Quantcast

The Yankees were eliminated by the Tigers in the ALDS last night, so that means Tom Ricketts can now reach out to – theoretically – all of his top candidates for the Cubs’ open GM position. While we await some more definitive word on the Cubs’ request to interview Theo Epstein, it’s worth noting that Cashman is a “free agent,” unlike Epstein, on whom the Red Sox hold a 2012 option (exercizable tomorrow, incidentally). Even if Epstein remains the top choice, you can be certain the Cubs are making calls to other candidates, in the event Epstein doesn’t happen.

  • CJ Wilson, who will face Justin Verlander this weekend in a hell of great ALCS Game One matchup, may be the top free agent pitcher on the market this Winter. Knowing that the Cubs are expected to be looking for pitching, Wilson was asked whether he’d consider coming to Chicago. His response wasn’t exactly positive. Could he see himself wearing a Cubs’ jersey at Wrigley Field? “I’ve never even been there,” he said flatly. So how will he evaluate a team’s offer? ‘‘Gun laws, day games, weather, competitiveness, freedom to be myself.” When asked if that was three strikes against the Cubs, he said, “I’m just saying, that’s how I decide.” Ok. It’s still early, but, he may not be an option even if the Cubs want him.
  • Carrie Muskat is pretty bold in an assertion that Aramis Ramirez will not be back with the Cubs next year: “Re-signing Ramirez doesn’t seem to be an option unless no other team makes him an offer.”
  • Josh Vitters, Junior Lake, and DJ LeMahieu saw action yesterday in the AFL, with Vitters going 0-4, LeMahieu 1-4, and Lake 3-4 with a double and a homer. Chris Carpenter pitched a couple innings of relief, and reportedly saw his fastball touch 100 (the same was true last Fall, for what it’s worth). Andrew Cashner is expected to pitch today.
  • There has been a minor delay in the final vote approving Mesa’s participation with the Cubs on the team’s new Spring Training facilities. No one seems to think it’s anything more than a procedural issue, and, thus, no one is concerned.
  • Some random Cardinals fans discuss the future of Albert Pujols.
  • I had a GM search bullets posts percolating for today, but, with the Epstein talk reaching a fever pitch, it would have seemed incredibly tone deaf for me to be throwing up the “latest Billy Beane rumor.” I’ll keep it in the can, depending on what happens today and this weekend. The same is true of the Meet the Candidates series – I still have many to go, but, again, it would make me look like a dunce if I were previewing Thad Levine on the day the Cubs are on the verge of hiring Theo Epstein (I’m not saying they are, I just didn’t want a post like that to be on top if/when such an announcement comes down. You dig?).
  • funkster

    Gun laws? Wow.

    • Mike Foster

      Funk, ya gotta live in the South to fully appreciate what a real gun culture it is. Wilson is playing in Texas. I’m not saying it’s a bad thing, it’s just the local culture. In Iowa we wouldn’t think of keeping a loaded gun in the house. Here, the locals wouldn’t think of NOT keeping the guns loaded. I asked why, here’s what I got back “is the intruder going to wait for me to load so I can shoot him?” Not kidding.

      • Matt

        That’s stereotyping there… i wouldn’t move to chicago because of the gun laws, that doesn’t make me unintelligent.

    • hardtop

      yeah, i have no desire to “fully appreciate” gun culture ( which is an oxymoron)
      Enjoy the rich sophistication of Texas culture, Senor Wilson.
      hope dat boy dont blow his dang foot off down there in teh-has—sheeit.

      *edited slightly to avoid a potential discussion with a texan

  • Trent

    Screw CJ Wilson. He’s going to be overvalued in free agency this off season due to lack of quality pitchers hitting the market. Let some other team overpay him.

    • http://Bleachernation Bric

      That’s about as simple and true as it gets (something the Cubs haven’t exactly practiced in trades and FA the last couple of years). The first prerequisite the new GM should have is common sense.

  • EQ76

    eh.. Wilson’s just deflecting the question that he shouldn’t have been asked in the first place.  I wouldn’t take any of that seriously.  Who in their right mind (other than Prince Fielder) would actually give an honest answer about next year’s team they could play for when they’re in the middle of the playoffs?

  • RY

    Kelly Shoppach sure made CJ his bitch in game 1, not really sure the money is right for CJ, i agree with Trent, highly overvalued

  • Wilbur

    Hadn’t really thought about it, but was Rickett’s willingness to let Hendry stay through this season in part a function of the individuals he really wanted to replace Hendry would not have been available before this fall? They being Theo (getting down to one year on his contract) and Cashman (who’s contract is expiring).

