John Henry Says ‘Chaos Is More External Than Internal,’ Expresses Confidence in Team


John Henry Says 'Chaos Is More External Than Internal,' Expresses Confidence in TeamRed Sox principal owner John Henry was driving around the Boston area on Friday afternoon, and he didn't like what he heard on the radio.

Coming out of his speakers were the voices of Michael Felger and Tony Massarotti from 98.5 The Sports Hub, both voicing their concerns and theories surrounding the Boston Red Sox. Henry decided to stop by the station for an hour-long interview.

"I think the chaos that's going on is much more external than internal," Henry said. "The Red Sox aren't in ashes. That's not how we feel about it."

Much of the early part of the discussion centered around The Boston Globe story this week that revealed problems within the clubhouse as well as personal information about former manager Terry Francona. Henry was adamant that he, Tom Werner and Larry Lucchino had nothing to do with the anonymous sources used in that story.

Henry also expressed the same disappointment as fans when it came to the Red Sox' 7-20 September record and failure to reach the postseason.

"It broke my heart to see this club fall apart at the end," Henry said. "We were devastated to lose that last game."

He also expressed equal confidence in the team turning it around next season and once again being a "top-class organization."

"People right now are forgetting that this was a great team before September and they're concentrating solely on Septepmber," Henry said. "I don't blame them for that — we're doing the same. But I love this team."

Regarding the collapse, Henry accused some of the media of misleading the public, as people tend to crave micro answers for macro problems.

"This was an organizational failure … but people don't want to talk about that," he said.

Given all the drama that's surrounded the club since the season abruptly ended — from Francona's departure to general manager Theo Epstein's reported departure to the rumors of clubhouse issues — Henry was asked what he could have done to prevent the September collapse.

"At this point, I don't know what I could have done differently," he said. "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.

"You redouble your efforts."

The discussion ranged on various topics, including the perception that Henry and the ownership group is no longer focused on the Red Sox due to other business interests — namely Roush Fenway Racing and Liverpool. Henry pointed out that there's a rather successful team a few miles down the road that hasn't been distracted by its soccer team.

When Felger told him that the Patriots haven't won a playoff game in several years, Henry quipped, "It must be the Revolution."

Regarding LeBron James' affiliation with Liverpool and FSG, Henry said he was aware of Boston fans' concerns.

"Yeah, I do understand that people think that if LeBron James is going to be involved with Liverpool that that looks bad for Boston," he said. "[But it doesn't], not really. Does it really affect the Celtics? I talked with [Celtics co-owner and CEO] Wyc [Grousbeck] about it. He didn't have an issue with it."

Henry could address reports of Epstein going to the Cubs, but he did say that Lucchino will remain with the team for several years. He did, however, express regret in seeing Francona and the likelihood that Epstein will be gone soon.

"Tom's and my role is to have the best management possible," he said of himself and Werner. "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."

The owner explained his belief that Epstein's departure from the organization was bound to happen at some point.

"[Theo] never saw the general manager's role as longer than 10 years for himself," he said. "Maybe he did early on, but after a few years, he knew that the stress of this job was too much.

"I would have loved for Theo to be our GM for the next 20 years," Henry also said. "I did everything I could personally to make that happen."

For more quotes from Henry, click here.

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