BOSTON -- A few things to know about Ben Cherington, who is an odds-on favorite to succeed Theo Epstein as Red Sox general manager if Epstein elects, as expected, to go to Chicago:
-- Cherington, 37, grew up in Meriden, N.H. (pop. 126). Played baseball at Lebanon High, graduated from Amherst College, and received his masters degree in sports management from UMass.
-- While still a baseball player at Amherst in 1997, Cherington was hired as an intern by Sox GM (and Amherst alum) Dan Duquette to work in the team’s scouting and player development department, and occasionally operated the radar gun at Sox games. Also interned with the Cleveland Indians in 1998, helping to run their video scouting system while working with GM John Hart, as well as Dan O’Dowd, Josh Byrnes and Neal Huntington, who all became GMs.
-- Hired by the Sox as an area scout in 1999, where his first territory was New Jersey, then five months later moved into the baseball operations department to coordinate the team’s advance scouting system, and a year later became coordinator of international scouting.
-- Was promoted to assistant director of player development in May 2002, and in December was named director by new GM Theo Epstein. He played a major role in authoring the thick organizational manual that spells out the “Red Sox Way” and is distributed to all players in the Sox minor-league system.
-- In the fall of 2005, after Epstein made his famous “Gorilla suit” departure from the Sox, Cherington and Jed Hoyer were named co-GMs. That promotion lasted only 2˝ months, as Epstein returned to assume GM duties.
-- Became vice president of player personnel in January 2006, overseeing amateur scouting and player development while consulting with Epstein on all major-league player acquisitions.
-- Promoted to his current position of senior vice president/assistant general manager on Jan. 12, 2009, a role in which he worked closely with Epstein on all major league personnel matters, including contract negotiations.
-- Cherington’s grandfather, Richard Eberhart, was a Pulitzer Prize-winning poet. His grandfather, Paul Cherington, was a transportation undersecretary for President Nixon. His second cousin is Susan Butcher, a multiple winner of the Iditarod dog-sled race.