Blog Entry

Under new Cubs regime, patience is the word

Posted on: December 29, 2011 12:27 pm
Edited on: December 29, 2011 12:28 pm
  •  
 


By Matt Snyder


Back when the Cubs first hired Theo Epstein to be the club president, I wrote that we shouldn't expect to see a short-term fix to a currently badly flawed team and organization. "The band-aid-on-a-broken-leg approach got Jim Hendry fired, so there's no way [Cubs chairman] Tom Ricketts would hire Epstein to do the same thing," I wrote.

It's now a few months later and we've seen a bevy of moves by Epstein, but none of them are big names. David DeJesus, Ian Stewart, Travis Wood, Andy Sonnanstine and Manny Corpas will hardly be mistaken for Jose Reyes, Albert Pujols, Jonathan Papelbon and C.J. Wilson anytime soon.

In that same article I referenced above, I wrote that Epstein had three possible routes to take in building the Cubs. I incorrectly guessed he'd try to win now while also building the foundation. Instead, Epstein and general manager Jed Hoyer have elected to take the long, slow rebuild route. It would appear any veteran with trade value is going to be dealt (Matt Garza and Marlon Byrd likely the next two, while one would expect the likes of Carlos Marmol, Geovany Soto and Ryan Dempster to be available by the trade deadline in July) as Sean Marshall already has been.

Now, it's awfully tough to tell a fanbase that has never seen a World Series championship (I mean, there can't possibly be a 110-year-old Cubs fan that remembers when he was seven, right?) to be patient, but that's how it has to be. The franchise needed a complete overhaul, and the process has begun. Give Ricketts credit for hiring a guy and giving him enough leeway to take as long as he needs to rebuild the organization. In return, the fans need to be patient and keep their eyes on the prize. Ricketts, Epstein and Hoyer are trying to slowly build one of the best farm systems in the majors while also being able to put together a massive payroll that dwarfs those of the competitors in the NL Central.

Cubs offseason
One would expect most fans to be open-minded about the situation. Thankfully, I couldn't find any "fire Theo Epstein" boards on the Internet (at least not from his Cubs perch) just yet. Our @EyeOnBaseball Twitter account did receive a deluge of messages from a disgruntled fan last week, though. The fan wanted Epstein fired immediately because he didn't sign Pujols and Mark Buehrle while also keeping Aramis Ramirez. I'm betting this kind of short-sighted sentiment is in the minority, but let's be realistic here. The Cubs were 71-91 last season. They have a mediocre farm system. Any attempt to make a quick fix would handcuff the franchise.

Let's keep all of this in mind when the 2012 Cubs suck. Any they will. They are going to be really bad. Any veteran performing well will probably be flipped to a contender in July (picture the Astros last season trading Hunter Pence and Michael Bourn while also shopping Wandy Rodriguez and Brett Myers). The fans who abandon the Cubs after a bad 2012 season aren't the real ones. The fans calling for the heads of Ricketts, Epstein and Hoyer aren't the ones with foresight. No, the real fans are the ones who will realize it's a rebuilding process and that the new braintrust is building the foundation through all these trades and can expect a top five overall draft pick in 2013. Also realize the Cubs, who can likely afford a player payroll of $150 million, only have $33.05 million committed in salaries in 2013 (Cot's Contracts).

Remember, this is a process. It's one that will likely transform the Cubs into a major player in the National League landscape -- possibly by as early as 2013. You don't change a century-plus loser into a winner by spending money like Montgomery Brewster (who, funnily enough, wore a Cubs jersey) just to fill two or three of dozens of holes. For now, the Cubs are a sleeping giant. In a few years, they might just be the Evil Empire of the NL Central.

As for the fans, listen to Axl Rose: "All (you) need, is just a little patience."

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnBaseball on Twitter, subscribe to the RSS feed and "like" us on Facebook.
  •  
Comments

Since: Aug 25, 2006
Posted on: January 22, 2012 11:38 pm
 

Under new Cubs regime, patience is the word

Always great to see an idiot sports reporter like -  - display is opinion and not the facts. Just like that other idiot Freeman.
The Cubs exercised the contract to keep Aramis, Aramis did not. Thats why he is not a Cub now. Snyder your a real moron, try being objective and truthful when reporting, it does wonders ~
And the Cubs could have offered Ramirez a contract after he refused the one-year mutual option. He was what we call in the biz a "free agent." And the Cubs didn't even make an offer. 



Since: Dec 5, 2011
Posted on: January 4, 2012 9:02 pm
 

Under new Cubs regime, patience is the word

you and the rest of these idiot cub fans deserve to continue sucking for decades to come.  why would a team give you bonifacio for zambrano??  but then, thats how delusional and stupid cub fans are.  go dump a beer on an opposing player while texting during the game you moron



Since: Jan 2, 2012
Posted on: January 2, 2012 6:24 pm
 

Under new Cubs regime, patience is the word

Sign Prince Fielder and build around him.....



Since: Apr 28, 2007
Posted on: January 2, 2012 6:19 pm
 

Under new Cubs regime, patience is the word

They need to build thru the draft. But what will happen is they will suck for one year and panic for a couple of big name players next year. Theo needs all the draft picks he can get.



Since: Aug 18, 2006
Posted on: January 2, 2012 3:36 pm
 

Under new Cubs regime, patience is the word

The farm system is god awful though, and even the evil Yankees have some home grown talent (Jeter, Posada, Cano, Petitte, Rivera, etc).  So they are trading the vets in an effort to jump-start that farm system.  If they simply signed free agents and traded players for major league talent, they would have a decent but not great team, and an empty farm system that would take much longer to restock.  Hendry bet the farm on winning in 2007-2009.  That got them a very good major league roster but one that was one and out in the playoffs two years in a row, with a couple of guys
(Soriano, Zambrano) that broke down earlier than expecte. 

