Speeding Up the Rebuild Through Trades

For the past couple of years, the Cubs have been all about acquiring talent to bolster their farm system. With prospects like Javier Baez, Mike Olt, Kris Bryant, Arismendy Alcantara, Kyle Hendricks, Jake Arrieta and Junior Lake likely playing roles on the big league roster during the upcoming season, this year figures to be one of transition for the team. Once the core is established, it will be time for the front office to start trading from the farm system to acquire some Major League ready pieces to help accelerate the team’s rebuilding phase. Let’s take a look at some trades Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer have made in the past.

Theo Epstein – Boston Red Sox
  • Traded with: Arizona Diamondbacks – November 28, 2003
  • Sent: LHP Casey Fossum, RHP Brandon Lyon, LHP Jorge De La Rosa
  • Received: Curt Schilling

We start with this trade because it sums up the direction that the Cubs will need to go in to add a top arm to a system that has some interesting names, but nothing (at the moment) that wows you. Epstein turned two intriguing young pitchers and a solid bullpen arm into a 36-year old pitcher coming off recent all-star seasons to pair with Pedro Martinez. As with any trade, you have to wait a few years to find out the impact and this one turned out to be a steal. Former top prospect Fossum never was able to live up to his promise and bounced around to a number of teams, finally retiring in 2009. Lyon who signed with the team as a free agent the year prior has made a nice living as a middle bullpen arm pitching to 4.16 career ERA over 12 seasons. De La Rosa had a rough start to his Major League career always having the stuff but never the results, but finally put it together the past couple of season for the Rockies. As we know trades are all about risks, but the bet paid off and the Red Sox won the World Series in 2004 and 2007 and compiled winning records in the four seasons Schilling pitched for them. He compiled a 17.8 WAR, 53-29 record and 3.99 ERA in the regular season and a 6-1 record and 3.28 ERA in the postseason when it counted.

Jed Hoyer – Boston Red Sox
  • Traded with: Florida Marlins – November 24, 2005
  • Sent: RHP Jesus Delgado, RHP Harvey Garcia, RHP Anibal Sanchez, SS Hanley Ramirez
  • Received: RHP Josh Beckett, 3B Mike Lowell, RHP Guillermo Mota

Granted, the Red Sox had won a World Series in 2004, the team was in a much different place than the Cubs are now. The reason to look at this trade is that it shows that Hoyer is willing to give up a lot to make a team better. Hoyer made the trade in Epstein’s place as he was in the midst of a contract dispute. Ramirez was ranked as high as the #10 prospect by Baseball America and lived up to that billing in spades becoming one of the top shortstops in all of baseball the past few seasons. Shortstop has also been a position that the Red Sox haven’t really been able to fill since. Sanchez was a top 10 prospect for the Red Sox at the time and has been somewhat inconsistent in his career, but has really turned it on the past couple of years with the Tigers. Garcia and Delgado ended up being throw-ins as Delgado hurt his arm and never recovered and Garcia managed to pitch just 12.1 innings in the majors. On the Red Sox side, Josh Beckett won 20 games in 2007 enroute to the Red Sox second World Series championship in three years as well as compiling an 89-58 record with a 4.17 ERA and a 8.0 K/9 in his career with the team. Lowell filled a hole at third and in the middle of the lineup and hit .290/.346/.468 in five seasons. Mota did not throw a pitch for the team and was instead flipped three months later to the Indians with others for C Josh Bard, OF Coco Crisp and RHP David Riske. It’s hard to believe, this trade is almost a push, but it can be argued that the Red Sox may have been just as successful with Ramirez slugging in the lineup and Sanchez pitching as Beckett and Lowell were.

