Henry: Money won't be an issue at trade deadline

Henry: Money won't be an issue at trade deadline
July 8, 2013, 10:15 am
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ANAHEIM, Calif. -- If the Red Sox are in the market for help at the July 31 trade deadline, payroll limitations won't stand in the way, principal owner John Henry said Sunday.
     
"I can't see it being an issue," said Henry, in attendance at Angel Stadium as the Red Sox and Los Angeles Angeles of Anaheim completed their three-game series Sunday. "I suppose there might be some (larger) salaries that we couldn't take on, but it just doesn't come up as an issue."
     
The Red Sox began the year with a payroll of about $154 million, reduced in part because of their unloading of salaries in their mega-deal with the Los Angeles Dodgers last August.
     
"We don't have issues because we got under the (luxury tax threshold) last year," said Henry. "So we don't have an issue going over because that's only when you go over two years in a row (when significant penalties kick in)."
     
As he looked out at the Red Sox preparing for the series finale, Henry added: "I'll tell you what is an issue: Do you really want to change this team that much?"
     
Reminded that the team could undoubtedly use some bullpen reinforcements, particularly after lefty Andrew Miller was lost to the DL, Henry noted that the team might have some answers at Triple A Pawtucket.
     
(In recent weeks, the Red Sox have had some internal discussions about converting Brandon Workman and Anthony Renaudo to relief in an effort to bolster the major league bullpen.)
     
Henry also addressed other topics:
     
* On the team's strong first-half play: "It's been very satisfying. I think it points toward one thing: Everybody thought we would be last this year, as if last year -- which happens in all sports -- was, 'Oh, this is the new norm. The Red Sox used to be good and now they're over that phase and in a new phase.'
     
"But it's clear it was an anomalous year, not this year. People are acting like this is an anomalous year; to me, last year was. Last year was an anomalous year, to be that bad. We're back to where we were in 2011."
     
* On first-year manager John Farrell: "He's done a great job, his staff's done a great job. Every one of these guys (pointing to players in the dugout) has done a great job. They all take turns stepping up."
     
* On the team's character and personality, which some have compared to past successful Red Sox squads: "It reminds you a little bit of past teams. The 2004 team was a different team. It's a different vibe than any other team, but there was a certain camaraderie that year, which is more than you would hope for."
     
Henry contended that having a loose, fun-loving bunch -- as this year's team would seem to be -- is a benefit when playing in a pressurized environment like Boston.
     
"It doesn't hurt," he said, chuckling. "Especially in this market. (It's good) to feel that everyone has your back. It's important in that way."
     
* On the way fans have begun to embrace the Red Sox again:
     
"I think that the players and the organization got so beaten up by . . . that has an impact," he said. "You finish last, you're going to get beaten up. I think it's obvious (that the fans like this year's team)."
     
* On improving attendance after the sell-out streak ended in April.
     
"Kids are out of school, the weather's been great," he said. "Until the sellout streak (began), it was always tough, as you remember, to sell tickets in April and September when the weather (isn't as good). People are in school and we had a lot of (home) games in April this year."