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When the Ricketts Family bought the Chicago Cubs, I was pretty happy.

Sure, it took a little time for the Mark Cuban desire to wear off, but, once things settled, I decided that I was pleased to have a family of Cubs fans owning the team. If I could be glib: rich fans tend to be the best owners. So, I smiled.

But I had no idea. I had no idea Tom Ricketts was going to make Theo Epstein happen. And Jed Hoyer happen. And Jason McLeod happen. And new facilities throughout the organization happen.

I also had no idea that he’d be so into remaking the Cubs into a 21st Century organization that he’d make available all the resources necessary to see that through. And, then, once he’d done it, that he’d be making an appearance at the leading Sabermetrics Conference as a panel speaker. But he is.

Tom Ricketts will be a featured speaker at the 2012 SABR Analytics Conference, held March 15 to 17 in Phoenix. The subject of his talk remains unannounced, and it could be only tangentially related to advanced statistics, but, like, dude: the Cubs’ owner is speaking at a sabermetrics conference. Would that have been fathomable under the previous ownership group? No. Very, very much no.

Things have changed dramatically at Clark and Addison, and almost exclusively for the better. Even if you aren’t into sabermetrics, certainly you recognize that a “big tent” approach to running an organization (i.e., taking into consideration all methods, tools, etc.) is wise. These small stories signal big, good things going on in the Cubs’ organization.

The Cubs’ Director of Professional Scouting, Joe Bohringer, will also be speaking at the conference, for what it’s worth.

  • Fishin Phil

    That is nice. Old ownership couldn’t spell Sabermetrics.

    • ferrets_bueller

      …which is pretty bad, considering they were a newspaper company.

      • DocWimsey

        My autocorrect allows sabremetrics, sabermetrics and sabrmetrics. (I write too many papers for English journals!) Strictly speaking, the last one probably should be correct!

  • http://www.casualcubsfan.com hansman1982

    COMPUTERS SHOULDN’T MAKE BASEBALL DECISIONS YOU NEED PEOPLE LOOKING AT PLAYERS AND COMPARING THEM TO RACE DOGS!!!!!!

    In all reality, this is pretty freekin sweet!

  • DocWimsey

    heh, well, we all know what the graph of “sustained success” vs. “ignoring data” looks like….

  • Ron Swanson

    This sabr conference is where they learn to sell printers, right? I think Dwight Schrute is presenting as well.

  • papa_g

    For too many years, all I’ve wanted from the Cubs was a reason to believe. Until the last few years of Tribune Co ownership, they never showed any indication of being smart enough or bold enough to put together a team even capable of having a chance to win. When they went for it with big name free agent signings over the last few years, they gave me reason to think that at least they were trying. But they bowed out of the playoffs early without even a win and the window started closing again.
    It is simply amazing how much things have turned around since the Theo thing happened. I really didn’t think Mr Ricketts had it in him. Maybe it was a stroke of pure luck that Theo and company fell to the Cubs. Or maybe it was pure genius on the part of ownership to land him. In any case, we all have reason to believe now that after more than a century being the loveable losers, that our loyalty will be rewarded. I’m tired of the character building phase. Let’s do some winning,

  • http://www.viewfromthebleachers.com Norm

    “Even if you aren’t into sabermetrics, certainly you recognize that a “big tent” approach to running an organization (i.e., taking into consideration all methods, tools, etc.) is wise.”

    Amazingly enough, there are still a lot of people who think it’s not so wise, but its information overload, or something,…but we’re getting there!

  • TeddyBallGame

    Preach “papa_G”, preach!!! I couldn’t agree more, very refreshing!!

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