It is impossible to know for sure whether the Red Sox want to hire Dave Dombrowski to be their new president or not. Unless someone goes out there and asks owner John Henry and he goes on the record one way or the other, we are likely going to be guessing about it until Dombrowski either joins Boston's team or signs on elsewhere. All we have for now are conflicting reports -- lots and lots of conflicting reports -- that suggest that the Sox want Dombrowski around. You know, unless they don't.
The Boston Globe's Nick Cafardo mentioned Dombrowski as a possible fit even before he was released from his contract, so he went in even harder on that angle following the release. ESPN's Gordon Edes is there to crush that thought, though, saying that Dombrowski is "not in the running" for the job in Boston, per a source. Another ESPN writer, Jerry Crasnick, hears that the Sox "could be in the mix" and that it's "worth watching", so, maybe there is something here? The Boston Herald's Michael Silverman reported that the Red Sox will be speaking to Dombrowski, but that his and Boston's styles might not match up, given his scouting leanings compared to the Sox' analytical ones.
Of course, Cherington himself is a scouting guy who has mixed numbers and scouting for years now, even before he took over as the general manager, so I'm not quite sold on that being a reason (or the reason) to avoid Dombrowski. If anything, it would help to have two slightly different heads of the baseball ops department, since they could complement and even challenge each other a bit on moves. Not in a butting heads kind of way -- Boston has reportedly played that game more than once in the past -- but in a manner that guarantees the Sox cover all possible angles before making major moves. More checks and balances than meddling.
Cherington is part of the solution, but needs help
On his own, Ben Cherington is capable of great successes and great failures alike. A guiding hand could help eliminate the worst of those failures.
The other stumbling blocks appear to be the Blue Jays, who have been searching for someone to fill their own president's chair for some time now -- most notably this past offseason, when they tried to pry Kenny Williams from the White Sox and Dan Duquette from the Orioles. The Angels also keep coming up as a possible destination, since they recently parted ways with general manager Jerry Dipoto and have Bill Stoneman working as their interim GM. If Dombrowski would rather work with the Jays, or is content to still be a general manager, then the Sox might not be a fit for reasons beyond their stances on scouting and statistics.
This is all hypothetical, though. What we do know is that Dombrowski used to work with Sox' owner John Henry on the Marlins. Dombrowski has a storied career as an executive with the Expos, Marlins, and Tigers, and while he's not perfect, neither is Boston's front office -- or any front office. Getting his mind in the mix would likely benefit the Sox, and bring them into the recent trend of teams who essentially have two general managers working together, one we've seen on the Cubs, the Dodgers, and Giants, among others. It would be a change from Larry Lucchino's time here, given he's a lawyer who knew how to run the business side of the organization, but maybe not the team on the field. For as promising as Boston's future is and how successful 2013 was, a change from that wouldn't be the worst thing.
Remember, the front office isn't as loaded as it used to be, even if it's still full of talent: Theo Epstein, Jed Hoyer, Josh Byrnes, Jason McLeod, and more have all departed in the last 10 years, and Cherington worked alongside each of them.
Getting rid of Cherington and the staff that has helped build one of the most intriguing collections of young talent in the game would be foolish. Adding to that staff, though, could make a difference in the future, and someone both more qualified and more available than Dombrowski is going to be difficult to find.