November 11, 2013 - Charlotte, N.C. and New York: Sporting News, the iconic sports media brand that is also a top ten digital media property (comScore), today announced Boston Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington is Sporting News' Executive of the Year as voted on by a panel of 31 major league executives within SN's 2013 MLB Awards, which have been awarded since 1936.
Cherington, 39, was presented with the award Monday night at the league's annual general managers meetings in Orlando, Fla. Voting for the honor concluded before the start of the postseason.
Starting late in the 2012 season, Cherington pulled off a series of moves that turned a last-place team into the 2013 World Series champs, including:
• In August 2012, Cherington traded three of the team's biggest contracts - Josh Beckett, Adrian Gonzalez and Carl Crawford - to the Los Angeles Dodgers, saving about $261.7 million.
• After the season, he fired controversial manager Bobby Valentine and hired Toronto Blue Jays manager John Farrell - a former Sox pitching coach - to replace him. Players credited Farrell with bringing calm to the clubhouse after a year of the tumultuous Valentine. He was named AL Sporting News Manager of the Year by his fellow skippers.
• During last offseason, he opted against making a big splash in the free agent market, instead signing mid-market players like Mike Napoli, Stephen Drew, Shane Victorino and Koji Uehara. All played key roles in the team's success this season.
As a result of these moves, the Red Sox went from fifth in the league in runs scored in 2012 (734) to first this season (853). Their earned runs allowed decreased from 754 to 613.
"Ben Cherington deserves all the credit in the world for what he has done for this roster," Farrell told the Associated Press. "To come in and see the energy and the commitment that the (players) had, the buying into a team concept every single day, and the one thing that really stands out more than anything is just their overall will to win. And that was no more evident than in this entire postseason."
Cherington is just the third Red Sox executive to win SN's Executive of the Year award, following Tom Yawkey (1946) and Dick O'Connell (1967 and 1975).
1. Ben Cherington, general manager, Boston Red Sox: 15 votes
2. Neal Huntington, general manager, Pittsburgh Pirates: 9 votes
3. Dayton Moore, general manager, Kansas City Royals: 4 votes
4. Frank Wren, general manager, Atlanta Braves: 3 votes