The deadline to agree upon the “significant compensation” owed the Red Sox from the Cubs is today. To date, the 2 sides still can’t agree upon the “value” of Theo Epstein and what the Red Sox should receive from the Cubs in return for allowing him leave with 1 year remaining on his contract as GM of Boston. If the Cubs and Red Sox can’t agree upon the minor league prospects to be traded to the Red Sox, MLB Commissioner Bud Selig will likely need to intervene to determine the compensation.
New Red Sox GM Ben Cherington said this the other day: “We’ve always felt like that was a possibility. It’s a difficult deal to work out. It’s hard to quantify the value of a Theo Epstein. I have an idea of it, and Theo doesn’t think he’s worth as much as I think he is, and we haven’t bridged that gap.”
What we do know is that the sides have reached an understanding of how to treat other Red Sox employees who may want to follow Theo to Chicago. Cherington went on to say: “If there’s an opportunity for one person to go to Chicago that’s clearly a better opportunity, then that’s good, we don’t want to stand in anyone’s way. There’s an understanding the Cubs won’t raid the Red Sox and the Red Sox aren’t going to raid the Cubs. It should be a good relationship going forward.” A couple of key thing to note there – 1. Cherington specifically said 1 person leaving the Red Sox, so don’t expect a mass exodus or “heads will roll”. 2. It has to be a “promotion” for the person leaving, just like Theo went from Red Sox GM to Cubs President. 3. I love how he threw in the fact that the Red Sox won’t “raid the Cubs”, like they would ever really do that. The Red Sox have won 2 World Series since 2004. The Cubs lost 6 straight playoffs game in 2008 and 2009 and then had back-to-back 90-loss seasons in 2010 and 2011. Do you really think the Red Sox are going to want to “pluck away” one of those great Cubs execs who put those teams together? Gimme a break, but I guess it was the “PC” thing for Cherington to say.
We’ll keep you posted as soon as we hear anything on the compensation issue today…