Theo Epstein – Boston Red Sox
  • Traded with: Cleveland Indians – July 31, 2009
  • Sent: RHP Bryan Price, LHP Nick Hagadone, RHP Justin Masterson
  • Received: C Victor Martinez

As we’ve seen with the Matt Garza deal the Cubs made last season, teams can be desperate at the deadline when a potential championship on the line and Epstein was no different giving up three young pitchers for a middle of the order bat. Martinez played a season and half for the Sox and put up nice numbers with a slash line of .313/.368/.497 with 28 home runs and 120 RBI, but it didn’t move the needle much as the Red Sox were swept in the ALDS in 2009 and failed to make the playoffs the next year. Price and Hagadone have shown good stuff in the minors, but haven’t really made the impact that Justin Masterson has for Cleveland. Masterson is one of the better young arms in the AL and arrived last season with 195 strikeouts, three shutouts and a 3.45 ERA. Although the Red Sox boast impressive starting pitching depth, he would look great on a staff with Jon Lester and Clay Buchholz.

Theo Epstein – Boston Red Sox
  • Traded with: San Diego Padres – December 6, 2010
  • Sent: OF Eric Patterson, OF Reymond Fuentes, RHP Casey Kelly, 1B Anthony Rizzo
  • Received: 1B Adrian Gonzalez

This trade is a unique one as Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer ended up trading with each other to get this deal done. Being familiar with the system, Hoyer tried to make the best of a bad situation that saw San Diego without the money to sign Gonzalez long term. Epstein jumped at the opportunity to get one of the game’s premier sluggers and gave up some quality young players in return. Gonzalez only lasted a season in a half with the team and was shipped out in a salary dump trade with the Dodgers. Nevertheless, Gonzalez was a solid bat who never hit below .300. At the time, Kelly was deemed an untouchable asset in the Red Sox system and was the headline prospect in this deal. Unfortunately, Kelly underwent Tommy John surgery last season, but is still considered a top five prospect in the Padres’ system. Fuentes, a speedy outfielder has also yet to make it to the big leagues, but profiles to be a fourth outfielder if he ever does. Rizzo was a slugging prospect and Gonzalez’s likely replacement, but he struggled during a call-up and was also shipped out. This trade is still to be determined depending on how the Padres’ return fares in the majors, but it could turn out to be a win.

Jed Hoyer – Chicago Cubs
  • Traded with: San Diego Padres, January 6, 2012
  • Sent: RHP Andrew Cashner, OF Kyung Min-Na
  • Received: 1B Anthony Rizzo, RHP Zach Cates

I included this trade because it stands to be a defining one for the organization. Hoyer went to his former team and traded one of the Cubs’ few young players for one of theirs. Cashner was an exciting young arm for a pitching starved organization, but had frustrated fans and team brass alike with his inability to stay healthy. By the same token, Rizzo had done the same for the Padres as he put up great numbers in the minors, but flopped on his face in his first call to the majors. Both guys had questions and therefore made the perfect trade. Since then, Cashner has still struggled to stay healthy, but produced a 10-9 season with a 3.09 ERA, and 128 strikeouts in 175 innings last year. Rizzo similarly struggled through last season showing an early penchant for not being able to hit lefties, but he still managed 23 home runs and 80 RBI for an awful team last season and has shown the ability to hit better in the past. Whichever player makes the greatest leap this season may determine who was the winner in this trade, but right now it seems like a wash.

As you can see from the above trades, Epstein and Hoyer are not afraid to trade young players for established ones. Although each trade showed varying results, it can be argued that Epstein and Hoyer did what they thought were best for the team and were willing to give up top guys to get the best possible return. With the Cubs still building up their farm system, it’s likely that many of the young guys we hear about and are excited to see at the Major League level could find themselves like Hanley Ramirez and shipped out for the best established talent available. If that’s the case, it stands to be an exciting couple seasons as Cubs fans moving forward.

