Red Sox CEO Larry Lucchino chuckled when asked what he thought of the rival New York Yankees spending nearly $500 million on new players this winter.

"It's like 'back to the future,' is my sense," he said. "I've seen this movie before.

"Anything that can be done that increases the intensity of the rivalry, as this certainly does, I think is positive -- as long as it doesn't go so far as to give them the advantage."

He said he and fellow Sox owners John W. Henry and Tom Werner are just as committed to winning as the Yankees, but not when it means "crazy expenditures that might be commonplace in New York."

Lucchino, who was at the Boston Baseball Writers dinner Thursday, was reminded that the last time the Yankees reloaded in similar big-dollar fashion, in the winter of 2008, signing CC Sabathia, A.J. Burnett and Mark Teixeira (a player highly coveted by the Sox), they won the World Series in 2009 after missing the playoffs the season before.

"Different players," he said. "I understand that. You can't just go into the grocery store and buy exactly what you need to win. A lot of other things go into it as well. Luck, injuries, and all of that. Suffice to say, we won't have any problem rekindling the rivalry with the Yankees.

"They're a different flavor of ice cream than anyone else in baseball. The Dodgers are now using that same game plan, I suppose, certainly more so than anyone else in baseball."

Lucchino has known Dodgers CEO Stan Kasten for years. He was asked in jest if he ever picks up the phone and asks Kasten what on earth he's doing.