Ricketts to Meet with Tim Wilken

According to a report from Bruce Levine, Tom Ricketts will meet with scouting director Tim Wilken over the weekend of September 16 to discuss his future with the team. Wilken still has a year remaining on his contract.

According to Levine’s sources, Ricketts and Wilken will “discuss the state of the scouting department and his current contract status.”

As Levine pointed out, if the Cubs extend Tim Wilken’s contract then the new general manager will have two vital positions in place when he/she takes over.

Bruce Levine reported that Oneri Fleita’s contract extension is “structured creatively with buyouts and options to benefit both the team and the executive.” Levine mentioned if Tom Ricketts extends Wilken’s contract it would likely be structured the same way.

Stay Tuned …

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  • John G

    Sounds like TR is looking for a buttboy at GM. What top tier GM is going to say “Yes sir Mr. Boss. Whatever you want.”? Seems to me that a GM who is supposed to bring a winner to the North Side should have full freedom to do what he thinks is necessary without any interference from above. Otherwise its another blind squirrel looking for that nut.

  • Ryan7

    Well at least if the gm don’t want either one they can buy out their contacts, and replace them with who they want.

    • Ripsnorter1

      While we are at it, let’s buy out:

      Soriano
      Byrd
      Zambrano
      Dumpster
      QQuade
      Aram’s $2 million dollar buyout
      WIlken and Fleita
      Crane Kennedy

      That’s a lot of wasted cash, isn’t it?

  • Anthony

    There are several players in the Cubs system that were not bonus babies who are the best hitters. That is an indictment on the entire scouting system, not just the Cubs, but, the draft dollar investment warrants more opportunity for these players while the other ones get tossed aside as organizational guys.

    If MLB clubs threw away that “taint”, especially the Cubs, then we may see the crybaby “we haven’t won anything curse” fall by the wayside.

    Giving crazy money to unproven kids is a major factor in system failure. Deal with it, or change it, and they won’t change it. MLB baseball does NOT have the best available players.

    Give some of the Cubs scouts credit for backing their guys, the trench scouts, not the figureheads. Play the best players.

    • John G

      What are you saying Anthony? That Cubs Scouts are Cub Scouts instead of Eagles?

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Q4EMCRNWDPEYRVG6D3QTGQS5FM Darrell

      “Giving crazy money to unproven kids is a major factor in system failure.”

      In fact being near the bottom of draft spending has great hurt the Cubs system in the past.

      Giving crazy money to free agents has really hurt them.

  • Cheryl

    Hope there is an understanding in place in regard to Wilken and Oneri with a new GM. If Ricketts doesn’t have one in place, this may scare off potential candidates. Or, maybe a new GM is on board but not named. This can be looked at positively as Levine has, or negatively.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Richard-Hood/100000706523521 Richard Hood

      I take this as Bruce Levine trying to get ahead of a story. Nothing more, nothing less.

  • paulcatanese

    I dont think Rosenbum is going to be pleased with that move.

  • Dorasaga

    http://www.suntimes.com/sports/baseball/whitesox/7433947-417/white-sox-ken-williams-greg-walker-have-heated-confrontation.html

    Highlight:

    Williams said “I personally liked the swagger and the cock that he had
    of his wrists and the loading of his hands when he had the previous
    swing I spoke of.”

    Walker said “There’s an expiration date on all coaches and
    managers — and players.”

    Where’s the expiration date for Quade? And where’s the swagger and loading of hands for this Cubbie lineup?

    Maybe if Reindorf fires Kenny Williams, Mr. Ricketts will consider his hiring to accord with South Siders.

    • John_CC

      I’d like to see Ozzie on the North Side.

  • cubs1967

    huh……….he has a year left……..what is there to meet about lance briggs??

    if he is extended; after the wasted picks of grant johnson, josh vitters, tyler colvin and hayden simpson, all no 1 picks……then we don’t need a GM.  just let the duo of CraneTommy do the job; like they have so far by keeping pena, not promoting jackson, and not releasing Z when his 30 days are up.

    ricketts may be the dumbest baseball guy running a team ever!

    can anyone say 1 thing positive about this guy??

    no one who is a GM is gonna take this job when 2 of his 3 hires have been done for him. (god help us if quade has to stay….that would make 3 of 3).

    103 yrs and counting……………with momentum…………there is NO grace period.

    • Calicub

      Let’s see he has publicly stated that player developement/ scouting/ draft/international intrests will become a top and in the past year and a half I think we would all agree that. Yeah he’s made a lot of nonmoves but hey he dumped JH but had the insight to realize that despite Hendrys /istakes he was central to signing draft picks. This draft has been called the best in two decades for the cubs.

      Also I’m alright with extending these guys. The lone highlight of the cubs organization is the wealth of talent of ourminor league system. Sure Simpson was a reach but as I’ve said in previous posts this year should not be held against Colvin nor should amajority of player flops be blamed on them. We all know how pathetic the cubs are at introducing prospects to the major league level due to clogged spots and free agent flops.

  • Skeldor

    Have they done September call ups?

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Richard-Hood/100000706523521 Richard Hood

      Tuesday after the Triple A season is over is when a majority will happen.

      • Skeldor

        thanks i havent paid much attention to baseball this year……for obvious reasons LOL

  • Tony_Hall

    Not sure what the problem is here.  So what if he meets with Wilken, and extended Fleita.  They have outs, and IF a new GM, wants to make a change, so be it.  

