If you think the Boston Red Sox are just laying in the weeds, waiting to spring that giant 10-year offer on free agent Mark Teixeira, you might want to read the comments owner John Henry (right) e-mailed to the Boston media yesterday.
Here's the report in the Boston Herald, in which Henry cites the global economic downturn as one of the reasons the Red Sox are unlikely to guarantee more than eight years to any player -- though he didn't specifically mention Teixeira.
"We're in a challenging economic environment," Henry wrote, "because we just don't know to what extent our long-term revenues will be hurt by the global financial crisis. A lot of businesses are in the same position. There will also be impact on player compensation, but no one at this point knows the degree."
Sounds to me like he is sending a message to agent Scott Boras that if he and Teixeira want a 10-year guarantee, they'll have to get it from the Nationals, who might be desperate enough after last year's 102-loss collapse to give Boras the decade-long deal he hasn't been able to pry out of the Red Sox, Angels or Orioles. I'm guessing Henry is not too worried that Tex will go that route.
This might be a very smooth move by the Sox, since Teixeira is believed to want to stay on the East Coast and they might be offering the only chance to jump on board a contending team. There are whispers about the Yankees getting more involved, but they introduced almost a quarter billion dollars worth of free-agent pitching (CC Sabathia and A.J. Burnett) at a news conference today ... and they already have a position player who makes nearly $30 million per year.
Don't know how this ultimately affects the Orioles, but it supports Andy MacPhail's contention in today's edition of The Baltimore Sun that they aren't entirely out of the picture yet.
Associated Press photo