    I certainly don’t think it was the only or even the primary reason, but if Ricketts was wavering on keeping Hendry at all, it’s a great rationalization he could make to himself for not acting. Not making a personnel change is always easier than making one whether you own a baseball team, a paint store or supervise an office.

  • die hard

    no more free agents please!!…invest in farm and play with own crop of kids….build up loyalty which will be reciprocated…once a Cub always a Cub…no outsiders anymore…they dont bleed Cubby blue…Look at the Dodgers of old….learned to play the Dodger way…

  • Jason

    I would say that it had more to do with the fact that TR wanted to give Hendry one last chance to right the ship. He has a very methodical nature to him and as a result, he doesn’t make quick decisions.

  • CubFan Paul

    huh ..Muskat reports that LeMahieu is learning First Base as well as the Outfield ..bye bye Blake Dewitt who is arbitration eligible for the first time (not worth an estimated $1.2mil for 2012 *MLBTR* on a rebuilding team when someone younger can do it better)

    So, if LeMahieu doesn’t win the job at 3rd Base the plan appears to be low cost super utility guy. i like it

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Vitters is learning first base and outfield, not LeMahieu.

    • http://cubbiescrib.com Luke

      Reread that Muskat quote. It’s Vitters who is learning first as well as the outfield… but primarily first. Vitters may well be the full time first baseman for Iowa next season.

      LeMahieu could probably handle either, but it looks like the Cubs are keeping him at third and second. Long term he might be best as a super-sub, but I suspect he’ll get every chance to win the majority of the starts at third in spring training.

      Through three AFL games, Vitters has 3 starts at first. LeMahieu has 2 starts at third and one as DH.

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        Beat you. :)

  • Jim Kress

    diehard and Paul, you cant be completely happy with nothing but our own home grown talent, could you? Yes i really wanna see 5 all stars who all came up through the cubs farm system as much as anyone. But for starters LeMahieu doesn’t have the power for a 3rd baseman, and frankly, our team won’t have any power at all unless we go after Prince, or Votto, or Pujols. You’ve gotta have SOME outside talent, experience, and veteran know-how in order to help the kids get going. Fielder is a great clubhouse guy and would be in a way an unintentional “PR boost” for the cubs. He’s got some showmanship that the cameras love (but its not over the line) also, the guy is the HR Derby Captain who likes to pick his own players. Sure would be nice if we saw 2 cubs players at the HRDerby. It would def bring some attention to the cubs….. make ppl wanna play for them. I’m all for having a great farm system…but you’ve gotta put in some outside veterans to piece the puzzle together.

    • CubFan Paul

      lumped in with die hard…wow, but i wasn’t the delusional one ranting on about letting the kids play, nor have i ever ..and Fielder, by all reports is NOT a good Clubhouse guy, he’s a loner/private guy

      • TWC

        Yeah, but wouldja shut up about Dick Tidrow already, Pauly?!

      • Jim Kress

        He’s totally a good clubhouse guy. By every account in which I’ve seen, he is one of the Brewers leaders. I don’t see Braun as the type of guy who bands everyone together to do a team synchronized walkoff HR celebration. That was all Fielder! And I’m new on here, but I get the feeling diehard isn’t very well liked haha. Another good topic with Fielder is that he (obviously) now has playoff experience….something else to pass on to the experienceless kids.
        Honestly I see mostly positives with Fielder. He’s young, great hitter, plays hard, lefty, (I think) good clubhouse guy. Only big negative I see with him other then his defense is how much it’ll cost the Cubs. But lets be honest, its not our money so who gives a damn.

        • hardtop

          Jim, its been discussed, but you’re new, so ill recap ;)
          prince is hated by his teammates because he eats all the sunflower seeds in the dugout (even the ranch flavored ones) AND he cleans out the in-flight meals cart before the rest of the guys even get to their seats. he’s a big meanie.

          *i like you how slid the defense thing in there.. as if it doesn’t matter for 25 mil/yr.

          • Jim Kress

            It matters, there’s no question about that, but look where the Brewers are right now… you surround him with other capable defensive players, then things wont look so bad. And its not like he’s the worst defender ever. He plays in the majors doesn’t he? He has decent range and I’ve seen him make some nice picks over at first also. I mean its not like he’s alfonso soriano playing left field. p.s. still hate Hendry for that move………WHAT WAS HE THINKING?!?!?! I digress…

  • Jay

    Gun laws … that’s just silly.

