John Henry Appears on 98.5 The Sports Hub’s ‘Felger and Massarotti’ to Discuss Terry Francona, Red Sox Rumors (Audio)

John Henry Appears on 98.5 The Sports Hub's 'Felger and Massarotti' to Discuss Terry Francona, Red Sox Rumors (Audio) Red Sox principal owner John Henry appeared on 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Felger and Massarotti afternoon show on Friday.

Henry discussed such rumors as smearing Terry Francona on his way out of Boston, as well as other topics.

You can read a full story here. The full interview is also available on 98.5’s audio player.

John Henry’s highlighted quotes are below:

  • “I think the chaos that’s going on is much more external than internal. The Red Sox aren’t in ashes. That’s not how we feel about it.”
  • “I would have loved for Theo Epstein to be our GM for the next 20 years. … I did everything I could personally to make that happen.”
  • “[Josh Beckett] is one of the most competitive guys I’ve ever met.”
  • “We had a bad start and a bad end. We have to make sure that when we start next year, we’re ready and we don’t get off to a 2-10 start.”
  • “I didn’t see what you apparently saw which was players not trying to win games.”
  • “The starting pitching failed.”
  • “[Jason Varitek] was doing everything in his power to win and doing everything he could to help Jarrod Saltalamacchia to be the best catcher he could be.”
  • “Ownership doesn’t make the call on players. We get involved when there are financial issues. If there’s a long-term financial contract, we have to approve that.”
  • “So was there a leadership issue? That’s something I’m talking with players with at this point.”
  • On Varitek: “I’ve seen how maligned Jason has been. He’s been a tremendous leader for this club since before I arrived here.”
  • “This was an organizational failure … but people don’t want to talk about that.”
  • On major free-agent signings: “I think free agency in general is difficult. I don’t think it’s just us.”
  • “The problem with free agency is you’re buying players usually at the age of 30 or above. You know players peak at about that time, so it’s fraught with peril.”
  • “We can really make some money if we didn’t [sign free agents], but we try to do everything we can to win.”
  • “We do have to do better in free agency. It’s not easy to do.”
  • On 98.5 The Sports Hub’s ratings: “It’s because you’re entertaining rather than staying with the dry truth.”
  • “You can’t base free-agent signings or amateur signing purely on statistics or purely on scouting. You have to use all of your tools. I think, again, some of this is because you’re buying players past their prime in free agency. And you can either pass them or you can not pass them up. And you’re right, we haven’t done the best job, and we have to work on that.”
  • Larry Lucchino runs the Red Sox. Tom and I do not on a daily basis. … We wouldn’t need Larry and Larry wouldn’t be here if we ran the Red Sox. We have one of the best CEOs in sports. We’ve never run the Red Sox. We don’t run Liverpool.”
  • “Larry hasn’t set a time or a date. Theo sort of did with us at one point. He never saw the general manager’s role as longer than 10 years for himself. Maybe he did early on, but after a few years, he knew that the stress of this job was too much. But in Larry’s case, he thrives on it.”
  • “Tom and my role is to have the best management possible. … We’ve had great management. Tito and Theo brought two World Series here. Arguably the best general manager in my mind and the best manager, and it’s just really a sad day to see them both leaving.”
  • “I’m ultimately responsible for every thing that goes on there… But I don’t apologize for the misinformation that’s going on.”
  • On his business relationship with LeBron James: “I do understand that people think that if LeBron James is going to be involved with Liverpool that that looks bad for Boston.”
  • “Does it really affect the Celtics? I talked with [Celtics co-owner] Wyc [Grousbeck] about it. He didn’t have an issue with it.”
  • “It’s about creating a perception that you guys [the media] can run with that says ‘Oh, they’re in bed with the enemy.'”
  • On if the Patriots made a deal with A-Rod: “I would feel like I need to go down there and have a talk with them because they’re going into the wrong business.”
  • “What could I have done differently? I could have probably thrown a few innings … I shouldn’t be facetious. … At this point, I don’t know what I could have done differently. On Sept. 1, we thought we were headed for the playoffs, headed for a hundred wins. Now looking back after the collapse, what I have to do going forward is ensure that something like this doesn’t happen again.”
  • “If Theo leaves, we have someone to replace him. If something happens to me, we have someone to replace me.”
  • “Tom and Larry and I, Tom and I essentially run Fenway Sports Group. … So if something happens to me, that doesn’t mean that things are going to change.”
  • On how long he’ll own the Red Sox: “As long as I can. I love this. I particularly love the banter back and forth with you guys. Why would I give this up?”
  • “It broke my heart to see this club fall apart at the end. … We were devastated to lose that last game.”
  • “If the fans hang in there, I’m gonna hang in there. … We’re gonna be back as a top-class organization.”
  • “People right now are forgetting that this was a great team before September and they’re concentrating solely on September. I don’t blame them for that — we’re doing the same. But I love this team.”

Listen to the full interview below.

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