Cubs Ask Permission To Speak With Epstein

The Cubs have asked the Red Sox for permission to speak with GM Theo Epstein, according to Dan Shaughnessy of the Boston Globe. The Red Sox held meetings at Fenway Park today regarding their response to the Cubs' request, according to Shaughnessy. Epstein is under contract through 2012, so the Red Sox would have to grant permission to the Cubs if Epstein is indeed interested in the Cubs' open GM job. In the event that the Cubs try to hire him, the Red Sox will likely ask for compensation.

Epstein has led the Red Sox to two World Series championships since taking over Boston's baseball operations department in the fall of 2002, but Boston's fans currently seem more concerned about this year's late-season collapse than Epstein's past successes. MLBTR's Tim Dierkes examined Epstein's history of building starting rotations earlier today.

61 Responses to Cubs Ask Permission To Speak With Epstein Leave a Reply

  1. Brian DeVenne 4 years ago

    good, he can help reverse their curse, and then sign guys like jd drew ad john lackey to terrible deals and be forced out of there too

    • East Coast Bias 4 years ago

      Too late. They already have Soriano and Zambrano.

  2. bosoque 4 years ago

    Why would they have to grant permission?

    • EarlyMorningBoxscore 4 years ago

      Because he is still under contract for 1 more season. 

    • MaineSox 4 years ago

      “Epstein is under contract through 2012″

    • NomarGarciaparra 4 years ago

      Because ownership may want change, and in addition, they will most likely be compensated if Epstein leaves.

    • bosoque 4 years ago

      I was reading it wrong. I thought it meant that the sox would HAVE to, as some contract clause that he couldn’t be denied seeking a long term contract when he has only a year left or something dumb like that.

  3. EarlyMorningBoxscore 4 years ago

    Ben Cherington will be the Sox new GM before long…

  4. Because hes under contract

  5. iamsynecdoche 4 years ago

    Maybe they’ll sign him, and as compensation the Sox can make them take Lackey, too.

  6. zeles 4 years ago

    yea I’d be willing to give up epstein if the cubs eat up all of crawford and lackeys contracts

    • StanleyHudson 4 years ago

      Crawford and Lackey’s contracts!? Why don’t the Cubs save the U.S. the trouble and bail us out of debt instead.

      But seriously, Crawford will be better next season. Book it.

      • jayrig5 4 years ago

        As a Cubs fan, I’d be fully in favor of seeing what Lackey could do in the NL Central.  But, I’m probably not speaking rationally, having just spent a season watching James Russell, Rodrigo Lopez, Ramon Ortiz, Casey Coleman, and Doug Davis start a combined 49 games.  That kind of torture can do some damage.

        • StanleyHudson 4 years ago

          Well what is John Lackey these days if not a big pot of James Russell, Rodrigo Lopez, Ramon Ortiz, Casey Coleman, and Doug Davis soup?

        • BlueCatuli 4 years ago

          For the record, James Russell was pretty solid out of the bullpen. Hard to be upset with his performance after the switch.

          • baseball52 4 years ago

            +1 for noticing the change and not just having it blend into the blur of non-Castro/Garza suckiness that was this season.

          • BlueCatuli 4 years ago

            Have to find the bright spots. The Cubs have two solid left handed options in Marshall and Russell. They are quietly building a homegrown dependable bullpen that will pay off once they are competitive again, and could net them pieces via trade.

          • jayrig5 4 years ago

            Yeah, I’m well aware.  It’s because he’s a reliever.  And he’ll be a solid second lefty to Marshall next year.

            But he never should have started.  It was unfair to put him out there, to be honest, and it was impressive that he was able to readjust to the bullpen role and do well.

            As a starter, however, he was awful.  

      • johnsilver 4 years ago

        Sounds good since the trouble we are in came from chicago anyway.

    • You have no choice. He’s already gone.

    • I will take Carl Crawford as a Cubs fan. The last season was an anomaly.

    • Hoosierdaddy92 4 years ago

      Fine, I wouldn’t mind Chicago taking on Carl Crawford and John Lackey’s contract. But in return, Boston takes Soriano and Zambrano’s contracts. Go ahead and throw Dice-K in there too. It would be interesting to see how Dice-K pitched in the NL for a year. Lackey also might thrive in a change of scenery. Lackey was interested in playing for the Cubs before. Crawford would be tons better defensively and hit as many homers as Soriano in Wrigley. He’d also steal 20 more bases at least.

      • notsureifsrs 4 years ago

        “It would be interesting to see how Dice-K pitched in the NL for a year”

        very imagination-arily

        • Hoosierdaddy92 4 years ago

          ….for half a season anyway

          • notsureifsrs 4 years ago

            you put too much faith in his rehab program. he threw long toss the same afternoon he had tommy john and has been consistently throwing 300 pitches per week with a wiffleball to rekindle the spirit from his days in japan

  7. cookmeister 4 years ago

    If it happens, what would the compensation be?  I don’t know how it works, but i would guess it would be $$

    • Slopeboy 4 years ago

      The compensation would go something like this:
      Sox get Aramis Ramirez and Starlin Castro, Cubs get Epstein and John Lackey!!

