David Ross’ playing career has only been officially over for about six weeks, but the veteran catcher is already considering a return to the Cubs, writes CSN Chicago’s Patrick Mooney. The Cubs, who already have former big leaguers Ted Lilly, Kerry Wood and Ryan Dempster on hand as special assistants (plus former Major Leaguers Kevin Youkilis and John Baker in other organizational roles), are interested in adding Ross to their front office in a special assistant/consulting type of role, GM Jed Hoyer told Mooney last week at the Winter Meetings.
“It would seem almost a shame if he wasn’t (around),” Hoyer said. “He was such a big part of what we did from a team-chemistry standpoint. Probably no one has a better feel for what we’ll need – what tweaks we’ll need in the clubhouse or what’s going on – than he will. So I think having him around in the next few years (would be) really valuable.”
Ross, who ascended to cult hero status among Cubs fans toward the end of his run as a player, tells Mooney that he hopes to remain connected to the Cubs forever and is interested in experiencing a new side of the game. “There’s a lot of Hall of Famers in that front office,” said the veteran backstop. “And I want to get to know that side of things. So, yeah, I’m sure there’s something that’s going to work out in the future with the Cubs.” For the time being, however, Ross noted that he also has to consider his retirement as an opportunity to spend more time with his young family — something that isn’t an easy feat when playing a 162-game schedule over a 183-day regular season (plus a six-week Spring Training and the postseason).
Set to turn 40 in March, Ross hit .229/.338/.446 with 10 homers in the final season of his 15-year Major League career and took home his second World Series ring. He hit a sixth-inning solo homer off Cleveland relief ace Andrew Miller in Game 7 of the World Series that looked to merely pad Chicago’s lead at the time but proved to provide a critical run as the Indians later staged a rally to tie the game against Aroldis Chapman. He retired with a career .229/.316/.423 batting line over the life of 883 games that were split across seven Major League teams.