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Red Sox Denying Cubs Permission To Interview Lovullo

The spat over Theo Epstein leaving Boston for Chicago continues as the Red Sox are denying their bench coach an opportunity to interview for the Cubs managerial job.

Leon Halip

Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports is reporting that the Cubs have been denied the opportunity to interview Torey Lovullo by the Red Sox. The Red Sox position is that the agreement that allowed Cubs team president Theo Epstein to leave Boston for Chicago forbids the Cubs from hiring Red Sox employees.

As far as I understand, that deal was meant to refer to front office and scouting personnel, but it looks like from the letter of the agreement the Red Sox are within their rights. However, as Jon Heyman notes, Lovullo was not working for the Red Sox when Epstein left, so the spirit of the rule, which was to prevent Epstein from taking his "team" to Chicago with him, is being violated.

It's a petty act by a team to deny one of their coaches a chance to get his first managerial job. Unless the Commissioner's Office intervenes or the Red Sox change their mind, and I doubt either will happen, I don't think there is anything the Cubs can do about it. The other thing the Cubs could do is send compensation, but with lots of good candidates out there, it seems silly to hire the one that would cost the team a player.

All of this is very unlikely to make Lovullo a happy employee though.

The Cubs plan on hiring a new manager sometime this week. Without Lovullo, the favorite seems to revert to Padres bench coach Rick Renteria, whom the Padres have no issue with him following Jed Hoyer to Chicago, In fact, the Padres have been far more classy about all of this than the World Champions.

Of course, there are other candidates that are still in the mix, and I'm sure you all have your favorites.