Theo Epstein steps down as Cubs' Head of Baseball Ops

Bergs

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Could he get that in Cleveland? A ring there would complete the Red Sox-Cubs-Tribe trifecta of accursed franchises.
 

InstaFace

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I hope he takes over Minor League Baseball or somehow does something for the good of the game writ large.

I dunno about FSG, I don't think he really knows any sport but baseball super well and I find a reunion with JWH et al to be pretty unlikely.
 

Time to Mo Vaughn

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Is Theo a HoFer? 2 World Series for two historic franchises with long time WS droughts.

There are currently 4 GMs in the Hall of Fame Ed Barrow, Branch Rickey, George Weiss and Larry MacPhail.

I'd certainly think that's he's close, and another WS with another team would absolutely guarantee it.
 

JimD

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I hope he takes over Minor League Baseball or somehow does something for the good of the game writ large.
Short of being named commissioner, I don't know what position has the power to accomplish something good that the owners would go along with.
 

Smiling Joe Hesketh

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Is Theo a HoFer? 2 World Series for two historic franchises with long time WS droughts.

There are currently 4 GMs in the Hall of Fame Ed Barrow, Branch Rickey, George Weiss and Larry MacPhail.

I'd certainly think that's he's close, and another WS with another team would absolutely guarantee it.
He's got 3 WS (2004, 2007, 2016).

Of course he's in the Hall already.
 

Harry Hooper

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Doesn't Beane have an ownership share? Is Theo headed for replacing him in Oakland?
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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Is Theo a HoFer? 2 World Series for two historic franchises with long time WS droughts.

There are currently 4 GMs in the Hall of Fame Ed Barrow, Branch Rickey, George Weiss and Larry MacPhail.

I'd certainly think that's he's close, and another WS with another team would absolutely guarantee it.
Absolutely yes he is. And there are more front office executives than those four in the Hall. Just recently, Pat Gillick and John Schuerholz have been enshrined.
 

Ford Frick's Asterisk

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Normally, I'd have said no in Cleveland since they've gone with in-house leadership for over 30 years. However, 20% of the team ownership was vacated when John Sherman left to purchase the Royals, which has been one of the factors in their payroll slashing. The understanding when Sherman was in Cleveland was that he would gradually purchase more shares until he took controlling interest from the Dolans. If Theo has that kind of money and committed to keeping the team in Cleveland, he'd make a much better owner, but with the more financial backers he'd need, I'm guessing the odds would quickly decrease.
 

nvalvo

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Is Theo a HoFer? 2 World Series for two historic franchises with long time WS droughts.

There are currently 4 GMs in the Hall of Fame Ed Barrow, Branch Rickey, George Weiss and Larry MacPhail.

I'd certainly think that's he's close, and another WS with another team would absolutely guarantee it.
I would say he already is. It's not just the WS titles with historic franchises, it's also that he is an emblematic figure of this period of baseball front.
 

Jeff Van GULLY

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In an ideal world, he would take a year off and come back as Commissioner. I don't think Manfred is what the league needs over the next decade.
 

jose melendez

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Is Theo a HoFer? 2 World Series for two historic franchises with long time WS droughts.

There are currently 4 GMs in the Hall of Fame Ed Barrow, Branch Rickey, George Weiss and Larry MacPhail.

I'd certainly think that's he's close, and another WS with another team would absolutely guarantee it.
It's a no brainer--unless he turns out to be a Nazi.
 

RG33

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In an ideal world, he would take a year off and come back as Commissioner. I don't think Manfred is what the league needs over the next decade.
That would be amazing. I have honestly not thought about him in that role before, but he would be absolutely perfect for it. I would love to see this happen.
 

judyb

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He seems to be right around the age when moving his family where his kids can spend more time with their grandparents becomes more important.
 

Mugsy's Jock

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Would the Dolans lets a non-Dolan take point?
I don't think of Larry Dolan as "one of those Dolans".

Larry's brother Chuck was the true genius of the family and had a fortune (more specifically, a multi-billion dollar idea: HBO and satellite delivery) stolen from him by Time Inc. Chuck's a tight-fisted operator, and if he hasn't been persuaded by now to let somebody other than the dimwitted Jim help run the sports teams, he never will be. [Disclaimer -- I once worked for Chuck and admire him. Jimmy, not so much.]

The Larry/Paul Dolan wing of the family is less mercurial. Managers and GMs don't get fired every 15 minutes. The Indians have had some minority ownership -- when John Sherman bought the Royals, it was revealed he had had been a minority partner of the Dolans. And I love the idea of Theo pulling off the Red Sox - Cubs - Indians trifecta. I just don't see the Cleveland Dolans making the investment, unless maybe Theo brings a bunch of money to the table with an investor group.

Edit: @Ford Frick's Asterisk knows the Indians situation and has better take on this above.
 
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Mugsy's Jock

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In an ideal world, he would take a year off and come back as Commissioner. I don't think Manfred is what the league needs over the next decade.
I just can't imagine the other baseball owners could stomach it. Theo is too progressive socially, business-wise, politically and baseball-wise to curry enough favor from the Reinsdorfs and Illitches and Cranes and Steinbrenners.
 

Ale Xander

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He should move back to Coolidge Corner in a year and be an advisor for Chaim.
 

Ale Xander

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Seattle would be the perfect spot for him. They have never won before.
Mets is better. He can live fairly close to where he did the first 22 years of his life, with a new owner who is willing to spend the $ and some pieces in place. And with being #2 in town, less pressure than in WV or Fenway, but still a baseball town with passionate fans.
 

