The Cubs have announced the signing of David Ross to a three-year managerial contract running through the 2022 season with a club option for 2023. Ross, a former hero of the club’s 2016 title run, will be formally introduced at a press conference on Monday afternoon.
The Cubs had previously been said to be in serious consideration of Astros coach Joe Espada for the opening, but it appears that they will turn instead to an in-house option in replacing the departed Joe Maddon. Ross has spent three seasons in the Cubs front office as a special assistant to baseball operations following a fifteen-year year playing career that saw him win World Series titles in both Boston and Chicago.
Though he does not have direct managerial experience to his name, Ross is a well-respected former catcher who has shared dugouts with some of the most revered names in the occupation’s history. As a player, Ross suited up for championship winners Maddon, Bobby Cox, Bruce Bochy, John Farrell, and Terry Francona.
At 42 years of age, Ross becomes the youngest Cubs manager since Jim Riggleman was hired to the post in 1995, and his hiring is in keeping with the wider trend of youthful managers being installed around the game (Ross will not even be the youngest manager hired this afternoon, as reports indicate the Padres have hired 38-year-old Jayce Tingler as their own newly minted skipper).
Following an 84-78 season that saw their postseason hopes crumble down the stretch, the Cubs and manager Joe Maddon parted ways at the conclusion of the 2019 season. Maddon, who helped the club break a 108-year World Series drought with their championship in ’16, has since found employment with the Angels.