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- Whatever the Cubs truly do or do not have available to them on the financial side of things (the luxury tax – from a purely relative dollars perspective – just isn’t that much), you can expect them to explore as many significant avenues for change as possible. That much was clear from Theo Epstein’s season-ending press conference, and was underscored in his comments here to Patrick Mooney in a great read:
The Cubs are not trading Kris Bryant. But Theo Epstein is feeling restless and boxed in: "We're not going to sit here and celebrate 95 wins. We're going to be pissed off about the way the season ended." https://t.co/5ZSazJ8VzI
— Patrick Mooney (@PJ_Mooney) November 13, 2018
- You won’t get any clues in there from Epstein on what the Cubs can do from a financial perspective, but you do get a very genuine confirmation that there isn’t simply a sense of, OK, well, we won 95 games and we have a very good team, so let’s just try the same thing again. For example, look at this quote from Epstein:
“Everyone who was around the team, from the players themselves to you guys (in the media) to the fans, we all know that the takeaway from that season wasn’t the positives …. The takeaways are that we got caught from behind and we had opportunities to put that division away and to make another postseason run. For myriad reasons, it didn’t happen, so we damn well better be honest with ourselves about the reasons why it didn’t happen and find ways to fix it. Or else what the hell are we doing here? So, yeah, we’re not going to sit here and celebrate 95 wins. We’re going to be pissed off about the way the season ended. It doesn’t matter if I’m pissed off. Our players are pissed off. And they know that they have an opportunity to be part of something special. They basically built it. They helped build it. And we want to take full advantage of it because you can’t take anything for granted in this game. You look up and it goes really fast.”
- It has always been true – even if the Cubs went out and signed Bryce Harper or Manny Machado – that the most important piece of the 2019 puzzle would come from guys who are already on the Cubs. Continued success for the rotation, stability in the bullpen, and bounce-backs on offense. And it’s true that the Cubs *could* go into next season with basically the same team – maybe another reliever or two – and probably be the NL Central favorite on paper. But actually doing that in the middle of a competitive window where you can already see where the end of the horizon is lurking? That would be utterly insane, and a complete abdication of the front office’s duty to, as Epstein said, “take full advantage.”
- Also, hashtag change? From #WeAreGood to #WeArePissed?
- Even the Cubs got into #CubsHoldingCats:
- Random Javy love:
- Heads up: huge sale (50% off) on this fancy cookware set at Amazon today. And we are very into sales season at the MLB Shop and Fanatics, so hit them up for big deals today.