Red Sox, Cubs still talk compensation

Updated: November 15, 2011, 10:38 PM ET
By Bruce Levine | ESPNChicago.com

MILWAUKEE -- Having interviewed a number of the same people, the Chicago Cubs and Boston Red Sox have followed similar paths to fill their managerial vacancies. In spite of that fact, there's no agreement between the two sides about who gets first pick when it comes time to make a hire.

There had been some speculation that Boston would get the chance to complete the process first as part of the compensation package it is due for allowing Theo Epstein to forgo the final year of his contract to become Chicago's new president of baseball operations.

Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington put that speculation to rest on Tuesday.

"No," Cherington said when asked about Chicago deferring to Boston in the hiring process. "We will keep the manager issue separate. As I said before, the right person to be manager for the Red Sox is not necessarily the right person to be manager of the Cubs. They are different (organizations) with different challenges. We have talked to some of the same people. But that doesn't mean that the same guy is the right person for both jobs."

Both clubs will have conversations with Milwaukee hitting coach Dale Sveum in the next day or two. The Red Sox's interview with Sveum will be the second formal get together between the two sides. The Cubs' conversation with Sveum may be less formal.

"We haven't decided yet," owner John Henry said Tuesday when asked about the Red Sox's new manager, adding that the club was in no real hurry to make the decision.

When it comes to compensation, ESPN Boston reported both sides met Tuesday to discuss resolving the drawn-out negotiations. A trade between the two clubs could be one possible resolution.

"That's one possibility," Cherington said when asked if a trade was a viable option. "There's no secret that there's a bit of a disagreement between the two teams on what the compensation should be. Theo and I talked today. My hope is that we will talk tonight or in the next couple of days. I'm still optimistic we will find a resolution."

Epstein left his post as Red Sox's GM on Oct. 21, accepting a five-year $18.5 million contract to lead the Cubs' front office. The teams have been bickering for 25 days about proper compensation for Epstein. Major League Baseball has warned both organizations that if they don't soon reach a solution, the league will step in and make the decision for the teams.

Bruce Levine covers the Cubs for ESPNChicago.com and ESPN 1000. Information from ESPNBoston.com's Gordon Edes was used in this report.

Bruce Levine | email

Chicago baseball beat reporter
Bruce Levine has covered sports in Chicago for over 28 years and hosts "Talkin' Baseball," heard Saturday mornings on ESPN 1000.

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