  • Edwin

    I believe all the Cubs need to do to get CJ Wilson is to send lawyers, guns, and money. Next issue please.

    • Internet Random

      … the shit has hit the fan.

  • Jason

    I would love to see a roster of 25 homegrown prospects capable of winning 90+ games perennially but I think the likelihood of that happening is remote. Some prospects just arent going to develop the way you thought so you have to go out and find FAs to fill those gaps.

    But I could care less about big name FAs – I want wins. And star players who are FAs are typically overpriced. And sorry but I don’t want Prince Fielder either. The price for him will be too high.

  • die hard

    Fielder went Zambrano on one of his teammates in dugout on national tv several yrs ago…role model?….Ricketts’ man crush on Theo not going to end well for Cubs fans….

    • Jim Kress

      Several years ago…you’re hanging on to something from several years ago?? Kobe Bryant raped a girl several years ago. The Cubs were in the playoffs several years ago. Soriano was a 30/30 threat several years ago. People and teams change. Several years ago Fielder was 21, 22 or 23, correct? Can you honestly say you’ve never done anything you regret or wish you wouldn’t have when you were 21-23. I know plenty of things I wish I could take back (the uggo while I was drunk being one of them).
      As far as TR with a man crush goes….well that’s just inaccurate. TR has said and done nothing aside from asking for a formal talk with him. Business as usual. We may all have crushes on Theo, but that’s because we know what he could mean for this organization. TR will also be interviewing Friedman and Cashman. I have no doubt in that.

  • Steve

    While I’m not a fan of the Cubs signing CJ Wilson, it royally pisses me off that Governor Quinn’s political agenda is now affecting the Cubs ability to sign free agents. Reason number 999,999,999,999,999 I will never vote for him. Thanks, Bret, for allowing me to get on my soap box.

    • JulioZuleta

      Brett for Governor

      • TWC

        of … Ohio?

    • Matt

      Isn’t it about time for Quinn to be in handcuffs?

      • hardtop

        why? does he have an illegal firearm?

        • JulioZuleta

          Probly not, I think his issue would be that he can’t carry a concealed weapon. Which is legal in I believe 48 or 49 states now.

          • Steve

            49, and yes, one is the lonliest number.

  • Jim Kress

    side note….Brett is there an app for BN? I don’t have an iPhone (unfortunately). I have a Droid. Just wondering if there was a Google friendly app so I can get this info on the fly.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Sorry, Jim – at present, no app. It’s on the list of tasks, but, I can’t really put a time-table on it. One of the drawbacks of a one-man show, I’m afraid. Sorry about that.

      • Dave

        One word: intern

        Find some student-chump to do all the technical work, dont pay them then get rid of them when they’re no longer necessary.

      • Andrew

        Not that I’ve ever written an app, but one thing I understand about apps is that once you’re able to write an app for iPhone or Droid, writing the other is a piece of cake.

        Just food for thought.

        Man, I need some cake.

      • Jim Kress

        For minor compensation, I really wouldn’t mind trying to help…..Just a thought for you haha

        • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

          Thanks, Jim. I will keep that in mind. And, when I scrape $3 together, I’ll shoot you an email. :)

          • Jim Kress

            Yay! to be honest, its better income then I have currently haha
            So much for this college degree I carry around with me…..

  • die hard

    while Ricketts fiddling over Theo, the Cub fiefdom is burning……why not Frank Wren of Atlanta..good credentials….solid baseball guy who actually played baseball for a living

    • http://www.michigangoat.blogspot.com MichiganGoat

      Why not Chuck Norris: He doesn’t trade players he trades lives. He doesn’t sign contracts he signs death certificates. He doesn’t signs free agents, he frees agents of their lives.

      Seriously are we just throwing darts at organizational charts.

      • Rancelot

        Brilliant…just did a spit take on my laptop!

      • TWC

        Nope.  Just trolling.

        • JulioZuleta

          That’d kinda like a white sox fan saying, hey, while we’re waiting on legitimate candidates like Dave Martinez and Sandy Alomar, why not take a chance on Robin Ventura.

        • http://www.michigangoat.blogspot.com MichiganGoat

          Chuck Norris doesn’t troll he rolls over one life at a time.

      • hardtop

        ha, death certificates…

      • http://www.michigangoat.blogspot.com MichiganGoat

        Chuck Norris doesn’t hit home runs, the other team runs home crying. He is the man that gave ego his problem.

