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If there was ever a report that confirms that the Chicago Cubs have spoken to Boston Red Sox General Manager Theo Epstein about their GM opening, and that Epstein is at least thinking about leaving Boston, this is it.

From WEEI in Boston:

According to a major league source, the Red Sox — who are currently performing due diligence on potential managerial candidates — will not bring in candidates to interview for the position until after the status of GM Theo Epstein is resolved.

Epstein’s future with the Sox, after 10 seasons with the organization and nine as general manager, is uncertain at the moment, at a time when the Cubs have requested permission to talk to him and there is a report of his being seen in a Chicago Starbucks. Given the importance of the relationship between the manager and general manager, the Sox appear set to wait until the identity of the GM is determined before they bring in candidates to investigate their fit for the job.

To be sure, the Red Sox may be forced to wait to interview certain candidates until after the playoffs are over, because those candidates might be on teams still playing. But not all of the candidates are still involved in the playoffs, and, by waiting, the Red Sox can only hurt their chances of landing the candidate of their choice.

That means, as the WEEI report indicates, the Red Sox would be waiting to interview managerial candidates only if they believed Epstein might not be the new guy’s boss. Drawing logical conclusions therefrom, it seems highly likely that, if this report is accurate, the Cubs have received permission to speak to Epstein, which would confirm a CSNNE report from this weekend.

It would further suggest that Epstein has told the Red Sox he is strongly considering leaving, if he hasn’t accepting a new job already (which announcement could be held in abeyance until the two LCS are over). It doesn’t, of course, mean that Epstein is definitely coming to Chicago. But it’s another step in the right direction.

For those eager to have this resolved, the feeling is understandable. But, you have to understand the many layers of decisions that have to be made before things can be finalized. Do the Cubs want to interview anyone else? Does Epstein want to live and work in Chicago? Does his family? Is the offer to Epstein enough? What is Chicago offering Boston in terms of compensation? Is it enough? And so on, and so on.

I’m a junkie for these Epstein tidbits, so even I have to remind myself to be patient, and let the process run its course.

  • Dave

    I would think that if there were somebody they were really worried about losing, they would bring him in to interview with Cherington and Lucchino with Epstein just kind of chilling out in the corner of the room.  But there aren’t too many managerial openings right now, so they can probably afford to wait.

    • Bails17

      LOL…that’s not how that works bro.  I am sure they have talked to the guys they are interested in and let them know that they want the GM job in place before interviewing process for the manager will start.

  • Ari Gold

    I think the Red Sox have their eye on Quade. They’re just waiting for the Cubs to let him go. LOL

    • JulioZuleta

      Yeah, Quade’s hair must be (choose 1) A. falling out B. turning gray while waiting to find out his future.

      Low blow?

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        Ouch. No one and no subject is safe today.

        (I laughed.)

    • cccubfan

      That would be the Red Sox compensation…..LOL

  • LouCub

    Brett, what are the rules in regards to announcing decisions like this during the NLCS and the ALCS?? I seem to recall something about ARod’s contract extention getting done prior to the World Series and Selig had a cow over it.. Could that be a hold up??? You would also think that Tom Ricketts would have already had Billy Beane and Rick Hahn at least interviewed already and maybe Andrew Freidman as well..I’m still thinking Theo and hoping for Theo over any of those other guys, but it’s also really important to get this done so Theo could hire his staff and I doubt the BoSox will let him take any important pieces out of the organization so hooking up with people from other teams during the ALCS and NLCS and World Series would be a good time to get your ducks in a row instead of waiting in linbo till November which would suck and give us all ulcers!!

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      I don’t *think* there’s an actual rule, just a preferred practice (i.e., don’t announce big stuff during a playoff series). I’ve done a minimal amount of digging, and I’m not coming up with a rule.

      But, yes, it is absolutely possible that the Cubs already have their guy, and are waiting to announce it after the LCS. It’s also possible that they’ve interviewed any number of folks beyond Theo. And it’s possible that one of those guys, and not Theo, will get the job. It could be a total surprise. We’re just playing the odds at this point, and, based on the tea leaves, I’d say there’s a 60 to 70% chance Theo is the guy, and will be announced in the coming days.

