RedEye

What's after Girardi, and then after that?

There were all kinds of reasons to love Joe Girardi as the next Cubs manager.

He had local ties, of course, but his seven years running the Yankees to three division titles and a World Series provided the gravitas.

The Cubs wanted him. They were willing to write a big check. Girardi chose to stay in New York for family and other reasons.

So, the Cubs lost out on their first and best choice to replace Dale Sveum. But this is why Theo Epstein gets paid to be smart. This is when he gets paid to be smart.

Epstein and his bunch have spent several years trying to identify star players. Making the best of bad Cubs teams, Epstein, Jed Hoyer and Jason McLeod have stocked the system with great potential. There’s no guarantee, of course, but the Cubs haven’t looked this promising for a long time.

Now Epstein must identify the next star manager. He won’t be a star now. The hope is that he will be by the time Epstein’s scouting and development machine churns out product.

Whoever Epstein presents at a news conference will be a tough sell. It’s a long way down from Girardi to Next. But it won’t matter if Epstein’s choice proves to be a young player whisperer. That sounds like the way Epstein would go after saying the next manager will need to love his players before administering tough love.

Epstein also talked of leadership qualities, if not actual managerial experience. It sounds as if we should prepare for someone to learn the managing part of managing while on the job.

The new manager’s ability to develop talent has to come first. Players win. The running of a game expertly likely will come second, if it comes at all.

It’s early, and I could be wrong, but it feels like the candidates we know about fill a profile of another bridge manager like Sveum before Epstein hires the guy he expects to win. I don’t know who the next Cubs manager will be, but he probably won’t be as good as the guy who follows him.

Copyright © 2015, RedEye
Related Content
  • Genealogy gold mine: Millions of wills now online

    Genealogy gold mine: Millions of wills now online

    Thousands of amateur genealogists who fantasize about being left a fortune by a distant relative can now get a reality check. Starting Wednesday, upward of 100 million wills written over the last three centuries will be posted to Ancestry.com, the popular genealogical search engine.

  • Northerly Island Park opens Friday on Chicago lakefront

    Northerly Island Park opens Friday on Chicago lakefront

    Twelve years after former Mayor Richard M. Daley's "midnight raid" that shut down the small lakefront airstrip called Meigs Field, a new park will open Friday on the southern portion of what is now called Northerly Island, Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced Tuesday.

  • American recalls French train attack on Jimmy Fallon show

    American recalls French train attack on Jimmy Fallon show

    A California man who was one of three Americans who helped subdue a gunman on a high-speed train traveling to Paris says he couldn't have picked better people to be with that day.

  • Historic Gold Coast rowhouse for $1.375M

    Historic Gold Coast rowhouse for $1.375M

    855 N. Dearborn, Chicago $1,375,000 Listed on May 13, 2015 This historic three-bedroom, two-and-a-half-bath rowhouse is in the heart of Chicago's Gold Coast neighborhood. The three-story home has three decks, including a rooftop deck. The home also features hardwood flooring, central air conditioning...

  • Northerly Island Park: Beguiling lakefront landscape justifies Daley raid

    Northerly Island Park: Beguiling lakefront landscape justifies Daley raid

    A dozen years after Mayor Richard M. Daley carried out the infamous “midnight raid” that shut down the small lakefront airport called Meigs Field, the question lingers: Did the end justify the means?

  • 'A Walk in the Woods' is soft and mushy

    'A Walk in the Woods' is soft and mushy

    Because “A Walk in the Woods” quickly wanders from a funny look at life at a crossroads to an obvious series of embarrassing nonsense and basic observations about nature and people, let’s just rattle off some things bumbling around my head during the movie:

Comments
Loading
88°