries and all that. But the relevant today is the open house opening this facility to citizens of Lee County. Down here to -- there are no words from Boston knowing wandered down here. It's immediately put a ball park is open today open house to put him wander around Miller around all afternoon. And check it out and now people are very curious is David ballpark in particular and the complex as a whole. Both have gotten great reviews but did something really. A beautiful about the ballpark and intriguing about the Fenway asked him -- element of -- I think people are gonna spend a lot of hours in here today. Checking it down now what's your responsibility and cutting the -- they need to balloon animals and face painting I -- I know I think any Time -- got to face. -- we have with whom we share this around. I'm not sure exactly what I have I think a and Prussia home plate a very often yeah excellent Jeff -- places -- -- -- -- will enjoy your day and tiger and Phil have thanks for taking some buzz is that unbelievable. Mattingly is in the Callahan I guess I kinda like Mike in that case -- -- Hey he likes it he already had like any good. I wanted to come down here find something that criticize it's it's this a couple of the -- in game there was speeding tickets. He's not gonna invite him are you -- homeland right. Yeah golf isn't -- media and he's gotten on nobody out and other than the fact that she killed that that pain after that beautiful -- it just live right here. It is to get credible what they have. And I had thank you for us for the compliments about the ballpark enemies say one more time. John Henry Tom Warner. Myself our whole organization. And we didn't use to it created beautiful injuries. Platforms. Conflicts we did it for a competitive advantage. And I think we have that kind of competitive and in Providence. Enjoy the day Larry thanks thanks I guess they just -- Callahan eight Saturday addition here at jetBlue park will continue. This time out.

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