This is the first in an occasional series of Sneak Peeks from Feeding the Monster. In the section below, which takes place on December 20, 2001, the Red Sox limited partners debate whether to sell the team to Cablevision head Charles Dolan or to the group led by John Henry and Tom Werner.
Finally, the partners were worried, as John Harrington had been, about wrapping up the process in time for the new Red Sox owners to be approved by baseball’s other owners at their annual meeting in mid-January. Any deals could put the deal on hold for another year. After going back and forth for about an hour, the partners agreed. While Dolan might ultimately be able to win approval, the uncertain economic outlook for the country meant that any snags in the sale could be disastrous, and since Dolan’s bid and Henry’s bid were identical, it wasn’t worth the risk. The partners chose the Henry-Werner group.
As the limited partners were meeting in Fenway, John Henry, Tom Werner, and Larry Lucchino were ensconced in a suite on the 29th floor of the swanky Sheraton in Boston’s Back Bay. All of them were exhausted. As Henry thought through all that had happened in the previous year, he felt a vague sense of vertigo. He’d gone from being convinced he’d be successful in his efforts to build a new ballpark in Miami to being told the Marlins would likely be contracted and he’d take over the Angels to thinking he would simply buy the Angels outright to this last-minute bid to buy the Red Sox. As the hours ticked by, Henry, Werner, and Lucchino restlessly waited for a phone call. Noon passed, then one o’clock. Werner began to grow concernedâ€šÃ„Â¶
What worried the limited partners about Charles Dolan’s bid? What else were they discussing that day in Fenway Park? The answers to these questions and many more exclusive details about the sale of the Red Sox are in Feeding the Monster, out July 11 from Simon & Schuster.