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Larry Lucchino reflects on 10 years since Red Sox’ trade for Alex Rodriguez fell through

12.24.13 at 10:11 am ET
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Red Sox president and CEO Larry Lucchino, in an interview with WEEI.com on Monday, looked back at the Red Sox‘ near-deal for then-Rangers shortstop and reigning American League MVP Alex Rodriguez in December 2003. The deal fell just over 10 years ago when the Players Association ruled that Rodriguez had sacrificed too much value in his deal while renegotiating his 10-year, $252 million deal in an effort to fit within the Sox’ budget.

“It was as vivid a reminder as one could have about the old cliche: The best trades are often the ones that never happen,” said Lucchino. “It was also a bit of a reminder of the power and influence of the Players Association. I can’t say how it would have influenced our operating practices going forward. It would be purely hypothetical. I’m not going to try. All I can say is we wanted to win, we were in it to win it, and we wanted to win it right then. We didn’t want a long period of time to pass. Having won three in 10 years, we feel a sense of satisfaction and pride in what has developed in place of an A-Rod-led Red Sox.”

The trade not only would have brought Rodriguez to Boston in exchange for outfielder Manny Ramirez and then-Single-A pitcher Jon Lester, but it also would have set in motion another move dealing Nomar Garciaparra to the White Sox for outfielder Magglio Ordonez (to replace Ramirez) and right-hander Brandon McCarthy. The implications for the Red Sox’ run of three championships in the past 10 seasons would have been considerable, encompassing not just those six principal players but also potentially such other notables as Edgar Renteria, Josh Beckett and Jacoby Ellsbury.

For a more thorough look at the near-deal and its aftermath, click here.

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