Now they are a mess.  We might have heard it before, but Hendry did not rebuild th farm.  It has to be done.  I hate that they suck, but they do.   You can try like hell to field a team that wins 85-90 games but since you have little farm to trade, the only way to do it is to overpay for free agents.  Sound familiar?  The difference this time is new ownership, an actual baseball executive, rather than the GM being the top basebal guy, and the right priorities. 


That does not gaurantee success, but it is at least the correct process.    &nb
sp;



Since: Jun 29, 2008
Posted on: January 2, 2012 12:15 pm
 

Under new Cubs regime, patience is the word

Matt: 

Do you have any idea how many times a Chicago Cubs fan has heard that this is a process?  Or that we have to build up the farm system to be able to compete on a consistant basis?  Or that the new regime has a track record of success...so they'll do well if the fan base can just be patient?

We're sick of hearing that we have to embace the suck.  Building the farm system is supposed to be a continual process that does not have to come at the expense of building a solid major league ball club!  This is a big market team.  They can afford to do BOTH!  

Patience my TUSH!  Sign Edwin Jackson, keep Garza, sign Prince Fielder and trade for a leadoff man.  Need specifics - Ozzie Guillen has been tampering with Carlos Zambrano all off season - send Z to Miami for Bonifacio and then start Emilio in LF.   Eat Soriano's contract if you have to and you'll have a competative team in the NL Central. 

That doesn't mean you can't still do the right things to build the franchise, but don't dare to tell us to be patient!  You hire the best instructors you can get for the minors; the best talent and CyberMetric analysts as you can to identify young talent and keep doing it for as long as you can.  If you're going to make moves to bolster the system do it before the trade deadline when you can get the most from clubs in the running - not during the Hot Stove when every prospect is looked upo as a can't miss. 

Andy McPhail was known for building a consistantly competative organization when he came to the North Side; Dallas Green was bringing a winning tradition from Philly; as were Leo Durocher and Dusty Baker.  So please - save the GNR references for someone that doesn't actually know who Carmon Fanzone; Jimmy Hickman are or which umpire JOBBED Milt Pappas out of a perfect game! 

Patience my TUSH!  It's been two/three generations!  That's right I said GENERATIONS!

Patience my TUSH!  The Marlins have won it all TWICE since their move from Montreal - and they don't have a fan base!

Patience my TUSH!  Chicago CUBS fans deserve better!

Richard Pryor?  Axl Rose?  Pah-leeze Matt,  Shut the hell up!  
 
SP        
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;     &
nbsp;     
      
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;     &
nbsp;     
      
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;     &
nbsp;    LineUp
Jackson       
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;     &
nbsp;     
      
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;     &
nbsp;     
      
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;    Bonifacio (LF)
Garza     
      
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;     &
nbsp;     
      
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;     &
nbsp;     
      
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;   DeJesus  (RF)
Dempster    &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;     &
nbsp;     
      
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;     &
nbsp;     
      
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;     &
nbsp;     
    Castro     (SS)
T. Wood     &
nbsp;     
      
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;     &
nbsp;     
      
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;     &
nbsp;     
      
;     &nbs
p;     Fielder    (1B)
R. Wells     
      
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;     &
nbsp;     
      
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;     &
nbsp;     
      
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     By
rd     &nb
sp;  (CF)
      
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;     &
nbsp;     
      
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;     &
nbsp;     
      
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;     &
nbsp;     
    Stewart&nbs
p;   (3B)
      
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;     &
nbsp;     
      
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;     &
nbsp;     
      
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;     &
nbsp;     
    Soto     &
nbsp;  (C)
      
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;     &
nbsp;     
      
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;     &
nbsp;     
      
;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;     &n
bsp;     &
nbsp;     
    Barney 
;    (2B)





Since: Jan 1, 2007
Posted on: January 2, 2012 8:15 am
 

Under new Cubs regime, patience is the word

Soriano and Fukudome made a combined $33.5 million last year.  Sori batted .244 and Fuku hit 8 more home runs than me.  If you're buying tickets to see that, I hope you got your moneys worth.

Doesn't matter their performance. The guy was acting like Soriano was traded away like Fukudome. It is one thing to not want a player that is no longer on the team. You are just an idiot and must think Soriano is like a car; pay for it for a few years and you don't make payments any more. But hey, I guess that's what you all get for being Cubs; a delusional attitude. Because every year, you think it is "your" year. Ha! Maybe in 2108.



Since: May 23, 2007
Posted on: January 1, 2012 5:28 pm
 

Under new Cubs regime, patience is the word

Always great to see an idiot sports reporter like - - display is opinion and not the facts. Just like that other idiot Freeman.
The Cubs exercised the contract to keep Aramis, Aramis did not. Thats why he is not a Cub now. Snyder your a real moron, try being objective and truthful when reporting, it does wonders ~




Since: Jan 31, 2007
Posted on: January 1, 2012 2:34 pm
 

Under new Cubs regime, patience is the word

The Lord has reviewed the past 100 years, and has decided we Cub fans have not been punished enough !



Since: Mar 6, 2011
Posted on: January 1, 2012 1:49 pm
 

Under new Cubs regime, patience is the word

No problem - Any team can have a bad century.


The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com