Follow ChicagoCubsOnline on Twitter: @TheCCO and @TheCCO_Minors 

Quote of the Day

"A successful man is one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks others have thrown at him." - David Brinkley
Share on Fancred
  • Pingback: Speeding Up the Rebuild Through Trades - Cubs Chronicles

  • BillyFinT

    Amendment: Some of the other trades Hoyer made as a Friar VP:

    http://espn.go.com/dallas/mlb/story/_/id/6821270/san-diego-padres-mike-adams-texas-rangers-robbie-erlin-joe-wieland

    Comment: Really good one. Adams had one continuation of his strong relieving years–in fact, less than half a season with the Arlington balpark, then was never as good again.

    Robbie Erlin and Joe Wieland were both serviceable pitchers and at less than 24 years old, the Pad made good investment towards the future.

    http://sports.espn.go.com/boston/mlb/news/story?id=5890951

    C: Brilliant. AGon was never that brilliant Friar as many remembered. He’s above average, but not living up to the hype for the promised Land. Of course, the Bosox won it all without him. Thus is life in sports business.

    http://bleacherreport.com/articles/786673-mlb-san-diego-padres-cameron-maybin-trade-is-paying-dividends

    C: The writer said it all, or not? It’s mixed review. Mujica took two more years to become who he is right now, with the help of the EXCEPTIONALLY SUPERIOR coaching of the Redbirds. Hey, when everyone’s a pro and walking that thin line, sometimes it just takes a “click” to make it happen. I’ll say it’s a mediocre turn out against Jed.

    Alright, the rest you can google. This is not my thesis. What I can conclude to boot: Hoyer was a good GM. He sure is still wand-ing that magic. I don’t think he got that Midas Touch to haul unknown prospects into star player trade, or aged veteran into underrated prospects, but this is a good Cubbie streaming Blue into the system, a system overturned as the worst in Major now one of the top-s.

  • Tony_H

    I have no doubt that they will trade for at least one SP at some point using the depth of the farm system.

  • cubtex

    Look at those arms Theo and Jed have traded. Masterson, Sanchez and Cashner. Jeez

    • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

      Look at the players they got in return too. Jeez

      • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

        Schlling and Beckett too. Couple decent arms. Both helped Theo get rings.

      • cubtex

        Cashner for Rizzo= bad trade. Hanley Ramirez and Anibal Sanchez for Beckett= horrendous trade justin Masterson for 1/2 season of Victor Martinez= terrible trade and all those prospects for AGon(who they had to dump to the Dodgers) = another bad move. These trades don’t exactly show how brilliant they are:))))))

        • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

          Very surface look at those trades. You have to look at what they wanted out of them. I won’t dissect them all. I pretty much agree with all of Neil’s ratings.

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            Just will point out that Lowell came with Beckett. The 2nd WS isn’t in Boston without that trade. So again, it depends on what you’re needing. At some point we’ll have to make a trade similar to that when we’re close and need a player or two to put us over the top.

            I thought you didn’t like trading proven players for unproven prospects? By the standards you hold Theo to now you should have loved all those trades your bashing.

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            Ray this is one of those comments where your bias is so clear it undermines your point. You have a double standard with Theo. When he gets prospects for proven you hate it but when he gets proven for prospects you hate that too.

            Admit it Ray, you just hate Theo :)))))

          • cubtex

            Would you be happy if the Cubs traded Baez and CJ Edwards for lets say David Price at this stage of his career? Let’s say Baez and CJ Edwards are very similar to Hanley and Sanchez. No… I am sure you wouldn’t think so.

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            If we were postseason bound and Price went on to be a part of a World Series I would sleep soundly over that trade. Just as I’m sure Sox fans did when the got Schilling then Beckett and Lowell.

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            You have to give to get. As you always say te best trades are where both sides win. The Schilling trade was a fleecing but there were still good prospects included. The others all give each team what they needed.

          • JasonPen

            …. If the end result is a world series… looking back it would be very worth it.

          • Chris K.

            Don’t you mean me?

        • Sanibelchuck

          This is Monday morning quarterbacking at its best. It shows that past results are not always indicative of future results. Will never forget trading Lou B. for Ernie B. He was a 20 game winner.