  • LouCub

    @ JUlio, the way that fool has managed this year, no blow is too low…I can’t wait till he’s removed from the premisses

  • Matt

    I am going to disagree with LouCub and say that the blow was to low Julio. I am all in for making fun of Quade’s poor managment decisions, but will not cross the line of making fun of somebody who has a hair loss disease. I have a family member that suffers from the same disease, and it is nothing to poke fun at.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Sorry, Matt. You’re, of course, right. We get a little juvenile sometimes.

      • Matt

        No worries at all.   I like to be juvenile as much as the next guy.

  • Robbo

    Is Ricketts going to interview anyone other than Epstein? I know a lot of names were floated around towards the end of the season but haven’t heard a single rumor other than Theo in past week.

    • EQ76

      Does Ricketts even want anybody else?  I’d definitely interview Freidman but it seems that Cashman & Beane aren’t going anywhere, which makes you think it’s either Epstein or Freidman and if we whiff on both, I’d guess Hahn gets it.

  • philoe beddoe

    serious comment here…we always forget that when we talk about these people they are human beings..Theo Epstein may be torn up inside deciding on what to do…family to uproot, worked there for his whole career….I have worked in the same community for 21 years and if someone offered me a huge, huge promotion…I would have to really really think about it….we think that because these people make a lot of money and have these jobs (that we would love to have) that it’s so easy…..

    • http://TheoWaiting Cheryl

      You are so right. It’s not as if he’s moving a suburb away. If he decides to stay in Boston, it may not be in his best interest though. Once management knows ypu’re considering another position they start to think about a replacement. If he stays, they may not extend his contract and bring someone else in anyway. He’s in a tough position.

  • funkster

    “Ace, you’re full of crap. MLB sources say its 99.9 percent likely Theo stays with the BoSox” -Jon Heyman.

    • Mikey

      Jon Heyman is the one that’s full of crap. and you can’t base one opinion thinking thats the truth. Jon heyman then went on to say that that’s an “educated guess”

      • Funkster

        It was a joke.

        • Mikey

          HA-HA :D

          • EQ76

            John Hayman = douche bag

  • Matt

    WIth as much as he is inaccurate, I hope Jon Heyman shouts from the rooftops that we are not getting Epstein or Friedman.   We should be a lock for at least one of them then.

  • http://bleachernation.com ricosanto

    My money is still on Rick Hahn GM, Ryno manager, Hahn is alot like Theo when he came to BOSOX. harvard grad , go to work for his hometown team and end the DROUGHT. He would be motivated than Theo( who as already Won), or could Theo come in as Preisdent of Baseball Operations, Hahn GM , no assistant GM.

  • Dumpman

    I think this wraps up soon. Whether it be Epstein or a B lister. Listened to Dennis and Callahan this morning. They had Tom Shaer on. Shaer apparently has inside connections. Ill throw out a few heavy points he went over

    - We’re not only deep into the whole Theo thing, but we’re also very deep into Ricketts B list as well. Havent read a lot about anything other then Theo, so it was nice to hear we are totally prepared for life without Theo.

    - What could be holding up the process is committment from RIcketts on bettering the organization as a whole from metrics to advanced scouting to overall facilities.

    -Tom thinks Ricketts and Theo would form a great team.

    -Compensation is likely, but not at the Starlin Castro level.

    -Payroll likely to hit 100 million after we get past some of these tribune contracts

    Lots of goodies there. Expect the GM search to be concluded this week I’d assume.

    • baseballet

      Dumpman, are you saying that you heard that the Cubs payroll will go down once they’re out from under the Tribune legacy contracts?

    • Cub Realist

      Cubs payroll was between $127 and $134 Million last year, they have been over $100 Million every year for MANY years. Cubs were a top 5 payroll in all of baseball and the top payroll in the National League.

