“But what if Theo Epstein comes only on the condition you make him President?” you ask.
That sounds fine to me.
Does he need a presidential escort? If so, I’ll drive to O’Hare in my pajamas if it makes him happy.
He wants to be called Barack Epstein? So, be it.
How does Theo Obama sound to you? That works for me.
But why stop at President Theo?
Emperor Epstein has a nice ring to it.
Theo, The Sith Lord just rolls off the tongue.
Presidente. Prez. Chief. Czar. Shah. Premier. Prime Minister. Master. Whatever makes you happy, kiddo. Just as long as you end up working on the corner of Clark and Addison.
Somewhere, Crane Kenney is updating his résumé.
The courtship of the Red Sox GM almost sounds like something out of the olden days.
Tom Ricketts is asking for Theo Epstein’s hand in marriage. The Red Sox might ask for 40 acres of land and Ricketts’ finest mule in return.
And if that’s the case, as long as that mule isn’t named Starlin Castro or Brett Jackson, you’ve got to make the deal.
The Cubs would have to take John Lackey and the remaining $45 million left on his deal? Alright, you drive a hard bargain.
Though, Lackey’s 15-7 record, 3.17 earned run average, 1.20 WHIP in 31 starts (32 appearances) against National League competition make me wonder if a change of scenery out of the AL East and into the NL Central could rejuvenate what has turned out to be a free agent bust for Epstein.
Besides, the Cubs will need to fill the role of overpaid frontline starter once Carlos Zambrano takes his act to South Beach with Ozzie Guillen.
Long story, short: Theo Epstein is the ideal candidate to replace Jim Hendry as Cubs general manager. At age 38, he has proven he can handle the pressure of pleasing a rabid, irrational fan base by building two world championship teams and putting together a list of impressive prospects in the pipeline to win a few more.
Unfortunately, like Matt Garza’s 2008 ALCS MVP trophy, none of that helps the Cubs move forward in their quest to get out of the dumps.
However, what Epstein would bring to Wrigley Field is a baseball mind who would bring the archaic Cubs into the 21st century in regard to everything from sabermetrics, draft strategy, the emphasis on pitching and production from the farm.
Think Moneyball, with a healthy serving of HGH on the side.
The Red Sox have won 95, 98, 95, 86, 96, 95, 95, 89 and 90 games since Epstein took over after the 2002 season. While Boston has seven 90-win seasons in that time span, the Cubs have only one (2008) to go along with five seasons in which they’ve been above the .500 mark.
(Seriously, the standards are so low for some Cubs fans, pointing this out makes people believe Jim Hendry did an adequate job as GM. I digress.)
But don’t get me wrong, it’s not as if Epstein doesn’t come without a few black maks.
Carl Crawford is to Epstein what Alfonso Soriano was to Hendry.
JD Drew is what would have an oft-injured and over-hyped Milton Bradley mated with a lackadaisical Aramis Ramirez and was paid $70 million dollars.
$51 million to talk to Daisuke Matsuzaka and $52 million to sign him makes the Carlos Zambrano and Ryan Dempster extensions look like child’s play, no?
Still, Epstein was able to overcome that with stellar draft choices such as Jonathan Papelbon (2003), Dustin Pedroia (2004), Jacoby Ellsbury & Clay Buchholz (2005) and Daniel Bard (2006).
That alone should send Cubs fans into a tizzy until this whole thing is resolved.
Now excuse me while I tidy up in the event Mr. President makes an announcement.