In retrospect, Dave Dombrowski's honeymoon period was very brief. Like, perhaps as little as 24 hours.
Last fall, on the morning of the Red Sox' World Series parade, principal owner John Henry stood on the Fenway Park lawn, and unprompted, volunteered that the Red Sox needed to get to work on an extension for their president of baseball operations.
At that moment, Dombrowski's stock had never been higher. Coming off two straight division titles, the team he had helped put together had just finished winning a franchise-record 108 regular-season wins before rolling over three 100-win teams in October to reach championship status.
Understandably, Henry didn't want Dombrowski going into the final year of his deal viewed as a lame-duck. But within hours -- perhaps even that same night -- it became obvious that an extension for Dombrowski was going to be highly problematic.
The problem? Money.
But not Dombrowski's -- though he had told several people in the game that he thought his next deal should lift him into the same financial neighborhood as both Andrew Friedman and Theo Epstein, both of whom were pulling down salaries of $7 million or greater, or roughly twice what Dombrowski was earning.
One major league source confirmed recently that the talks never got that far.