  • die hard

    Ricketts could end this nonsense right now and name Randy Bush as GM…very capable…no ego problems…oh and by the way, didnt he play the game at the major league level for a living?….

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Randy Bush didn’t need a bat. He could roundhouse kick the ball out of the ballpark.

    • hardtop

      randy bush? that is an awesome porn star name. does he have the porn star stache to match? i have a feeling the lip salad goes a long way toward giving someone baseball cred in your world, die hard.

      anyway, i don’t want this chick running the cubs
      http://www.covershut.com/covers/Randy-Bush—I-Love-To-Love-Front-Cover-17740.jpg

      • Joe Cartwright

        Nicely done

    • Joe Cartwright

      What happened to Dick Tidrow?

      • http://www.michigangoat.blogspot.com MichiganGoat

        Chuck Norris made Dick shrivel.

        • Jeff

          …………..

        • CubFan Paul

          wow

  • Matt

    2 hours and 21 minutes until the sunsets on the East Coast and still no news. The suspense is killing me.

  • Vinestal

    I love how Jon Heyman lives in a world of his own and is saying bizarre things on twitter about how unless things change Epstein stays with the Redsox, I guess he doesn’t read well or something.

    • King

      Its a total hedge. You can’t be wrong when you say something like that. He may as well have tweeted, “I hear Theo Epstein will either be in Boston or he will not.”

  • die hard

    so…Theo signs and we dont make the world series during his 3 yr tenure..then what?…we will be knee deep into more unsustainable free agent contracts and he will end up as Commish of baseball or mayor of Boston…what did we gain?…nuttin…

    • Internet Random

      Make it stop, Bert.  Please …

      Please.

    • Joe Cartwright

      It would be even more humiliating if we signed some no name guy and we don’t win within his contract. “the cubs could’ve gotten Epstein, Freidman, Cashman or any of the other various successful candidates. It’s no wonder they didn’t win. It’s like they could’ve gotten filet mignon but instead they decided to get the spam sandwich.”

      • TWC

        Dick Tidrow would never let that happen, Joseph.  Mark my words.  Dick Tidrow is no spam sandwich.

        • Joe Cartwright

          I wasn’t specifically talking about him. Actually, it wasn’t really any specific candidate as the spam sandwich. More of a “if you can get the best available, why did you get someone else?” type thing.

  • Curt

    I’m just saying get on with it already let the cubs ask him if he wants the job if yes thts great if it’s no then fine let us look somewhere else dealing with the red sox makes u feel like u need a shower just talking with them, cubs have many decisions to make Theo is good but so are many others . give it to someone who really wants to be here and can deal with the expectations and bs that goes with it but get Theo or move on.

    • Matt

      Amen! I believe it was best said by one Morgan Freeman when he said, “Get busy livin, or get busy dying.” Let’s get this thing figured out and move on if needs be.

      • CubFan Paul

        ..a morgan freeman quote ..hilarious

    • Andrew

      I think there’s been a lot more going on behind the scenes. Ricketts is good at keeping things quiet. The fact that the Cubs asked for permission to talk to Epstein has really been the only factual piece of information released. Everything else has been reading between the lines. For all we know Ricketts has interviewed Epstein, Cashman, Friedman, and a slew of others and is simply making his final decision. We’re not going to hear a lot of the details until the hire is announced.

  • Wilbur

    I think we’re getting a little impatient with this whole selection process. I suggest some folks chill a little and enjoy the weekend as I think we’re looking at a week or two before we see anything notable happen.

    The Iron Maiden had a great quote on patience that seems to align with the opinions I see floating through BN and Cubdom:
    I am extraordinarily patient, provided I get my own way in the end.
    Margaret Thatcher (1925 – )

    Margaret is now 86 and she hasn’t seen the Cubs win a world series in her life time either.

    • TWC

      Wilbur, don’t forget this timely Iron Maiden quote:

      And as I lay there gazing at the sky
      My body’s numb and my throat is dry
      And as I lay forgotten and alone
      Without a tear I draw my parting groan

      I think it’s quite germane to this discussion, really.

      • Internet Random

        Run to the hills.  Run for your lives.

        • TWC

          Thank.  You.

          It may contrast with my *cough* image, but I loves me some Iron Maiden.

          • Internet Random

            To everything, there is a season.  That includes Maiden.

        • Rancelot

          Iron Maiden’s tribute to Dick Tidrow…aka The Trooper \m/

          You’ll take my life but I’ll take yours too
          You’ll fire your musket but I’ll run you through
          So when you’re waiting for the next attack
          You’d better stand there’s no turning back

          Up the Irons!!!

