Red Sox owner John Henry believes team has relied too much on analytics
Since their 2013 World Series victory, the Boston Red Sox have posted two consecutive last-place finishes. Owner John Henry believes part of that reason is that they’ve relied too much on analytics.
Henry has overhauled the front office over the last several months after another disappointing season, and one of his directives going forward is more scouting and less analytics.
“I spent at least two months looking under the hood, and I came to the conclusion we needed to make some changes,” Henry told Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe, via Mike Axisa of Eye on Baseball. “One of the things we’ve done — and I’m fully accountable for this — is we have perhaps overly relied on numbers, and there were a whole host of things.
“We have a very hands-on president of baseball operations [Dave Dombrowski] and a general manager [Mike Hazen] who worked extremely well together. We have made significant changes. The biggest thing is players on the field have to perform. Perhaps there was too much reliance on past performance and trying to project future performance. That obviously hasn’t worked in three of the last four years.”
Under Theo Epstein, the Red Sox were at the forefront of the analytics revolution, and their ability to utilize undervalued assets was vital to their 2004 and 2007 World Series titles. In 2013, they again gave short-term contracts to veterans who played huge roles in winning a championship. Since then, they invested heavily in guys with known effort issues and weight struggles. They got away from what made them successful in the first place. That, not some overreliance on analytics, is what has led to their issues over the past two seasons.