          • cubtex

            I hate trades that give up the teams best young pitching and not getting pitching back in return. That is a staple of Hoyer and Theo. Look at his track record. He needed a 170 mil payroll to put a winner on the team.
            Look at what Hendry did to aquire a 3rd baseman and 1st baseman. That is the type of trade you should do for position players.

            Bobby Hill for ARam
            Hee Seop Choi for D Lee

          • Tony_H

            How many rings for the guy you are defending versus the guy you say makes bad move after bad move?

          • cubtex

            come up with new material Jerry Krause

          • Tony_H

            Right after you do :)

            By the way 2-0

            I’ll take the guy with the rings.

        • John_CC

          Seriously? You are so inconsistent I would almost call it hypocritical.

          Hanley and A Sanchez for Beckett, I would agree would be a horrendous trade. Fortunately for me I don’t have to agree because you blatantly left out Mike Lowell and Mota=Josh Bard, Riske, Coco Crisp.

          So in reality, they traded 4 prospects for 3 major leaguers. Beckett was 25 and heading toward his prime, which worked out well in 2007 when he has 20-7 with a 3.25 ERA in the AL East, then went 3-0 with and ERA under 2.00 in the playoffs and WS.

          HORRENDOUS!

          I though you wanted your team’s GM to go for the best players to not rely on prospects? The Red Sox were on the verge, made the necessary moves and WON The World Series!

          But you think the smarter to have done was hold onto all their prospects and WAIT a couple years till they might make a difference on the big league team. That is so consistent with your rants these days isn’t it?

          • cubtex

            haha. how do you really feel? I am very consistent. You should see me on the golf course and my 5K race times. Like clockwork!

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            He has a point though in this Ray. When Theo trades a proven player for prospects it’s idiotic and when with the Sox he traded prospects for guys that helped win rings you hate that too. There is a serious contradiction there.

          • John_CC

            Not worth it, BR. Might as well reason with your coffee table.

          • cubtex

            is that another insult? you are pretty consistent too. Like clockwork with your little insults. I love it!

          • Scott

            Cubtex,
            It would be nice if you would respond to the issue at hand and not try to smokescreen everyone on this issue. You have a problem with Theo trading “proven major leaguers” for “prospects” – you rail Theo for that consistently and constantly. But then you are also slamming him on trades where he traded “prospects” for “proven major leaguers” – and then won multiple World Series titles.
            You can’t have it both ways.

          • cubtex

            Hi Scott. 2 different scenarios. This team is not trying to win. He is trading for prospects now because he is not looking to improve the mlb roster.

          • Scott

            So in “not trying to win”, trading what quality pieces we have for younger pieces that could be part of our future when we “plan” to win is wrong, and when “trying to win” and trading prospects for quality pieces that actually get you over the top and WINNing the World Series is also wrong?
            Cool.. Thank you for clarifying your stance. Seems like there is very little that Theo could do that would actually be deemed a positive move in your eyes.

          • cubtex

            Did I say the plan will not work? It is a small market rebuild that I have continued to say would one day eventually work. It is a slow painful way to bring a winner to one of the biggest and greatest cities in the world. I never said “wrong” It is the right way to rebuild for a small market team.

          • cubtex

            and to clarify. To make a trade to help them win a WS is not wrong. But IF you give up your top prospects who turn out to be great players…it is not this brilliant trade. The AGon trade did not do that. The Victor Martinez trade did not do that. The Beckett trade did…but what they gave up was pretty painful…wouldn’t you agree. If the Cubs traded Baez and CJ Edwards for a David Price and they won a WS(in theory it was a good trade because of the ultimate prize) BUT….IF Baez wins the HR crown and Edwards turns out be a 20 game winner…the price was significant and wasn’t a brilliant trade.

