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He believes he had potential World Series-winning clubs in 2008 and 2011 and regrets that both fell short, one in an outstanding American League Championship Series, the other in a spectacularly inexplicable collapse.
“When you don’t quite live up to that same standard in the standings, even for a brief period of time, those pressures get magnified, it gets harder to manage, and I think I personally — we didn’t do a good enough job of executing our baseball plan, even in a vacuum, towards the end,” Epstein said.
“And I didn’t do as good a job of managing that. Had we been completely true to our baseball philosophy that we set out and believed in and followed, we probably wouldn’t have made certain moves that we made anyway — moves that, as I look back on them, they were probably moves too much of convenience, of placating elements that shouldn’t have been important. Those were my mistakes.”
Out of respect to players still on the Red Sox, Epstein declined to single out any particular signings as mistakes. But it’s clear he regrets the five-year, $82.5 million deal right-hander John Lackey signed before the 2010 season, as well as the seven-year, $142 million deal bestowed on outfielder Carl Crawford a year later.
Herald: Theo's unhappy ending
It's pretty easy to point out the two big, awful contracts that the Sox are stuck dealing with but let's be honest: he wasn't the one who wanted either of those guys. Yeah he'll take the blame, but those signings came from Lucchino who loves the big name signings. He probably wasn't talking about just those two either.
I'm sure he is still incredibly upset at himself that he couldn't get a quality shortstop to come up through the farm system after Hanley Ramirez was shipped out of town. He tried to solve that issue by throwing $36 million to Julio Lugo and that was all sorts of awful. I don't think JD Drew is on the regret list because he had to overpay to get him into town and advanced stat guys always loved JD.
When Theo was using the term "bridge year", fans and media poked fun at it and were begging for big name signings so we can continue the unprecedented success this team had. We didn't want the ride to end and neither did the ownership. They big names arrived and not only has the ride ended, it crashed & burned.
How's that bridge year sound now?
Rest of the Links: Globe: Red Sox belt Marlins | Doubront has arrived | Sox seek settlement with Jenks | Herald: Doubront lifts Sox over Marlins | No easy answer for Youk's woes | Podsednik's a big help | Sox feed on bottom | CSNNE: Sox smash Marlins | Sox offense explodes against Marlins | Salty on Doubront: "The stuff he got is best in the league" | WEEI: Making sense of Youkilis situation | How success bred a monster: Theo Epstein considers Sox legacy | Podsednik thinks this might be the best Podsednik ever