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It may be hard to believe, what with the excitement of the last three days, but there remain a multitude of candidates for the Chicago Cubs’ open general manager position. And the rumors haven’t died down simply because Theo Epstein has stolen the limelight…

  • Tampa Bay Rays’ GM Andrew Friedman, whose team is on the brink of elimination in the ALDS, could still be interested in the Cubs’ job, says Gordon Wittenmyer. His source tells him that the Cubs’ job is, in fact, the only one outside of Tampa Bay that intrigues Friedman.
  • For his own part, Friedman isn’t interested in discussing the issue right now. ‘‘Right now, it’s almost embarrassing for the topic of conversation to be about me and not on our players, not on what we’ve accomplished over the last four years, even more specifically over the last month or the last two innings of Wednesday’s game,’’ Friedman said yesterday. ‘‘I understand it goes with the territory, and at the end of the season, when we’re done playing, it’s obviously something I’ll address. But right now, all of my focus is on this team.’’
  • Multiple sources are saying that Ricketts’ B-list of candidates, after Epstein, are Red Sox Assistant GM Ben Cherington, White Sox Assistant GM Rick Hahn, and Atlanta Braves Director of Professional Scouting John Coppolella. None of those three would be a surprising name, but it’s worth pointing out that all of the reports seem to find their origin in a Baltimore Sun article about the prospect of an open Orioles’ GM position. That Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun would have the access to divine Tom Ricketts’ short list, while no other local writer can do so, is suspicious. If I had to guess, I’d say Connolly was simply relating a distillation of the rumors that have travelled around for weeks (that he calls his source “an industry source” makes me even more circumspect that this is actually new information).
  • Paul Sullivan has a little more info on Coppolella, who is the least well-known of the candidates. Phil Rogers has a little more on Hahn.
  • Bruce Jenkins of the San Francisco Chronicle hears a stadium deal to save the Oakland A’s is not imminent, and, in that case, Billy Beane should consider many of the options before him. Ken Rosenthal wonders whether Beane might head South to Anaheim.
  • Dave

    Something I started writing then aborted due to a lack of creative energy was something comparing the various rumored GM candidates to things you’d find at a flea market. Billy Beane is compared to a pennyfarthing because he was once innovative but now there are more sophisticated options.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      I dig the creative connections, Dave.

      • Dave

        Thanks. I’m really thinking about quitting my job so I can stand at an off-ramp with a sign that reader, “Will compose clever analogy 4 food”

        • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

          How do you think I got this gig?

          • Dave

            Any advice on constructing a bindle?

            • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

              Keep liquids in the jar before you put it in the sack.

    • Buck

      Would Friedman then perhaps be a Shamwow? A relatively new, young, innovative product that works extremely well with minimal components, all at a low price. You following me, camera guy?

      • Buck

        Plus, as the coked-out, whore-beating spokesperson would tell you, “you know the Germans always make good stuff”.

        • Wilbur

          Germans are also good at organizing things and starting wars …

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        “You’re gonna love my nuts.”

        • NyN

          No way!!! Cashman is the “Slap Chop” for driving up the price on Carl Crawford and then having the nuts to tell everyone about it.

        • Nomar’s Left Glove

          Wait, then who is the ID Blocker stamp? Someone who is gimmicky and marginally useful for paranoid retirees. Also, they must be peddled by a Hispanic guy with a heavy accent and a keen sense of the obvious. Did Ozzie mention Hahn?

  • Deez

    I hope Friedman is the guy. He’s done “more w/ less” & they’ve done it in the American League East. That being said, I have to give a lot of props to Joe Maddon as well.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Keep in mind, the “more with less” argument cuts both ways – you say he’s done more with less (actually, the Red Sox have done more, but I get your point), I say he’s never proved that he can handle a big market, big-money team, which is what the Cubs will be.

      … but, hey, I wouldn’t complain about getting Friedman.

      • Cedlandrum

        Yep. MacPhail was that guy many moons ago in Minnesota.