      • Orvil Velazquez 4 years ago

        First Aramis will be a free agent, and second there is NO WAY the Cubs give up Castro, but nice try!

        • Slopeboy 4 years ago

           Sorry, I thought his contract had vested.

        • jb226 4 years ago

          He’s not NECESSARILY a free agent.  

          It’s one of the more complicated options.  It’s a club option; if the Cubs don’t pick it up, they owe a buyout ($2MM?).  If they do, Ramirez can choose to void it and become a free agent but doesn’t get any money, or can accept and take the option year.

          He has said he plans on testing free agency so he may well void it if the Cubs were to pick it up, but it’s no guarantee.  The money is about right, maybe a little high — just depends on if he wants to get out or if he wants a multi-year deal coming off a strong season instead of chancing a down year.

  8. StanleyHudson 4 years ago

    Cherington has been groomed to take over for years. I like Theo but I’d be completely confident if Cherington ran the show.

  9.   He should have been the first one to go.  I don’t think this whole thing would come about unless his going to Chicago was a sure thing. He’ll look kind of foolish if the Sox grant permission, he interviews and the Cubs decide not to grab him.

    • notsureifsrs 4 years ago

      why would that be? you think they’re going to make the decision based on his interviewing skills?

      this is part of a process. i could absolutely understand epstein wanting to take the cubs gig if it comes with increased independence. i could also see him leveraging the situation to get more independence out of henry in boston

      • He comments on WEEI a lot.  He likes to read his comments on the internet, it makes him think his absolutely idiotic ramblings mean something.

  10. Hoosierdaddy92 4 years ago

    Epstein would be a fine hire

  11. Slopeboy 4 years ago

    Cubs should wait until the Yankees vs Tigers series is over. They may want to speak to Cashman or ask for permission to talk to Girardi. The way the series has evolved for NY, anything is possible.

    • NomarGarciaparra 4 years ago

      They most likely want to find a new GM and allow him to find the manager, rather than hiring a manager first.

  12. notsureifsrs 4 years ago

    dan shaughnessy reporting this screams larry lucchino, which is a very bad sign for red sox fans that have a brain (over/under 50%?)

    • wrongway2011 4 years ago

      Yes. You’re so superior to everyone else.  Time to go upstairs and ask your mom for a tuna fish sandwich.  Maybe she’ll cut the crust off for you, just the way you like it.

  13. Friedman’s available. I’d hire him.

    • CaseyBlakeDeWitt 4 years ago

      I’m available, and I would definitely hire me.

      • JacksTigers 4 years ago

        Between being an astrounaut, the President, and Superman, I don’t have a lot of free time. But I could try to work it in.

  14. Based on what exactly?  Hopes and dreams?  If Friedman wanted a challenge (end the drought), he’d stay in Tampa.  If he wanted a big budget, he could pick his spot, including NY and Boston.  But, since he is extremely close with his owner, he’ll stay in Tampa…which is very good for baseball.

    • RedSx799 4 years ago

      What is interesting is that Friedman (and maybe Maddon) don’t actually have written contracts. they have a ‘handshake deal’ with the Rays’ Owner. So there’d be really theoretically no tampering charges if the Sox went after one/both.

  15. Remind me why everyone thinks Epstein is one of the best. Huge payroll and it seems that every time he signs someone, it backfires. He makes pretty good trades though, I’ll give him that.

    • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

      This just in gm’s also are in charge of drafting

      • Ya, but many people play important roles in that. He just makes the final decision. You can’t give all of that success to Epstein. It just seems to me that he throws a lot of money at players that turn in subpar seasons afterward. Beltre was a good signing, Scutaro was pretty good too. Other than them its mostly breaks and busts.

        • baseball52 4 years ago

          Those people are also hired by the GM.

        • notsureifsrs 4 years ago

          “Ya, but many people play important roles in that. He just makes the final decision.”

          whereas GMs make free agent decisions in total solitude

          • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

            crap, I probably should have read your response before i posted mine.

        • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

          ok so when he has a good draft its because other people play an important role…

          but when he signs an FA, its him alone in an office flipping a coin?


    • Yeah, That Bronson Arroyo for Willy Mo Pena was a great trade! For the Reds!

  16. baseball52 4 years ago

    I wouldn’t give up a dime. The Red Sox aren’t exactly in the position to bargain.

    • notsureifsrs 4 years ago

      the team that already has the guy under contract lacks leverage?

      • baseball52 4 years ago

        When they have a highly touted assistant behind him and have just begun a massive collapse that led to their once untouchable manager being fired, they lack leverage.

        • notsureifsrs 4 years ago

          you said that as if it explained how they lack leverage, but it doesn’t

          had a collapse (doesn’t affect leverage)
          fired manager (doesn’t affect leverage)
          touted assistant GM (adds leverage)

          if they in any way at all needed to lose epstein, that would lessen their leverage. but they don’t. the only leverage they lose is with epstein if he demands more autonomy/an extension

  17. Cubsfan 38 4 years ago


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