          • Scott

            I would agree that it would be a steep price to pay and one that would be difficult to watch as Baez and Edwards tore up the AL East. However, as you point out all the time, they are prospects and until they “make it”, they are nothing more. What if Edwards frame turns him into the “Juan Cruz light” and Baez never learns enough plate discipline at the ML level and flames out as quickly as he arrives while Price wins 3 NL Cy Young awards and the Cubs win the World Series?

          • cubtex

            exactly…but my point was that Hanley and Sanchez were far from suspects. They are excellent mlb players. If they trade Baez and Edwards and they both fizzle and you get a Price and win a WS. BRILLIANT trade. IF Baez and Edwards turn out to be perennial all stars and the Rays win a couple of WS with those 2 players leading the team….Is that brilliant???

          • Tony_H

            It’s called Win-Win!

          • cubtex

            disagree.

          • Tony_H

            Both teams win a World Series led by players in a trade with each other.

            Sounds like Win-Win to me.

          • cubtex

            but the Rays won more than 1 in my example. What IF the Cubs had held onto both of those players and won multiple WS instead of the 1? That is my point

          • Tony_H

            In other words, even if Theo leads the Cubs to a World Series victory you will find fault in what he did.

          • cubtex

            now why would you say something like that???? LOL. I said that of course the team won a WS with a trade(which is a great thing) but IF the players they gave up turn out to be ALL Stars and help out another team win multiple WS it is not a brilliant trade. WS= Awesome. Trading perennial ALL Stars who lead another team to multiple WS to get there is not a win win.

          • cubtex

            going to get in a quick 9. Talk to you later. Got to enjoy this 80 degree day! Enjoyed the discussion.

          • Tony_H

            We have hit around 50 the last 2 days. High School baseball games are scheduled to start on the 24th, hope the snow is gone by then.

          • paulcatanese

            If the Cubs didn’t win in four straight, I would be upset:)

          • cubtex

            Haha

          • cubtex

            We disagree on trades in general. You thought the Garza trade was great for the Rays no matter what they got back in return because you felt Hellickson was a better pitcher and cheaper(boy did that turn out to be wrong) You said that the return the Rays got did not matter. I feel as if anytime you have a trade chip you should maximize the return no matter what the circumstances are.

          • Tony_H

            I am not going down this road again, but you are drastically misquoting my position.

          • cubtex

            we won’t but you have looked at the archives recently. look what you said.

          • Tony_H

            We talked about it a few hundred times. I will take a pass.

          • Tony_H

            I really don’t want to go down this again, but (that’s how it usually starts) I wanted to compare just Hellickson to Garza for you.

            Garza WAR
            2011 2.8
            2012 1.2
            2013 1.4
            Total 5.4 WAR Not bad

            Hellickson
            2011 3.8
            2012 3.2
            2013 -0.8
            Total 6.2 WAR A little better

            Plus Hellickson is about to turn 27.

          • John_CC

            LOL! A Championship doesn’t count as a “win” now?!

            This is insane.

          • cubtex

            An insane inconsistent hypocritical coffee table. I like that! So I guess you are saying there is no price too high for a WS? So trading Bryant Baez Edwards and Almora who all end up having very good and long careers for 2 35 year old pitchers and win a WS would be a “win” in your eyes?

