Red Sox mourn the loss of Gorman

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Red Sox mourn the loss of Gorman

The Red Sox' statement on the passing former general manager Lou Gorman:

The Boston Red Sox mourn the loss of Executive Consultant and former General Manager James Lou Gorman, who passed away earlier this morning. Lou, who courageously battled against a variety of health issues in the last year, died of congestive heart failure at the age of 82. The team extends its deepest sympathies to Lous beloved wife Mary Lou and extended family, as well as his legions of friends in baseball and beyond whose lives Lou touched.Lou Gorman was a legendary figure in the game of baseball, said Red Sox Principal Owner John W. Henry. Over the course of a career that spanned five decades, Lou helped to build winning teams across the sport, including the 1986 American League Champion Red Sox. Lou also served his country with honor and distinction, spending more than eight years of active service in the United States Navy. Above all else, Lou Gorman was a profoundly decent man who always had a kind word and an optimists perspective. His warm spirit and fundamental goodness will be greatly missed.Lou Gorman truly was a good man and a friend to all, Chairman Tom Werner said. A proud son of Rhode Island, he returned to his native New England in the mid-1980s and chartered the Red Sox baseball operations department. Lou promptly led the club to the AL Pennant and the 1986 World Series. But for those who had the good fortune to meet him, Lou will be remembered as much for his disposition and character as his baseball acumen. The Boston Red Sox and the rest of baseball will not be the same without Lou, but we are all better for having known him.Lou Gorman was first and foremost a gentleman: kind, warm, decent, and positive. He treated everyone with dignity and saw each person he encountered as a potential friend, said PresidentCEO Larry Lucchino. I will deeply miss sitting and watching Red Sox home games with Lou, learning from his wisdom and character. They just dont make them like Lou Gorman. That is not a clich; it is a historical fact.Lou Gorman was a giant in our industry, said Executive Vice PresidentGeneral Manager Theo Epstein. During half a century in the game, Lou impacted and helped so many people in countless ways. Well dearly miss this good, humble man who leaves an unmistakable legacy on the Red Sox and Major League Baseball.In addition to his active role as Executive Consultant to the Club, Lou had been serving as Coordinator of the Red Sox Hall of Fame, one of several Halls of Fame to which he belonged. A graduate of LaSalle Academy in Providence and Stonehill College in North Easton, MA, Lou was an outstanding studentathlete who also earned a Masters Degree in Education at Bridgewater State. Before his time with the Red Sox, he helped construct winning teams with the Orioles, Royals and Mets, in addition to launching the expansion Seattle Mariners. Lou Gorman leaves behind his loved ones and a baseball industry full of dear friends.

New photo surfaces of noticeably thinner Pablo Sandoval

New photo surfaces of noticeably thinner Pablo Sandoval

When it comes to Pablo Sandoval and his weight, a picture is worth a thousand words.

During spring training it wasn’t a good thing. Sandoval made headlines when a number of photos revealed significant weight gain for the Red Sox third baseman.

But the last two images have been more positive for Sandoval.

In October, a noticeably thinner Sandoval was photographed at an FC Barcelona game.

On Monday, Dan Roche of WBZ tweeted a more recent picture of the new-look Sandoval.

Sandoval, 30, is entering the third season of a five-year, $95 million contract. In his lone full season in Boston, 2015, Sandoval hit .245/.292/.366 with 10 homers and 47 RBI.

Red Sox taking stricter luxury tax penalties into consideration this offseason

Red Sox taking stricter luxury tax penalties into consideration this offseason

NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. -- The newly agreed upon Major League Baseball collective bargaining agreement features higher taxes and additional penalties for exceeding the competitive balance threshold -- and don't think the Red Sox haven't noticed.

The Red Sox went over the threshold in both 2015 and 2016, and should they do so again in 2017, they would face their highest tax rate yet at 50 percent. Additionally, there are provisions that could cost a team in such a situation to forfeit draft picks as well as a reduced pool of money to sign its picks.

None of which means that the Red Sox won't definitively stay under the $195 million threshold for the upcoming season. At the same time, however, it remains a consideration, acknowledged Red Sox president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski.

"You would always like to be under the CBT (competitive balance tax) if you could,'' offered Dombrowski. "And the reason why is that are penalties attached for going over, so nobody likes to (pay) penalties.

"However, the Red Sox, if you follow history, have been up-and-down, right around that number. We were over it last year and the year before that. So I would prefer (to be under in 2017). However, a little bit more driving force in that regard is that there are stricter penalties now attached to going over. And some of them involve, for the first time, differences in draft choices and sacrificing money to sign players and that type of thing. So there's a little bit more drive (to stay under).

"But I can't tell you where we're going to end up. Eventually, does it factor (in)? Yeah. But until we really get into the winter time and see where we are, will I make an unequivocal (statement about staying under the CBT)? Maybe we won't. But there are penalties that I would rather not be in position to incur.''

Dombrowski stressed that he's not under a "mandate'' from ownership to stay under the CBT.

"But I am under an awareness of the penalties,'' he said. "Last year, I would have preferred to be under, too, but it just worked for us to be above it, because we thought that would be the best way to win a championship at the time.''

He added: "I think we're going to have a good club either way.''

But it's clear that the CBT is part of the reason the Red Sox aren't being more aggressive toward some premium free agents such as first baseman/DH Edwin Encarnacion, who is said to be looking for at least a four-year deal at an annual average value of more than $20 million.

Currently, the Red Sox have nearly $150 million in guaranteed contracts for 2017, plus a handful of arbitration-eligible players, some of whom (Drew Pomeranz, Jackie Bradley Jr.) will see significant raises.

Together, with insurance premiums and others costs tallied, the Sox stand at nearly $180 million, just $15 million under the 2017 tax.

"I've said all along I've wanted to stay away from long-term contracts for hitters at this point,'' Dombrowski said of the current free agent class, "(especially) with some of the guys we have in our organization coming. I just haven't felt that that's a wise thing to do.''

The Sox saw two potential DHs come off the board over the weekend, with Carlos Beltran signing a one-year $16 million deal with Houston and Matt Holliday getting $13 million from the Yankees. Either could have filled the vacancy left by David Ortiz's retirement, but Dombrowski would also be taking on another another eight-figure salary, pushing the Sox well past the CBT.

"I figured we would wait to see what ends up taking place later on,'' said Dombrowski, "and see who's out there.''