      • Deez

        Rays regularly competes against 2 of the top organizations in Professional Sports,.
        They traded one of their Top 2 pitchers, make made no significant Free Agent signings, no moves at the Trading Deadline & made the playoffs.
        It’s easy to say they made it due to the Red Sox collapse, BUT the Rays had to win.
        Plus, their farm system is loaded w/ Talent that comes up & produces (Shields & Jennings).
        It’s hard to tell how much credit can be given to Friedman, but I think he’s the guy we need.

  • die hard

    Criteria for GM is someone who has guts to tell owner that owner is wrong when owner is wrong….so far I havent seen any names rumored fitting that bill

    • Dumpman

      Thats where my boy, Josh Byrnes, comes in. A lot of speculation about him getting axed because he wouldn’t fire his manager in Arizona. Thats a big reason why im behind Byrnes. Obviously a guy who stands behind what he believes.

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        I wonder if there’s any chance Byrnes would consider coming to work for Epstein in Chicago?

    • Rancelot

      What?!?! Any executive with confidence, and I would think that a GM with 2 championships (something that this franchise is craving) under his belt, aka Theo Epstein, would not hold back in said scenario. If it is a BASEBALL decision, who has more experience, Theo or Tom? Advantage Theo of course, and I’m sure that an astute business man such as Tom Ricketts would respect the advice. Now, if we are talking about the Hahn’s or Cherington’s of the world, your argument might hold true.

      Obviously you don’t think Theo would do this…please list someone in your opinion that would. Very interested in seeing this list of ballbusters.

  • JulioZuleta

    Rays down 4-2 in the seventh. Fly Friedman straight here from the game. Go Rangers, and Tigers

  • die hard

    Dick Tidrow would tell it like it is…hes old enough not to care what happens if so…Mr. Ricketts was burned by letting Hendry run show…fool me once shame on–you know the rest

    • TWC

      You’re killing me, die hard.  Again you name drop your nephew (or whatever) without one scintilla of evidence the Tidrow is either a) qualified, or 2) interested.  It’s fascinating.

      “Old enough not to care what happens”.  What does that even mean?  My grandfather is 92.  He doesn’t care what happens, but that’s because he doesn’t know what the hell is going on most of the time.  I’m certainly not considering that a qualification to run the Cubs.

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        Dick Tidrow is the new Chuck Norris.

        Dick Tidrow didn’t grow an amazing mustache. Thousands of little animals fought to the death to be the king of Dick Tidrow’s upper lip.

        • Wilbur

          Building on the Chuck Norris facial hair theme (it’s been a long day at the office), “There is no chin under Chuck Norris’ beard, just another fist.”

          or my personal favorite …

          “Chuck Norris can win a game of Connect Four in three moves.”

          • Nomar’s Left Glove

            Chuck Norris can slam a revolving door

  • Matt

    If the Rays and Yankees lose tonight, as all the candidates are available to speak to Ricketts, would you expect an announcement by the end of the week? On that same thought, Ricketts has probably already spoke to Epstein? The more time that passes after the Rays and Yankees are out of the playoffs, the less likely the chance that Epstein is the man for the job. Has anybody heard or read anything from Epstein’s Camp? I am wondering if Ricketts has spoken to him already?

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      I doubt anyone will be able to confirm the Epstein stuff for you. If both Rays and Yanks are eliminated tonight, I see little reason why the search would not be concluded within two weeks (I leave open next week because it could take several days to confirm that Epstein/Cashman/Friedman aren’t interested, and then some more time to line up the final candidate).

      • Matt

        Rays lose. One down, one to go. Let’s Go Tigers!

  • Nomar’s Left Glove

    The last week has been more interesting than the entire shit season. Sad

  • AbnerDoubleday

    Yes, Josh stood behind AJ in Arizona. Noble but misguided. Hinch may have been the worst manager — both strategically and in the clubhouse — in the majors in decades. That alone should eliminate Byrnes from any future GM job anywhere.

  • ty

    Abner is right. I lived in Phoenix during that debacle with Josh and his buddy. He is on probation forever for fear of repeating.

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