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        I love this place…

  • Mike

    This morning’s conference was very relevant, indeed determinative to an additional fact. From both prominent Chicago and Boston writers we know the Cubs and Ricketts asked for permission to talk to Epstein. We also know the commissioner and the Red Sox would have both received the request. Both towns seem to have the story straight. The Cubs were requesting to talk to Epstein for the position of President of Baseball operations removing Crane K from the layer between Epstein and Ricketts and a clear promotion from his present situation.

    If you view from the prism of the known, it all becomes more clear. First, as Brett astutely points out, there was no Epstein. That is very significant. Second, maybe even more telling is the weird comment from Henry about the shelf life of a GM. Sure as hell seems like a subtle preparation of the public from an owner to a Red Sox fan base they are about to lose their GM. And maybe more importantly to the situation with Theo, not a high compliment from the owner, maybe even spilled milk? Third, Epstein is known to have issues with Lucchino, and here’s Lucchino in effect discussing him.

    Finally and most importantly, there is this weird and revealing tidbit form Henry:

    Henry added: “There is a certain protocol in this game and it is if someone asks permission for a job that’s not lateral, you give them permission.”

    To me this is in context of the conversation the most revealing of all the conference. Henry while refusing to discuss the specifics pretty well admits that the Cubs have been given permission to speak to Epstein. And if Epstein refused, which is possible, would it make that much sense for some of the other bizarre conversation. It’s possible Epstein turns down the Cubs, goes elsewhere , or fulfills the Boston contract, but Henry really didn’t give much of a vote of confidence to Epstein in Boston long-term and it sure appears obvious he gave the Cubs permission to discuss the job. In the end, whether now or sometime next week, the Theo thing is nearing an end, one way or another.

  • die hard

    Tidrow, Wren, Bush et al would not bankrupt the Cubs …Theo cant wait to get his hands on purse strings cause thats all he knows…Alternatively if Ricketts tells him that all decisions over $500,000 impact requires each of the Ricketts owners to sign off, then either Theo says no…or he says yes indicating hes desperate to get out of Boston for some reasons we wont find out about til next June and too late….walk away Mr. Ricketts is advice someone should be giving him…

  • die hard

    adaptation of Martyrdom by John Keats

    I have been astonished that men could die martyrs for their religion -
    I have shudder’d at it.
    I shudder no more.
    I could be martyr’d for my religion
    The Cubs are my religion
    And I could die for that.
    I fear I will die for that.

    • TWC

      Dick Tidrow wouldn’t be a martyr.  The universe itself would die for him.

    • http://www.michigangoat.blogspot.com MichiganGoat

      Don’t modify Keats, Chuck Norris wouldn’t mess with perfect poetry nor should you.

  • Joe Cartwright

    I know this is a cubs website but I was watching the D-backs vs Brewers game (cuz it’s the only baseball on) and when Axford went out to the mound, my first thought was “what the hell is on his face?”. He has grown one of the most disgusting mustaches i’ve ever seen.

  • die hard

    speaking of man crushes…I wont ruin your dream..gnite

  • ty

    Hi Quade. This is Tony or as you call me – russie. did you see us win tonight? thank goodness you left Marm in that comeback game recently and appreciate you going right at Pujols -or as you call him–Pooh. couldn*t have done it without you.

  • Toosh

    Fuck you. Selig should be after all your juicers. Now I have to watch at least 4 more games of you whine-asses.

  • Rooster

    Wilson has been decent but if I recall he was a walking candidate for the DL poster child as a closer/stopper. We have enough garbage contracts.  We need a DAVE DUNCAN pitching coach…crapping midline starters sign for small bucks, get the mechanics tinkered with and win 12-14 games.  Coaching first, players second.  Cripe we were last in walks, walks taken, errors, etc.  This team blew the big one.  Time for a GM and a solid GM SOON!  Cmon Ricketts!  I’d hire Ron Shandler myself but hey….what do I know.  OUT

    • Jeff

      I would be all for your fantasy baseball guru as GM if I wasn’t sold on Dick Tidrow already.

Bleacher Nation Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. Bleacher Nation is a private media site, and it is not affiliated in any way with Major League Baseball or the Chicago Cubs. Neither MLB nor the Chicago Cubs have endorsed, supported, directed, or participated in the creation of the content at this site, or in the creation of the site itself. It's just a media site that happens to cover the Chicago Cubs.

Bleacher Nation is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Google+