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Dave D'Onofrio's Sox Beat: The Granite State GM should take a bow
This is his team. This is built on his vision. This speedy renaissance is the product of his ability to execute the plan he laid out last fall by incorporating lessons learned during a rough rookie season in the GM role that he'd coveted growing up as a kid in Meriden, and had been groomed to assume. And, for those reasons, this is a team of which New Hampshire can be particularly proud.
"We tried to find guys that we felt were the right fit for the team in the roles we needed and the holes we had to fill - that fit the team, the park, the league, et cetera - and who wanted to be in Boston, that were attracted to being a part of this," Cherington said. "We just wanted guys who wanted to be here and especially who were attracted by the opportunity.
The GM himself thought all along that his team had a chance to compete. He saw parity across the AL East, and, after more than a decade in the organization, his intimate knowledge of its foundation and its farm system, he had hoped that they weren't as deeply buried as a 69-93 record on the heels of baseball's worst-ever September collapse might've made it seem.
"I think at the end of last year, as tough a year as it was, we all still felt very optimistic and confident about the future," he said. "We had a lot of good things in place, including a great ownership group, and players, and young talent in the system, and scouting, and all these things that you need to be successful. Of course, based on how painful a year it was last year, it was hard for people to see that - but we felt that then.
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