Can We Pretend Things Besides Theo Epstein Matter? and Other Bullets

As you’ve seen across the web this morning, everyone is running with the WEEI report that the Chicago Cubs and Theo Epstein have agreed to a deal that will bring Epstein to Chicago for five years, and something north of $15 million (which report I listened to live, and wrote about some four hours ago, but whateves). That rumor/news makes the rest of what’s going on in the Cubs’ world seem relatively small, but let’s pretend we’re not totally preoccupied …

  • The NLCS is not exactly an enjoyable watch for Cubs fans – Brewers? Cardinals? Sigh. But it looks like our antipathy for the Cards trumps the Brewers – 68% of Cubs fans would prefer to see the Brewers win. Would you like me to punch you in the groin, or kick you in the groin?
  • Robin Ventura was surprised when he was offered the White Sox managerial job, but probably not as shocked as Paul Konerko to learn that he was also considered. ”Well, it was considered long enough for me to realize that Paul is a very cerebral person and he would probably drive himself nuts right now playing and managing at the same time,” White Sox GM Kenny Williams said. “But that’s the kind of respect I have for him that yeah, I did consider it. Then I thought I think I would rather him be focused more on hitting third or fourth in the lineup and driving in 100 runs rather than trying to worry about 25 other guys in addition to it. We are trying to win.” The sun shines brighter on the North Side every day.
  • The 200 pages of plans for the Cubs’ Mesa Spring Training complex/vacation destination facility have been released after the final agreements were hammered out.
  • Relatedly, Arizona State regents approved a 30-year plan for the school’s baseball team to play at the Cubs’ Spring Training facilities. They are expected to begin playing there in 2014, and will pay the Cubs rent after the first $1.1 million in tickets, concessions, and parking. Synergy! I suddenly feel like I should be a Sun Devil baseball fan.
  • Chicago has a ton of diehard female fans, says ESPNW.
  • This will probably get its own write-up in the coming days, depending on what happens, but the Boston Globe has a pretty salacious retelling of the Boston Red Sox’s September collapse, which reminds me a whole lot of college. Booze, chicken, and video games feature prominently. Only a few women, which, yeah, sounds about right.
  • Brian Cashman is expected to get a new deal from the Yankees to stay on as GM, which, like, duh.
  • Oh, by the way … did you hear that the Cubs have agreed to terms with Theo Epstein, pending final discussions with the Red Sox? SQUEAL! (Buster Olney says the deal is five years and $15 million, but with an additional $3.5 million bonus Epstein was supposed to get from the Sawx, which will now be paid by the Cubs.)

Brett Taylor is the editor and lead writer at Bleacher Nation, and can also be found as Bleacher Nation on Twitter and on Facebook.

41 responses to “Can We Pretend Things Besides Theo Epstein Matter? and Other Bullets”

  1. Cliffy

    A suggestion for the name of the cubs computer, the boston one is named carmine. The cubs should name there’s Santo, this way in the organizational meetings 1 ricketts needs information on a player or trade, he can ask what is Santo think?

  2. MichiganGoat

    “Chicago has a ton of diehard female fans, says ESPNW.”

    So that’s why die hard post so often?

  3. Glenallen's One Homer

    I really might as well not go to classes today since I just spent my first one furiously looking at updates

    1. Fishin Phil

      Work ain’t getting a whole lot of attention either!

  4. Ron

    This happening in the middle of the day could get me fired. ThanksBrett!

  5. The Big Mustafa

    I think this solidifies my case for Jews being the single most important part of any baseball operation.

    And, the food at Wrigley will definitely get better.

    1. MichiganGoat

      That’s just not right dude

      1. The Big Mustafa

        Yes it is…shut it.

      2. Bails17

        What’s wrong with it!  It’s a compliment!!

    2. Laura

      Huh? Since when does kosher food = flavor?

  6. rocky8263

    Too bad Harvey Weinstein isn’t a Cubs fan.

  7. dreese

    just got a text from ESPN buster onley says that thei has left the red sox for the cub and he got a 5 yrear deal worth nearly 20 million!!!! dont care about the money we got THEO EPSTEIN!!!!!!!!!!!!

  8. ari gold

    Brett, what usually happens in the minors when a new GM is announced? What I mean, is will we bring in new minor league coaches. It’s no secret that our current coaches promote aggressiveness in our hitters. It’s why every one of our affiliates were at the bottom of walks and OBP. That’s not going to work with Epstein. Will he make them change the philosophy or simply bring in new coaches? Player development is going to be crucial.

    1. Matt

      Along that same line, are we thinking that Rudy Jaramillo may be gone soon as well.  I think we all agree that Quade and Riggans are down the river, but what about the best hitting coach in baseball?

  9. JulioZuleta

    I bet Quade is packing his office as we speak

    1. Fishin Phil

      I certainly hope so.

  10. Bails17

    It will be like a trickle down effect that will take some time.  Once he has a grasp of the big issues…he may look to replace/hire new roving instructors, and other higher level type guys that will then bring in some new guys into the fold as minor league coaches or managers.  But you will not see all new coaches/managers next year for sure.

  11. Cliffy

    Anybody else think that the Cubs system wide approach to taking walks, extending at bats and not first pitch swinging is about to change dramatically. What other changes do others think may happen?

    1. Toosh

      The Cubs’ approach to at-bats at the ML level won’t change until Jaramillo is gone.

      1. JulioZuleta

        So 15 minutes after Theo gets to Wrigley?

        I’m thinking his press conference starts “Hello, I’d like to thank you all for showing up here today, Mike, Mark, Rudy, you guys can go start packing your stuff.”

    2. MichiganGoat

      Um our current hitting coach has a swing early philosphy, I hope we move to a more patient, walk type of team.

      1. Bails17

        Actually….he is not a SWING early guy….he is a guy that wants his players to get there front foot down and be in a strong hitting position early.  I really don’t like what he teaches…Byrd should be getting so much more out of his bottom half it’s crazy.

  12. 1908Blues

    For those that think nothing else matters, Peter Gammons coming up on WEEI:

  13. johnnyqb

    Theo will definitely bring an OBP related approach to hitting, something we have not had at Wrigley since……. well, have we ever? Who was the last Cub with an OBP of .400? Of course Cub fans can be patient. The key is that the arrow is now pointing resoundingly up.

  14. Todd

    Just read the Globe article about the Red Sox clubhouse… Yikes!! That team was def in need of a serious shake-up!

    1. Internet Random

      … made me appreciate (even more) guys like Carlos Pena who make some effort to exert some leadership in the clubhouse.

      1. Lou

        And to think the Chicago media wants to run him out of town. Amazing!

        1. Todd

          Everything about that organization this past season is a cautionary tale about resting on your laurels.

          1. Fishin Phil

            Let’s get us some laurels first, then we can worry about whether to rest on them or not.

  15. Internet Random

    From the Globe article about the Red Sox collapse:

    For Beckett, Lester, and Lackey, the consequences were apparent as their body fat appeared to increase and pitching skills eroded.

    Heh, heh.

    1. Lou

      According to some reports the were seen between innings in the clubhouse playing video games and drinking. WOW!

  16. EQ76

    So, how long until Quade’s arse is unemployed?

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