          • Scott

            One thing that I think that you also need to consider is the new CBA and the severe limitations it imposed the second Theo took over. You continually slam Theo for a “run-of-the-mill small market rebuild”, but with the new CBA, there are much tighter restrictions. You cannot throw 25 million at people in the draft and throw unlimited money at every international free agent anymore. There are incredibly tight restrictions on the draft that have limited what the baseball operations department have been able to do. These things have considerably slowed the process and have made people impatient because we have not gone out and signed every available free agent on the market just to win an extra 10 games. Your idea of what a “rebuild” is needs to be framed in the context of what this current CBA entails. This is not a the same rebuild as people have done for decades (and if it was that easy, why doesn’t everyone just do it that way?). With the new CBA, to build a successful franchise, a team will need to scout incredibly well so they can draft the best possible draft class every year. They will need to scour the international market and have as much information on those players as possible to know which players are worth the risk. They will need to have a plan to develop their players in the minor leagues to make sure that they are getting the most out of those players and help them rise through the system as quickly as possible. There needs to be a comprehensive ML scouting department to look at other teams players at the ML level as well as the minors so that if/when trades are made, they know who will most likely have the most impact in the Cubs system. THAT is how it will need to be done in this new CBA. You see a small market rebuild because we don’t sign the Pujols/Hamilton/Tanaka/Darvish crop of FA, but this is a SMART large market rebuild because they have poured million after million into developing an organization that was decades behind the times to put in af the forefront in every area that is important for the lasting health of an organization. All of the scouting and developement done all over the world are not “flashy” moves, but will make a much greater impact over time than signing an overpriced FA.

          • cubtex

            You are right. The CBA restrictions changed everything.I understand tanking for a couple of years due to the restrictions. They are year 3 of tanking. Time to build up the mlb team…wouldn’t you say?

          • Tony_H

            Without buying players up, you have to wait for the players in your system to come up and then fill in around them, not the other way around. If now is the time just because it has been 2 off-seasons, then they my as well of been buying FA’s from the beginning.

            No cookies for you!

          • cubtex

            do you have a list of Theoism’s written on your office wall? lol

          • Tony_H

            Common sense is easy to recite :)

          • cubtex

            When the CBA limitation went into effect…they could have speeded up the process tremendously by signing the Darvish’s,Ryu,Puig,Cespedes instead of Soler.
            That is where I fault him. I agree he needed to tank for a couple of years because of the CBA now which he has done but they could have filled the roster with better trade pieces instead of the DeJesus’ and Schierholtz’s as well. Look at what the positional players have brought back in trades since Theo took over. Nada!

          • cubtex

            He is trading proven players for prospect now because they are not trying to win. I am fine with that. They are losing on purpose to get 1st round picks. Red Sox were trying to win…Cubs aren’t. 2 totally different scenarios.

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            “Losing on purpose.” I always love that one.

          • cubtex

            If they are not losing on purpose he is the worst GM in the history of the Cubs :)

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            The plan has been to acquire prospects yes, somewhat at the expense of the MLB team for a couple of seasons. It’s going about as he expected. Tear it down to build it back up. Theo would have been tickled to have won more games the past two years if they’d have done it with the guys they had. You say it like they’re scheming to toss games like the Black Sox or something. It’s a bigger picture.

          • cubtex

            Losing is part of the plan. What is so hard to see? Look at the 25 man roster he put together now for 3 years. You don’t honestly believe they are trying to win? I know you are extremely extremely optimisitc but cmon dude. Schierholtz,DeJesus,Sweeney,
            Valbuena as starters on a MLB team trying to win?

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            They’d love to win more. But they accept losses now as part of the long term greater good. They don’t set out to lose. Theo will draft wherever because the baseball draft is a crap shoot and he knows it.

          • cubtex

            that is 100% not true. The draft is no longer how it used to be where you can draft hard to sign guys late and give them top dollar. They are losing to get top 10 picks. They do not want to win more.

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            No

          • Ripsnorter1

            Exactly.

        • JasonPen

          Hey, it got them 2 world series rings….

    • Tony_H

      Look at the rings on their fingers. Jeez they are shiny!

      • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

        Yep, Theo has the rings and Hendry is unemployed. Hendry had a pretty high payroll if I remember too. And it is the essence of armchair quarterbacking. The dealt young pitching because that is what he had a wealth of. All that young pitching and tey still ha a World Series starting five and stayed competitive goig forward up to and including a World Series last year. Can’t argue with results although I know people will try.

        • cubtex

          Rider- He dealt young pitching because that is what he had a wealth of? Really? The only homegrown starting pitcher over the last 10 years with all that wealth of starting pitching is Buccholtz. Not so much of a wealth I would say.

