Lucchino (LL) from Thursday's 'Executive Report' on WEEI's Dennis
and Callahan Show with. John Dennis (JD) and Gerry Callahan (GC):
JD: Not sure if you've heard
program this morning...
but I've heard about Mannygate from producer, (JD: disrespect
for 9/11), oh I didn't see last night...
Not sure Manny was respectful enough last night...
JD: When they were bringing in the the military personnel
in last night, all Red Sox at top step paying respects, Manny in
dugout chewing tobacco, spitting, laughing, joking, ... not good
to see Manny on TV. Couldn't he at least pretend to stand
shoulder to shoulder with other teammates (and pay respect to
those that lost their lives for the country that made him set
LL: I can see why, strikes
me the wrong way. Not too much to ask for players to stand on
top step of dugout... I did not see the incident, put I will
follow-up on that
JD: During the
player introductions, they did it All-Star style, each player
accompanied by firefighter, etc., you walk out with him, side by
side, Damon is talking to his person, etc. Manny is out
there doing trunk twists, fixing batting glove, arm stretches,
and is a step and a half in front of guy!
he just Oblivious?
LL: ...I don't know
what to say... This is not what we expect from our players. I'm
disappointed and I will pursue this, I did not see it but Mike
Port was down there, I'll talk to Mike and well see what action
we will take.
GC: Did they play I got
high for Manny?...
LL: ugh.. ...cleared the air on that.
...But we did see some emotion last night after home run, so
he's in the game (now)...
you so frustrated by all this?
Yes, frustrated by the guaranteed contracts, look at player's
conduct, authority to players by PA, something in best interest
of game was 'an intrusion and privacy of players.' When
you start paying people $15-20M year, you lose control of them,
tendency when they make multiples of coaches and managers,
difficulties are inevitable in controlling.
GC: Now these guys put name on line, financially secure
forever, there's nothing you can do to me, nothing GL, MP, LL,
fans, media can do.
LL: Remember these
guys are competitors, some kind of control on reckless behavior,
wouldn't say completely loose canons. Will be a market
correction, fans will speak. Good things for game and fans, cost
of tickets, parking, had to go up tickets up... a 4,700% salary
increase since free agency cam in.
What was your reaction to his come-backer (back to dugout)?
LL: I'd never seen anything like it before, so it was
shock to me. My reaction was more muted than media. Act of
apologizing was something people might not have expected.
Initial reacton quite positive, something had to give a little
bit. Maybe something positive, wake up call for Manny. Different
JD: As unsettling as
that was (Manny), response of Grady who didn't look at him was
just as disturbing.
addressed, should have done something on spot. Has dealt with it
forthrightly, won't happen again. Earl Weaver "if you didn't
correct a player right there, on the spot, you're likely to get
same behavior again"... it's me to blame (he went extreme).
Guarantee he'll do that next time. No I didn't call his
hotel. You're right, instinct should be to run to first.
GC: Isn't it instinctive on the manager's part to get in
his face right away? How does manager even control himself and
think about it overnight?
LL: Yes, I
would think answer to that is yes. But it's happened over time
of GL's career... I don't know... not going to make excuses for
GL at this point... but Grady is Grady, he does make a point to
discipline in private, not in public like Weaver, not his style.
JD: Manny can do hard part, hitting a baseball. Easy part,
hustling, standing on top step of dugout.
LL: Let's not confuse style: casual, passiveness, not true
manifestation of his competitive nature, he wants to win... not
the 9/11 disrespect, but the other things.
"Hustle is the last refuge of the mediocre player" (told to LL
in hoops, by coach)
GC: Not many
reasons left to watch except Pedro, TC get another hit (ha)...
what would you say as to why we should watch?
LL: Watching for a finish to contrast with last year's
finish, see how they play every night, doesn't quit, cares, not
want to see a team mail it in. If these guys had pick up
basketball game, they'd care about it, they should here... I
like to see the wins, so I'm watching with great enthusiasm.
GC: Other than Freddy Sanchez, who do we want to see?
LL: Casey, mature right in front of our eyes. Benny
Agbayani, look at the contribution he's making. I uh..
Floyd, good point, a healthy Cliff Floyd and watching him
perform, that is great fun. And frankly seeing Manny put
up some big numbers in the batting race.
look for intensity, when I see Manny running to first base (when
was that?) haa during the grand slam, pointing, showing he's in
JD: But then you see Manny
standing in batter's box after HR only six rows in seats after
LL: He knew that ball was gone..
GC: Will you be watching
LL: ur uh.. we're watching
everyone... but watching how the team performs as I said, how
they play out rest of season with intensity and competitiveness.
JD: Hear now you're looking to incorporate Lansdowne
Street into the same type of play, a mall all around park?
LL: Whoa, whoa, someone approached me, told them not
focused on that... but Fenway need to expands horizontal...
don't know where that story came from...
Yawkey Way is great by the way... took my kid in batting
LL: Reaction of fans very
positive... media missed the boat on this... focused on liquor
license vs. fan friendly plaza...