Lucchino: Angels' signings fuel rivalry

December, 8, 2011
12/08/11
1:47
PM ET
BOSTON -- Red Sox CEO Larry Lucchino, speaking at a function in Fenway Park announcing the team's plans to celebrate the ballpark's 100th anniversary, weighed in on the Angels' signing of Albert Pujols to a 10-year, $250 million contract.

“Every team has its own reasons for doing what it does,” Lucchino said. “Ten-year commitments are major commitments, and risks, but I’m sure the Angels had their reasons for doing what they’ve done. It just makes for an even keener rivalry between the Red Sox and the Angels.”

In Dallas, before departing from the baseball winter meetings, Red Sox GM Ben Cherington called the Angels' signings of Pujols and free-agent left-hander C.J. Wilson "aggressive moves.''

"They certainly are putting their front foot forward in the American League West and the American League in general,'' Cherington said. "There are a lot of good teams in the league. That will be a very competitive division, certainly with Texas and Anaheim going after each other, and there are certainly a bunch of teams that are in pretty good shape going into 2012 to compete in October.

"Big moves, and bringing Pujols into the American League, it will be fun to see him more,'' Cherington added.

The Red Sox, who have a first baseman, Adrian Gonzalez, beginning the first year of a seven-year, $154 million contract extension in 2012, were never in the Pujols derby.

"Not really,'' Cherington said. "I would have had to be pretty creative, given where we are. You can throw all sorts of things against the wall. You start to think about making huge fundamental changes to your roster to try to fit something in, and usually the end results are not really good."

Gordon Edes of ESPNBoston contributed to this story from Dallas.

Joe McDonald

Reporter, ESPNBoston.com

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