It might be time for the Boston Red Sox and team president Larry Lucchino to go their separate ways.
Lucchino can't resist being a lawyer. Deny, deny, deny.
It was the type of statement that people automatically wanted to dismiss as Schilling drawing attention to himself.
In a statement that may eventually cost him his job, Lucchino denied that he was aware that Schilling had been asked to use PEDs.
“Certainly is something to look into, but it came from out of left field, to use a baseball cliche,” he said (via the Boston Globe's Peter Abraham).
Current Chicago Cubs general manager Jed Hoyer, who was the Sox's assistant general manager in 2008, calls it "preposterous" that Hoyer or former general manager Theo Epstein knew of Schilling's PED claim (via CBS Sports Chicago).
OK. So current Red Sox management and former Sox management denied the story—no surprise there.
But then a funny thing happened: MLB confirmed the story.
Per MLB.com's Evan Drellich, the Sox immediately brought Schilling's PED claim to the attention of MLB during 2008. MLB reportedly investigated the incident and considers it closed, according to Abraham.
Schilling states that he immediately brought his concerns to Terry Francona and Theo Epstein. But he then absolves Hoyer and Epstein from being involved in the comments, according to WEEI's Rob Bradford.
It is very hard to believe that Lucchino, who has his hands in every facet of the Red Sox's operations, was unaware of the incident from 2008. It is also hard to believe that Hoyer, Epstein's right-hand man, wasn't aware of the incident either—especially if Epstein knew.
This is the last thing that MLB or the Red Sox need right before a new season starts.
And MLB doesn't need another PED scandal on the heels of the Alex Rodriguez and Ryan Braun bombshells from the last couple of weeks. The fact that it might be a member of management like Lucchino covering something up makes this potentially far worse.
The Sox desperately need to put last season behind them and focus on the promise that comes with spring training.
Lucchino could have simply said that he couldn't comment on Schilling's story. Instead, Boston's ownership will have even more questions to answer in the coming weeks.