John Henry: Boston Red Sox Open To Improving Team With In-Season Moves

MASHANTUCKET, Conn. — When the Boston Red Sox embark on their 2015 season, they’ll leave the door open a crack.

Red Sox principal owner John Henry indicated Friday he’s confident in the roster that general manager Ben Cherington and Co. have assembled this offseason. Henry also suggested the Sox could make in-season moves despite the club already soaring past the $189 million luxury tax threshold.

“Yes, we’ve consistently done that if we were competitive, as we’ve been in all but two years,” Henry said of adding pieces throughout the season. “We’ll be in the same place next year.”

The Red Sox have been active this offseason, both in free agency and the trade market. They signed Pablo Sandoval to a five-year, $95 million contract and Hanley Ramirez to a four-year, $88 million deal shortly before Thanksgiving. They then acquired three starting pitchers — Rick Porcello, Wade Miley and Justin Masterson — at last month’s Major League Baseball winter meetings.

It’s clear the Red Sox aren’t happy with how the 2014 season ended and thus are going all-out to return to prominence in 2015.

“I think it’s very strong,” Henry said of Boston’s revamped roster. “We are significantly over the competitive balance tax. I think for competitive balance purposes we’re over 200 (million dollars). The reason we’re over 200 is we’re building the team we wanted to build.”

While the Red Sox have been willing to spend money, they did lose out on pitcher Jon Lester, who signed a six-year, $155 million contract with the Chicago Cubs despite Boston’s aggressive pursuit. Henry said Friday he has no regrets with how the team approached the Lester situation. Things simply didn’t work out.

“I think we did everything that we could to sign him,” Henry said of Lester.

“I left (my final meeting with Lester in Atlanta) and went there thinking I and we are doing everything we can within reason that made sense, without going beyond a certain point, to convince him he should come back,” Henry added. “But it didn’t happen.”

The Red Sox, of course, are fighting an uphill battle given how poorly they played for much of last season. But there are plenty of new faces, and more could be added along the way.

It’s all about getting back to the top of the mountain.

NESN will air coverage of the Baseball Winter Weekend on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
NESN will air this year’s Red Sox Town Hall on Sunday at 7 p.m.

Thumbnail photo via Robert Deutsch/USA TODAY Sports Images

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