        • cubtex

          Your bias for Theo clouds your judgement.

          Admit it Rider…Your love for Theo clouds your judgement on reality :)))

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            I can be critical of him. I just think I look at both sides of things and don’t let my personal feelings get in the way. I think he’s a great, proven GM. After reading Francona’s book I did grow to like him even more because of how much respect Francona and the players have for him.

            I admire humility and considering who Theo is and what he’s accomplished he’s very humble. He just acts like one of the guys and always wanted to be treated like everyone else. Also, he was always willing to take hits for Francona both in the media and with ownership. Just like Francona does for his players.

            I think Theo has made mistakes. I’ll admit in hindsight I wish we had Cashner. But at the time I liked the trade and wouldn’t have been surprised if Cashner never pitched again. Also, Vogel (Burt) bachrach, was still very far away and who knows if he’s the future at 1st base. Other than that there really hasn’t been one move as Cubs
            GM I didn’t support. Although I would have liked to see them go harder after Tanaka.

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            I think many of the deals he pulled were nothing short of miraculous given the situation. Getting anything for Soriano for one was great to me. I think most GM’s would have ended up releasing him.

            Theo has respect from other GM’s and they want to deal with him. As we see from the article he deals in trades where both sides get what they want. However given that Theo’s ended up with the rings it’s hard to not call him the winner.

            I don’t think anybody could do what he’s doing. His remake of the farm system in one season, I believe, will go down in baseball history as one of the finest managerial jobs ever. What he’s doing will be a blueprint for sustained success.

            And I think we’ll be better this season than expected. I hope for at least 10 more wins and think we’ll get them.

          • cubtex

            are you kidding. 18 mil for a guy who hit 30 HR’s and over a 100 RBI in back to back seasons for a 20th rank prospect is a miraculous trade? You think that Francona’s book is this unbiased detailed report on how others view Theo. Francona was paid by Theo and the Red Sox. Francona was hired by Theo. Do you think anyone who owes their career to a guy would dog him? You are extremely biased about anything Theo(just like you constantly say about me) You worship him. You don’t think any other gm could do what he has done? That is unhealthy Rider. He has lost more games in 2 years in Cubs history. He traded every asset for a prospect and got 2 and after this year 3 top 5 draft picks. Be a little realistic.

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            I don’t feel like debating the merits f te moves anymore. Obviously ou opinions differ.

            But most memoirs I’ve read have no problem bashing the people who hired then. Torre’s wasn’t real complimentary. Theo left the Sox in bad terms so the iwnser could care less what Francona said about him. Basically you’re just saying Francona is a liar and not willing to tell te truth. But he’s not the only one. From olayers to bat boys to groundskeepers the view in Theo is extremely favorable. But I’m sure they’re all liars too. Basically if someone says something bad about Theo you’ll believe it if its good you’ll say its a lie. That’s what fits your story. But really, nobody who ever worked for him as bad thigs to say.

          • cubtex

            You are now saying that I said Francona was lying. See how much your desire to defend anything and everything Theo gets escalated? Francona owes his career to Theo. Just like a guy who owes their career to a boss they admire in the business world. Francona and Theo are friends to this day. Do you honestly think he would say a bad word about a guy he is friends with? Consider the source.

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            So because the source is his friend and they worked together you’re saying Francona has fabricated a favorable image of him? Again, Francona isn’t the only one that describes him this way. Again more often than not these books come out and are the exact opposite. Whether Francona made it up and Theo is actually a tyrannical asshole or it’s true, either way it’s interesting that Theo has inspired so much loyalty from him. From basically everyone that has worked for him. That alone should say a lot.

            I know you won’t read the book because you don’t want to hear good things about Theo. But the nuances of the stories he tells and descriptions just sound to factual to me. Also a writer was with Francona on it. I don’t see him as being willing to put out material that isn’t verified.