SemperFidelisSox

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Does Theo have enough star power and influence behind the scenes to put together a group of investors and push the league for expansion? Being part of a group that brings a franchise to Nashville or Portland is probably his best chance at ownership.
 

OCST

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Is Theo a HoFer? 2 World Series for two historic franchises with long time WS droughts.

There are currently 4 GMs in the Hall of Fame Ed Barrow, Branch Rickey, George Weiss and Larry MacPhail.

I'd certainly think that's he's close, and another WS with another team would absolutely guarantee it.
Hell yes. Not even a close question. First ballot. No one, player, executive, whomever, in the game is more deserving.

I think he's done all he can do in baseball. Congressman Epstein? Theo Epstein, venture capitalist? Something way beyond the game is my guess.
 

cornwalls@6

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Maybe test his management style and approach to analytics, and try to conquer another sport, like DePodesta is attempting to do with the Browns? Stay in town and restore the Bears to their past glory. Feels like he probably would have drafted Mahomes or Watson over Trubisky.
 

Cesar Crespo

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Hell yes. Not even a close question. First ballot. No one, player, executive, whomever, in the game is more deserving.

I think he's done all he can do in baseball. Congressman Epstein? Theo Epstein, venture capitalist? Something way beyond the game is my guess.
He'd probably work on The Foundation To Be Named Later with his brother. He left the first time to do charity work, wouldn't surprise me if that's what he does again.
 

Trautwein's Degree

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Does Theo have enough star power and influence behind the scenes to put together a group of investors and push the league for expansion?
Expansion aside it wouldn't surprise me if Covid has put significant financial pressure on some owners.

It seems likely that in the next year that one or more franchise will be sold. Theo as part of an ownership group makes a ton of sense. He has some scratch but that's not what he would really bring to the table. What he would bring is connections inside MLB, and a ton of credibility to whatever group he was in. He would also be attractive because there's little doubt that winning drives revenues to some degree and he knows how to assemble winning teams.
 
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Ale Xander

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Maybe test his management style and approach to analytics, and try to conquer another sport, like DePodesta is attempting to do with the Browns? Stay in town and restore the Bears to their past glory. Feels like he probably would have drafted Mahomes or Watson over Trubisky.
I see Theo as more of a basketball guy than football.

Clippers perhaps? With George (or LouW?) playing the Garciaparra part.
 

Tuff Ghost

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Joe Pos thinks he should be Commish also:
View: https://twitter.com/JPosnanski/status/1329100648336531460

He's saved Boston. He's saved the North Side of Chicago. I got Theo Epstein's next job: Save baseball.

Sadly, paywalled.
The article does not seem to be saying he should be commissioner, but rather take on a brand new role solely focused on moving baseball forward. To be honest, the article sounds a lot more interesting than it actually is. I was hoping Joe would talk through what this role could look like and involve, but he keeps it pretty vague and abstract, indicating it would be up to Epstein to do what is best. It's a fun thought experiment, though.

Theo Epstein should be put in charge of saving baseball.
...
Epstein is the person to write that chapter. I know this from personal experience: I have been lucky enough to have long conversations with Theo about how to make baseball more entertaining for the next generation. When you hear him talk about baseball’s future, you realize this is a subject that captivates him, consumes him, perhaps even obsesses him.
Instead, as Epstein has told me, people have in mind what they would consider to be ideal baseball. What is ideal baseball? Well, that’s for you to answer. If you go to one game, how many home runs would you want to see? How many strikeouts? Would you want to see a triple or two? Stolen bases? How long would the game last? How many great defensive plays would you like to see? How many pitching changes is too many? Are you bothered by defensive shifts? Would you stay for extra innings? If not, what exciting finish would get you to stay for extras?

There are a hundred questions like this, and by answering them we could get something of a consensus of what fans want baseball to look like. Then, Epstein says, we could try to move baseball toward that ideal, not with gawky and awkward rule changes that make baseball fans roll their eyes, but with thoughtful changes and barely perceptible adjustments that would make it rewarding to play the game a little bit differently than players and teams do now.
Theo Epstein is the right person to take the game forward. I don’t know what the job would look like — I personally would create a special role for someone to focus entirely on taking the game forward — and I don’t know if Epstein would take it.
 

Earthbound64

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Well, it certainly looks like he's thinking bigger than just a team president role. I really wonder if this is step one of a move against Manfred. . .

View: https://twitter.com/HannahRKeyser/status/1328790336093773826



Theo Epstein said he was interested in a baseball job that allows him to help address some of more existential threats to the game. So I asked him what he thinks those are:

View attachment 36472
Considering that Manfred is actively undermining and harming Baseball, that would be wonderful.
But, as others have said, I can't see the owners going for it.
 

mauf

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Considering that Manfred is actively undermining and harming Baseball, that would be wonderful.
But, as others have said, I can't see the owners going for it.
I doubt the owners are satisfied Manfred’s leadership. This is not Roger Goodell being hated by fans but delivering for owners on the things that matter to them (TV deals, CBA, concussion settlement); the business side of baseball is not trending in the right direction.

I find it hard to believe that the Theo Epstein who chafed at working under Larry Lucchino would choose to take a position with as little inherent authority as Commissioner of Baseball. If Theo wants to take a year off and find a new job in the game, however, the timing could line up — I see the owners looking for new leadership once the CBA is done.