Red Sox chairman Tom Werner on Terry Francona's book: 'It's a good piece of fiction'

February 15, 2013 - 7:59 am
Red Sox chairman Tom Werner, in an interview with WEEI's Lou Merloni at spring training in Fort Myers, Fla., acknowledged he has read former manager Terry Francona's book and called it "fiction." "I read the book. Fortunately I didn't have to pay for it -- it was given to me," he said. "It's a good piece of fiction." One of Francona's criticisms was that Sox ownership at times appeared more concerned with ratings and finances than the product on the field, that acquiring a "sexy" player was important to appeal to a wider fan base. "That was silly. The only time I can remember ever talking about needing a sexy player was when I called Ben Cherington and told him to sign Vicente Padilla," Werner joked. "I don't know what else to say," Werner added. "There were so many things in that book that were fabricated. "But we accept the knocks -- a certain amount of the knocks that we received we are perfectly mature enough to handle. When you lose, it's a tough situation. But I would just say to our fans, we suffer. You know that. You know who we are and you know how important it is for us to get things back on a winning track." The owners also were portrayed as not having a true love for the game of baseball. "Well, it wasn't accurate," Werner said of that accusation. "I haven in my office a picture of me -- I'm a freshman in college, making a movie about Fenway Park. And that picture was taken 45 years ago. So, I just know how much I love the game. And really, we care so much about getting back to our winnings ways. That's what I'm focused on." Werner echoed previous statements from John Henry and Larry Lucchino that the owners have put profits back into the team in an effort to field a consistent winner. "The fact is, as John has said, every dollar that we have made, we have put into a competitive baseball team or Fenway Park or amateur signings or something that improves the club. We don't take any profits," Werner said. "And you think about what we've done in the community, and what we've done on the field and off the field. I'm not even defensive about it. Because I think the real fan knows how much we care about winning." Former Red Sox first baseman Adrian Gonzalez was quoted by USA Today this week as saying the players had good chemistry last year, but it was Red Sox management that was the problem. "I don't know, as you said, who he was referring to. But there's no doubt there was a disconnect last year," Werner said. "But that's behind us. I hope we don't have too many more Septembers like we had last September. "I will say '€¦ one of the things that I'm very pleased about last year was that we did make that trade. I think we were only four or five games under .500 when we made that trade -- obviously we ended the season quite poorly. But that trade really set us up for 2013 and beyond." Werner said the ownership group met with the team Friday morning and he is "quietly confident" about this season. "We addressed the team. We talked about our commitment to winning, that as an organization we are proud of having won 90-plus games for so many seasons," he said. "Last year was horrible, but we've gone through that door and I'm excited about 2013 and looking forward to playing baseball." To hear the interview, go to the Mut & Merloni audio on demand page. For more Red Sox news, visit the team page at