Blog Entry

Cubs make it official: Dale Sveum is new manager

Posted on: November 17, 2011 12:03 am
Edited on: November 17, 2011 2:41 pm
Dale Sveum is in place as the new manager of the Chicago Cubs. The club made it official Thursday and will formally introduce him at a Wrigley Field news conference on Friday.

As the Red Sox prepared for an 11th-hour expansion of their managerial search, sources said late Wednesday night that the Cubs had offered their position to Sveum. By midday Wednesday, he had agreed to a three-year contract with a club option for a fourth to replace Mike Quade in the Cubs dugout as the Red Sox regrouped.

Sveum was brought back for a second interview by both the Cubs and the Red Sox as the two venerable franchises lurched toward Thanksgiving looking to fill managerial vacancies. He met with Boston's brass in Milwaukee, site of the general managers' and owners' meetings this week, a second time over lunch on Wednesday.

While there were growing indications in recent days that Sveum preferred the Cubs' job to that of the Red Sox, Boston officials acknowledged late Wednesday night that they will expand their search. Sveum had been the only candidate invited back for a second interview by the Red Sox.

Sveum, who was Boston's third-base coach in 2004 and 2005, will re-join new Chicago president Theo Epstein and GM Jed Hoyer as the Cubs look to dig out of the mess of a 91-loss season that left them fifth in the NL Central last summer.

Sveum has been on Milwaukee's coaching staff for the past six seasons, and has served as the Brewers' hitting coach for the past three seasons, and his choice could be viewed as odd given that Milwaukee twice bypassed Sveum when its own manager's job was open.

In 2008, during one of the strangest finishes to a season for a playoff team in memory, the Brewers fired Ned Yost and replaced him on an interim basis with Sveum with just 12 games remaining.

However, instead of making Sveum their full-time manager, general manager Doug Melvin instead hired veteran baseball man Ken Macha. Then, when he fired Macha following the 2010 season, Melvin hired Ron Roenicke.

Reasons? Back in '08, the Brewers weren't sure Sveum, now 47, was ready for a managerial gig. Plus, Melvin philosophically is not a fan of hiring interim managers. The Brewers still weren't convinced that Sveum was ready after the 2010 season.

They are now.

"I think Dale's ready to manage," Melvin said Wednesday afternoon. "He's well-prepared, organized and conscientious. He's someone the players will like."

Both the Cubs and Red Sox viewed Sveum as being ready. And the Brewers have only good things to say about a man who has been loyal throughout when others may have fled the organization after being bypassed for the full-time manager's job.

"It was a very unfortunate situation at the time," Sveum said when we talked in mid-September about his brief interim gig in '08 and his reasons for staying in Milwaukee afterward. "I only managed for 12 days and then the playoffs. It wasn't like I was there for three months or something. It wasn't the norm where you think you deserve the job."

He said in September that he still wanted to manage and thought, given the right situation, he was ready to do so.

The Cubs may not be perfect, but they're the right situation. While Boston's roster is far more talented, Sveum lives in the off-season in Scottsdale, Ariz., not far from the Cubs' spring training base in Mesa. Boston trains in Florida.

Also, as a rookie manager, because the Cubs are not expected to win in 2012, Sveum will not face the same pressure he would have faced in Boston. He will have time to get his feet under him and break into the job (though Cubs fans who suffered while Mike Quade did the same in 2011 surely will not want to hear that).

During Sveum's 12-year major-league playing career, he spent time in Milwaukee (five seasons), Philadelphia, Chicago (White Sox), Oakland, Seattle, Pittsburgh and New York (Yankees). A cousin of former big leaguer John Olerud, Sveum managed Double-A Altoona in Pittsburgh's organization from 2001 through 2003 before joining the Red Sox coaching staff.

Since: Nov 16, 2011
Posted on: November 18, 2011 1:21 pm

Cubs make it official: Dale Sveum is new manager

saosine You are a hundred percent wrong , Epstein did not trade for Beckett , he walked out in his famous gorilla suit on halloween ,(for his month retirement ) because he wanted more power than Larry Luccino and money , the trade for Beckett and Lowell was made by Cherington and Epstein had made it clear he would not have made that trade and without that trade the Sox would not have won the 07 championship

Since: Aug 16, 2009
Posted on: November 18, 2011 12:09 pm

Cubs make it official: Dale Sveum is new manager

dryan659, Sveum does have major league experience.  There's a reason why Sandberg isn't finding Major League work.  If he was that revered, he'd be hired on somewhere in some platform.  You're not wiser than those paid to make these decisions.

