Sox came thisclose to blowing their cover

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- This was not quite the equivalent of a WikiLeak, but for the Red Sox it was about as close as they ever come to revealing company secrets.

When the Boston media contingent filed into the living room of Theo Epstein's hotel suite for their nightly briefing Wednesday -- the Red Sox general manager was still in an adjoining room -- a dry erase board was perched on an easel in a corner of the room. It was covered with names and numbers, presumably of the players the Sox had interest in acquiring, and what their contract status was. One of the notations, "CC," referred to Carl Crawford.

But before reporters could take advantage of this unexpected windfall, media relations director Pam Ganley quietly but quickly glided over to the board, took it down, and turned it so it was facing the wall.

So much for sharing. Moments later, Epstein entered the room and, when asked about Crawford, delivered the same answer he had the previous two days. "Anything can happen,'' he said.

And a few hours later, "anything" did -- Crawford came to terms on a seven-year, $142 million contract.