It is now official. The Chicago Cubs want to talk to Theo Epstein.
The news came earlier on Tuesday that Tom Ricketts, owner of the Cubs has requested permission from the Red Sox ownership to speak with Epstein about the vacant general manager’s position in Chicago.
Epstein hasn’t exactly denied the reports that he would be interested in going to Chicago to try and build a winning Cubs team that hasn’t won a World Series in over 100 years. But perhaps the question is do the Cubs want Epstein?
Well, the request to speak with Epstein is certainly a good indicator that the Cubs are interested, but according to Ricketts, Theo is one of many candidates.
In an interview on the FOX Business Network on Tuesday morning, Rickett’s confirmed just that.
“I don’t know; there’s a lot of good candidates out there. We’re going to talk to a handful of them and I’m sure we’ll come up with the right fit for the team. Ultimately it will be the decision of myself and my family. Obviously we didn’t get it done on the field this year. It was a disappointing season for everyone, but, we’re going to get some new leadership.” – Tom Ricketts on FOX Business Network.
Is Epstein that new leadership that Ricketts talks about? It certainly sounds like Epstein is in the mix to possibly join the Cubs, but with a year remaining on his contract the move would cost the Cubs a lot more than just money.
Some highly touted prospects might be just what the Red Sox need to replenish their depleted farm system. After all, it was the same Epstein who was responsible for shipping so many promising futures away to assemble what was supposed to be “the best team ever.” Only to see the team fall apart down the stretch, miss the playoffs for the second straight year and now have the blame game roaming all over the organization.
Epstein has been the most abused name when it comes to who the public feel should be blamed for the disapointing season, especially when manager Terry Francona was allowed to walk away from the club.
Epstein does get credit for drafting such cornerstone players such as Jacoby Ellsbury, Dustin Pedroia, Daniel Bard, Clay Buchholz and Jonathan Papelbon just to name a few. He also signed David Ortiz and traded for Dave Roberts, two impact players that led to the team’s first World Series title in over 86 years. But as of late, Epstein has failed to spend the Red Sox dollars properly.
The once pronounced “boy wonder” has signed some highly touted free agents that proved to be a complete bust. Names such as Julian Tavarez, David Wells, Edgar Renteria, J.D. Drew, Julio Lugo are just a few of the overpaid talents that never appeared to work in Boston. Add Carl Crawford as a possible name to that list, as Epstein signed Crawford to a ridiculous contract only to have the former all-star underperform to career low numbers.
Perhaps letting Epstein go to the windy city will turn out to be a blessing in disguise. The man who was repsonsible for helping this team build a winner, is also now the man to blame for one of the most epic collapses in all of baseball. He’s spending money and isn’t getting results and to Red Sox Nation that just won’t do.
Maybe it’s time for Epstein to move on and let this organization start over. The most recent turmoil has a firm grip on this organization and it’s going to take a long period of time to rebuild that polished image. A polished image that you can only see on a certain trophy awarded in October.
You can view the entire Ricketts interview below and once again, thanks to FOX Business Network for the footage.