Since: Aug 16, 2009
Posted on: November 18, 2011 12:05 pm

Cubs make it official: Dale Sveum is new manager

Dude, he traded for Schilling and Beckett.  Drew was a vital piece.

Since: Apr 17, 2007
Posted on: November 18, 2011 10:10 am

A team that can't get out of the way of itself.

It was brilliant when they passed over Sandberg in favor of Quade. Worked well.
Brilliant when they got rid of Grace for Hee Chop Soy. Grace went on to win a Series.
That's just scratching the surface of what these knuckleheads are.

The Cubs, my childhood beloved Cubs, are the biggest collection of fools the League has seen, mabe ever.
Sandberg needs to move on. Grace did.

Since: Jan 23, 2007
Posted on: November 18, 2011 2:51 am

Cubs make it official: Dale Sveum is new manager

Farm rankings mean nothing. I spent four years working as a PR Director for minor league teams, and I'd get a call every year asking what I thought of certain players. Not only did my opinion not matter, but it was also quite unqualified. Yet, a lot of what I said ended up in Baseball America. Go figure...

As for Epstein's time in Boston - Schilling was acquired via trade for prospects ... and Beckett was acquired via trade for prospects in a deal worked out by Jed Hoyer. Both trades are examples of a farm system working. Guys in the Red Sox farm system had value around the league, and the Red Sox traded those players for established players. End result: Schilling and Beckett teamed to win a World Series in 2007.

As for guys like Dice-K, Drew and Lugo - yea. Those were bad signings. But that's the price to play when you're in the American League East. The Red Sox would rather pay a guy to suck for them than take the chance he could be great for the Yankees. There's no such situation in the National League Central, and as such, I don't expect the Cubs to get into bidding wars with the Yankees just for the sake of keeping a guy from signing with New York.

Since: Feb 5, 2007
Posted on: November 17, 2011 10:43 pm

Cubs make it official: Dale Sveum is new manager

Um, cap room? There isn't a salary cap in MLB. Luxury tax, but no salary cap.

Since: Jan 30, 2011
Posted on: November 17, 2011 9:15 pm

Cubs make it official: Dale Sveum is new manager

You ever think they do not want anyone from tne past Cub culture to come in as manager. Someone from the outside to realistically judge the talent of the players. One of the problems with the Cub culture has been over valuing of their own players. We see this here as the Cub fans who are infected with the Cub culture over rate an icon such as Sandberg, or Greg Maddux for that matter. Being a great player does not translate to being a great manager. Managing in the minors is totally different than coaching or managing the egos on the MLB roster. That variable is not present in the minor leagues because they are working to get to the major leagues and develop their skills to receive the big money.

Since: Nov 12, 2006
Posted on: November 17, 2011 7:37 pm

Cubs make it official: Dale Sveum is new manager

If Sandberg is so hot as a managerial candidate, why hasn't another team hired him?  Or even offer him a coaching job?  Has Sandberg said "manager of nothing"?  Does finishing second to Mike Matheny say anything about Sandberg?  I don't think Ryne is the guy right now for the Cubs, possibly bench coach for a few years?

Since: Nov 20, 2006
Posted on: November 17, 2011 5:32 pm

Cubs make it official: Dale Sveum is new manager

Positive things like keep Hendry and ok a Quade hire?  I could be wrong but I think that most analysts have suggested that the Cubs farm system is currently positioned as one of the worst in MLB. 

Wasn't Epstein was quite dependent on free agency this past season and over the years as well. He was highly criticized this past season for highly paid free agents that did not perform (which sounds incredibly Hendry-ish). Schilling, Beckett, Dice-K, Drew, Lugo, etc., were all free agents on the 07 Sox championship team. The Red Sox spent about 40+ million more in payroll than the Cubs in 2007 but at least they weren't spending on stupid contracts like Soriano, Zambrano, Bradley, etc.

Since: Dec 23, 2008
Posted on: November 17, 2011 3:24 pm

Cubs make it official: Dale Sveum is new manager

Quade was under contract and was fired. He didn't need to be rehired. If you watched any of the Cubs this year you would have seen that Quade made some terrible managerial decisions. Epstein is nothing like Hendry, who was completely dependent of free agency. As for Ricketts, he has done only positive things since his arrival. The team was bad this year, but the Cubs had a very good draft last year and are inching closer to ridding Hendry's mega-contracts.

The Cubs are developing players and hopefully once the Soriano's of the team are gone they can afford to sign home grown talent for the long haul. Any Cubs fan love Ryne Sandberg, but they desired someone with MLB experience. Sveum may have only two interm stints, he has been coaching in the major leagues for almost ten years. I think it is a hire in line with the new direction of the Cubs. Go Cubs Go!

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