Theo Epstein Wants Playoffs or Suck, Nothing in Between, and Other Bullets

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Theo Epstein Wants Playoffs or Suck, Nothing in Between, and Other Bullets

Chicago Cubs

cubs theo epstein uh ohYou’re probably noticing that these Bullets are up in the wee hours of the morning. That isn’t inadvertent. The Wife and I are up right now, tentatively getting ready to head to the hospital for Baby Festival 2013. Nothing is certain just yet, and I’ll alert you when I’ve officially left the building, so to speak.

  • Theo Epstein continues his brutal honesty tour, this time in an interview with David Haugh. “What I want to avoid is the middle ground,” Epstein said. “It’d be nice to make the playoffs or get a protected draft pick [awarded the bottom ten teams]. We’re not hiding that. There’s no glory in 78 wins instead of 73. Who cares? We’re going to see where we are and take a real cold assessment in the middle of the season. If we have a legitimate chance to push for a playoff spot then 2013 can become our primary focus. If we think a playoff spot’s not in the cards, there will be no concern for appearances or cosmetics whatsoever. We’ll continue to address our future and trade off some pieces that would keep us respectable.” Have I mentioned how much I appreciate this guy? None of this is anything Epstein hasn’t said before, at least at the margins, but the guy is just putting it all on the table for fans to deal with: if the Cubs aren’t looking like a playoff contender come July, they’re stripping it down again to serve the twin purposes of adding young talent through trades, and having a record in the bottom ten in baseball. (By the way: having that protected first round pick matters only if the Cubs plan on going after some top free agents in the near future.)
  • Dale Sveum on prospect Junior Lake, per Carrie Muskat: “He looks better in games than he does when he’s doing his work. It’s like the game speeds up for him in [batting practice] and he slows it down in the game. That’s always a nice asset to have.”
  • Scott Baker threw 25 pitches successfully in live batting practice yesterday, and Arodys Vizcaino threw 25 in the bullpen. All good on those fronts so far.
  • The Cubs have one of the top 20 Dominican Summer League/Venezuelan Summer League Prospects according to Baseball America – right-handed pitcher Daury Torrez, who destroyed the DSL last year (which doesn’t mean much), and is likely to come over to the States this year.
  • Zack Greinke just went up in a lot of people’s estimation. Why? Because he admitted what we all already know to be true: when it came to free agency, he was all about the money.
  • More details from Bob Brenly on how his deal with WGN fell apart at the last minute.
  • Kerry Wood comes to Sammy Sosa’s defense, and says the Cubs should indeed consider retiring his jersey.

Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.