          • cubtex

            Enjoy the day Rider. To me that is comparable to reading a book on Barrack Obama written by Joe Biden.

          • paulcatanese

            No politics, but classic, very good example:)

        • calicub

          I believe Hendry is currently a special assistant to Brian Cashman of the Yankees and has been since he was fired here.

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            Yeah, I knew that. Guess unemployed was the wrong word but same gist.

        • paulcatanese

          Hendry is not unemployed ( you got that one).
          But how can one compare GM’s unless they had an even playing field?
          Most GM’s know what they are doing (to a degree) but put the bucks and undeniable support that Ricketts has put forth and then judge who (anyone) is doing the better job.
          If they don’t produce under those circumstances, then they should be tarred and feathered.
          Millions were spent with Theo’s arrival from his salary, home,
          offices, employees, a five year contract, one could go on and on.
          Give the situation a break.

          • Tony_H

            Cmon Paul, JH could have spent his operating budget in those ways as well. He chose to have one of the smallest front offices and to not spend very often in the draft or IFA. JH did a lot of good things and got very close to where we want to be, but didn’t get us all the way there.

          • paulcatanese

            Could be Tony, but since I’m not privy to what those operating budgets were, I just go with what I see.
            Not saying that JH could have done better here, but I’ll never know.
            Just sayin, Theo is on a pedestal here, and he will make mistakes, as anyone would.

          • Tony_H

            Not exactly. We don’t know what the total baseball operating budget is then or now. But we know what JH spent on the MLB team and he could have redirected that money to the draft or IFA instead of Milton Bradley type signings.

          • cubtex

            one gm was under pressure to win EVERY year and one gm was given the power to rebuild and not be judged on wins and losses.

          • Tony_H

            We really don’t know what pressure was on him, whether it was to win or keep them competitive at the major league level to keep attendance up. We do know that Zell let him go on his spending spree to try and raise the value of the team to sell it. But before and during when Zell took over, I don’t believe he was under pressure to win, keep revenues and profits up, yes.

          • cubtex

            he did a good job for several years. Put together very good teams and they came pretty close. If the ball bounces differently they could have easily won one or 2. It could have easily worked out where Hendry won 2 WS and Theo won zero. You need a little luck. The Red Sox were down 3-0 and came back. You need a little luck in the postseason.

          • paulcatanese

            True, Bradley was a horrible pickup, thank goodness he was gone before Jackson got here.
            Both are done deals, period, both were bad deals, period.

  • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

    One thing to note in the trade Jed did with the Marlins was the intangible impact that Mike Lowell brought to the Red Sox. Tito raved about having him and the leadership he brought to the team. Said they wouldn’t have won the 2nd World Series without Lowell. He really helped counter Ramirez in many ways.

  • Zonk

    I’m sure I’ll get killed for saying this, but if you look at Hendry’s trading record, it was very good, IMO. The Pierre trade was bad, but I can think of several good trades he made. He had a knack for it.

    Hendry’s main sin, IMO, was leaving a bad farm system, his final draft in 2011 notwithstanding

    • RickinMSP

      I agree with you Zonk. Hendry really was good at the trade. His drafting and free agent signings on the other hand…

      • DWalker

        and development. Hendry had some good points, but he was far from a good GM. To be fair though, he also had more constraints than Theo and Jed and in my book less motivation from ownership to actually win as opposed to just get fans in the seats. No, I don’t miss him, but it is fair to say he was a pretty decent horsetrader.

    • Swish23

      Bad ??… Castro, Castillo, Lake, Vogelbach, Alcantara, Cashner, Smardz, Baez, Candelario, Maples, leMaheiu, Barney, Vitters, Blake Parker….. Not a bad farm; Theo just keeps saying it to look good. And JH was not allowed to lose on purpose 3 years straight or trade MLB players for prospects.

  • Tony_H

    Hey Chris, nice article and look at these trades. Next time try a subject that sparks a little debate on here.

    • cubtex

      hahaha