    We don’t have all the facts.  Ricketts, might already have a handshake agreement for a GM, and these are moves they have discussed.  Maybe all of the candidates have said they would want to keep Fleita and Wilken.  Bottom line, we don’t know, and until a new GM is in place, can we really discuss, what that GM, will want or not want to do with the staff and players already here.

    • Schwimmer

      I read this blog regularly.  And, you are one of the sharpest observers of what is going with the CUBS.  I appreciate your observations.  I totally agree with your comments about Fleita’s extension.  

      Let’s give RICKETTS some credit.  He’s not stupid.  It is very easy to imagine that he said to Fleita:  “I think you’re great.  I want you.  The reality is that I am hiring a new GM.  So, I have to structure a deal with you that leaves an ‘out’ on your contract — in case, my new GM has other ideas of who he wants in this position.”  (And, if you are Fleita, you say:  “Sure…I totally understand.”How hard is that conversation to imagine?  Yet, a knucklehead like Steve Rosenbloom writes a disparaging column about Ricketts, that makes him look like a big idiot who has not even considered how retaining Fleita might play to a new a GM!  Too bad Rosenbloom only sees the “negative” side of Rickett’s actions.Ricketts made sure that Fleita didn’t get signed by the TIGERS.  And, that he’s got him “in place” for the new GM’s benefit.  That’s all.I will make my judgement on what kind of owner, RICKETTS is — when I see who the new GM is…and how much money he has available to sign some “key” free agents.  That will tell us a lot about whether he wants to win next year.So, until then, I say to my fellow CUB fans…stay classy and give Tom RICKETTS a little respect for being a smart businessman and a big CUB fan.  I believe he’ll choose a great GM.  I’d love for it to be Billy Beane.  I’ve lived in the San Francisco Bay area…and, I can tell you that he’s a fabulous choice.

      The only reason Beane hasn’t been more successful in the past few years is because, of course, he has no money to sign or retain great players — and, the very players he “use to” hire — are now being hired by about 10 other teams.  That means, that his “pool” of great “sabermetric” picks are being scouted and signed by everyone else.  The “secret” of how he put together a “competitive” team on “no budget” is out!!!

      Once he has a payroll to work with…he will bring a championship team to the CUBS!!!

    • John_CC

      You’re always so sensible, Tony.

      But then what are we all going to complain about in the interim!!!

      I think one of the worst things that could happen for Cubs fans would be brilliant GM, great manager and 100 win season…because everything would be right and we would all be so wrong.

      • Ripsnorter1

        Well, John, we all know one thing FOR SURE:

        It ain’t a gonna happen. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Richard-Hood/100000706523521 Richard Hood

    Why does everyone assume that Miles is on the money of what the meeting is even about other than end of year stuff? Has been before the curve in anything this year? He said that Hendry was here for his contact the day before they announce he was fired.

    People should be holding these supposed “insiders” to a higher standard. Why are we believing a word coming out of any of there “sources”. Lets assume they are all wrong until we get an actual quote from one of the parties involved. It is obvious speculation and conjecture when you use words like “from my sources” and “may happen”.

    I saw last week that we already signed Billy Beane and his top assistant to take over the GM’s seat when Kenny’s contract is up and Beane moves up. Does that mean it is true? No. Actually I doubt that it is anything more than a guys speculation but it right now is as truthful as Miles’s column. Lets wait to see if it happens before we even worry about what it means to the GM search or anything else.

    • paulcatanese

      Richard I agree totaly with you on this. Those “beat reporters” are running around trying to get something in print that makes them look good and they throw enough out there hoping something will stick.
      Ricketts apppears far too smart to let that happen and probably enjoys all of it, knowing what he will do and what these guys are writing. I agree with the way he is signing people to keep them from other teams now, he is just protecting his investment. If the new GM come in and dosent want them he has the option of letting them go. I dont see the difference between them and players that may be let go.
      Just cant wait what poison Rosebum will put out there. That guy is a piece of work, needs to learn a more intelligent vocabulary.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Richard-Hood/100000706523521 Richard Hood

        I think that a lot of this stuff has to do with Kaplan being right on the money on Hendry. Everyone else is now playing catchup to be taken as seriously as we now should be taking what Kaplan for Comcast Sports Net says. He now has the sources that have proved accurate. That is until the next time he screws something up or he gets caught off guard.

        • studio179

          Having your brother working in the Cubs front office doesn’t hurt.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Richard-Hood/100000706523521 Richard Hood

    OK I waited to talk about this till it became official other than mentioning it in other peoples comments as one of many reasons why it is a better idea for it to work out this way.

    Brett Jackson is going to be offically announced on Team USA for the Pan Am games instead of getting called up or playing in the AFL. From what has been said behind the scenes this was HIS CHOICE. I my self think that this is an honor beyond any other accolade you can get in baseball. Representing your country in international competition is special.

    On a side note I have a HS student that tried out for the U17 team this summer and I just wanted to take a second and tell him how proud I am of his dedication to a sport he loves (knowing he he reads this site). Don’t give up Kev. You got the talent, just keep working and the world will see you on that stage very soon buddy.

    • RickinMSP

      I totally agree with his decision.  The opportunity to rest his hand for a couple of weeks, then play for Team USA in the Pan Am Games versus 15 at bats at the Major League level seems like an easy decision to me.  The majors will be there in the spring while the opportunity to represent his country in an international tournament may never come his way again.  Good luck to Brett and I hope it’s an experience he never forgets.