  • Swaz46

    I think we’ve all missed the most obvious choice for Cubs GM: Robin Ventura

    • Internet Random

      Dusty Baker.

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        Hawk Harrelson.

        • Toosh

          Interesting that you should (jokingly) mention Harrelson as a GM candidate for the Cubs. The White Sox only made him GM in 1986 because of who the Cubs GM was at the time, Dallas Green. Green was loud and brash and had the Cubs in the news, and the White Sox hoped Harrelson would do the same for them. Then, as now, White Sox ownership was inferior to the Cubs. They’ll always be 2nd in Chicago baseball.

          • jstraw

            *cough* (2005) *cough*

  • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

    Joel Sherman tweet:

    Asked friend of Epstein if that was Theo spotted in Chi. Answer: “That would be a pretty good bet.”

    • Matt

      I sure hope it was him.   I feel like this “wait” is taking over my life.  I update “bleachernation.com” at least 10 times per day to see if anybody has posted any new rumors.  Plus, I am not sure how much longer Brett can come up with “new and fresh” pictures of Theo for his posts.  I am enjoyng the variety thus far, but another week of this and the well may run dry.  Todays picture has been the best one yet.   Anybody else wonder what Theo and Tito are looking at?

      • Sam

        There are still some pretty good epstein pics out there lol

        • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

          For the record, that’s the one I’ve been saving for “the announcement,” should it come down.

    • CubFan Paul

      sweet ..i bet the next ‘real news’ we get from either team is a press conference where the news break

    • philoe beddoe

      well after that Joel Sherman treat I may have to re-write my post regarding it NOT being him…we may be back to the original 0.10 chance..

  • Matt

    At this point, I would be happy to here from Theo that his favorite type of pizza is Chicago style deep dish or that his favorite of the great lakes is Michigan.   Noboby has seen or heard from this man in a week.  I am not sure I even believe he is still alive.

    • hardtop

      …or that he ever existed…ooohhh

  • rocky8263

    If this all plays out like most of want, don’t forget Boston’s at Wrigley June 15,16,17.

    • Matt

      Would it be prudent to offer the Red Sox compensation in the form of the band “Chicago” playing a road show in Boston sometime?

      • Josh

        Only if the band Boston reciprocates in Chicago next year.

  • CubSouth

    Whomever the new GM is, he will have undoubtedly, the most off season work to do as for as any GM in baseball is concerned. I believe Ricketts can turn this organization around and that next yr could b a great yr. Thus, going over the contracts, mental state of some players and the personnel we have, in the organization, there is a lot to look thru and sort out. How long would it take to clean up this mess? I haven’t been team by team thru the majors but I don’t think is another with so much clutter. Moving contracts and getting nothing in return, not exactly having a whole lot to build around and then feeling as if everyone and anyone (minus Castro) can be gone. I sure hope the new GM puts his stamp on the team right away because it would be nice to finish a season with only a few changes needing to be made.

    • jstraw

      “I believe (…) that next yr could b a great yr”

      Why?

    • http://TheoWaiting Cheryl

      Theo, if he is the new GM will probably have Quade to be let go, then harder decisions after that. He probably already has a pretty good idea of what he wants to do and is spending time going over it with Ricketts. That s assuming he is the next GM. Ricketts could possibly name him President and GM.

  • CubSouth

    Its just that im a very optimistic person, if we were a team in the mid to low range market then I would seriously have my doubts. But money can do a lot of things for a team that was below. 500. Ricketts seems to want to make the Cubs a winning organization and by being methodical about his GM search, I feel we could go into next yr with a shot at the Central title. We may not have what it takes to go to a WS but the Central will be, again, a dogfight. Right now I believe all Cubs fans want is to watch meaningful games in September and with a few pieces, that’s possible. Plus you never know, as seen this yr, what can happen in the playoffs. Who out there thought the Red Sox wouldn’t have made the playoffs and that the Phillies would go in the best of 5 series?

  • rocky8263

    2012 and a .500 record would make $12,000 season ticket’s a wash.

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