It’s September 2.
The Chicago Cubs have an 86-win team, a 15.5 game lead in the NL Central, a roster containing MVP, Gold Glove, and Cy-Young candidates, a mad scientist of a manager … and no contract extension for the guy that put it all together.
We are but a month away from the end of the 2016 regular season – Theo Epstein’s last season under contract – and the Cubs President of Baseball Operations has still not signed an extension with the Chicago Cubs.
We’ve been telling you to be patient, not to worry, and that something was sure to get done at some point soon (and I’ll still tell you that today), but it’s officially fair to wonder what’s, uh … you know … up.
Unfortunately, neither I nor Epstein have a very specific answer for you right now, but the Cubs President did at least address the issue on a recent radio hit with ESPN’s Waddle & Silvy (you can listen to the full interview here) and it’s mostly good news … but in the “No news is good news” type of way.
“It’s a non-story,” Epstein said. “Tom [Ricketts] and I are on the same page – we have been …. If we’re guilty of anything, it’s sort of just not sitting down and making it a priority, engaging on it, but we’re going to. We expect to get it done here soon.”
Epstein went on to acknowledge that although he isn’t worried, we do now find ourselves in September. Meaning that it’s something they’ll now be forced to get around to sooner rather than later, but also that it’s just not something he thinks and worries about on a daily basis – which is fair. Epstein is in the middle of one of the most exciting seasons of his already-exciting executive career. If he really felt like he was on the same page as the owner, focusing on the season and the playoffs might really be the best thing for everyone.
(Although, now that the non-waiver and the waiver trade deadlines have passed, it’s possible that he could have at least a little more time on his hands.)
If you’re looking for more good news than the same old, “we’re not worried,” though, it’s at least worth pointing out that Epstein suggested Silvy will not be headed to Italy (as per his bet with David Kaplan, that Epstein would indeed stay), and will instead have to go to Olive Garden to get his fix.
So that’s something.