The Chicago Cubs fired Dale Sveum for all the right reasons today which is laid out by Theo and provided very nicely by CubsDen
Soon, our organization will transition from a phase in which we have been primarily acquiring young talent to a phase in which we will promote many of our best prospects and actually field a very young, very talented club at the major league level. The losing has been hard on all of us, but we now have one of the top farm systems in baseball, some of the very best prospects in the game, and a clear path forward. In order for us to win with this group – and win consistently – we must have the best possible environment for young players to learn, develop and thrive at the major league level. We must have clear and cohesive communication with our players about the most important parts of the game. And – even while the organization takes a patient, long view – we must somehow establish and maintain a galvanized, winning culture around the major league club.
I believe a dynamic new voice – and the energy, creativity and freshness that comes with this type of change – provides us with the best opportunity to achieve the major league environment we seek. We will begin our search immediately – a process which will be completed before the GM meetings in early November and perhaps much sooner. There are no absolute criteria, but we will prioritize managerial or other on-field leadership experience and we will prioritize expertise developing young talent. We have not yet contacted any candidates or asked permission to speak with any candidates, but that process will begin tomorrow morning.
Here is what I wrote just last Weds. in my piece named “This Off-Season is Predictable?” found here –
Move #1: Fire Sveum/Hire Girardi
Probably the first move that is going to be made this off-season is the firing of Dale Sveum and the hiring of Chicago native Joe Girardi. The front office has asked the fan base, media, and players to be patient because this rebuilding process takes time but we ALL need something. That something is the firing of Sveum and hiring of Girardi. The move signals another big step in the rebuilding process. A signal that says the Cubs are starting the process of competing by adding a manager who is a proven winner, talent developer, and overall beloved Chicagoan Joe Girardi. By adding Joe they are stating “the organization has their guys in place that has experience with all phases of the managing game and he is going to take the Chicago Cubs to the next level and beyond. Joe Girardi symbolizes the start of the light that leads us to the end of the tunnel.” The fact is there has been too many red flags for the Dale Sveum era Cubs. The recent turmoil in the clubhouse, the regression of core players, in game decisions, and various other things make a decision of firing Sveum easy. But what makes it easier is filling his place with Joe Girardi. This is the single most important move of the off-season and I now believe there is a 50/50 shot of it actually happening. (Note: I also tie in the coaching changes here as well.)
No need to call me a Cubs prophet or bowing down, that is not needed. The fact is anyone could see the writing on the wall in respect to Dale Sveum hiring and the great possibility of Joe Girardi or someone like him being hired to fill role Chicago Cubs manager. I think what I laid out and what Theo was quoted is about as right on as you can be and honestly it is the right thing to do. Deep down I do not think Theo believed Dale Sveum was “the guy” to take them all the way but I do believe he was a guy Theo and Jed gambled on to see if he can become “the guy.” The gamble did not pay off the past two years thus where we are right now. The writing has been on the wall since June which I expressed my frustration back then found here. Back then I questioned whether he was the guy and once again the front office has proved I was correct in thinking so.
Now it becomes the stage of finding that guy to take them to the next level. The guy to fill the void as manager and excel in all those things Dale Sveum didn’t. I think the front office has a few managers in mind that they would love to hire with one near impossible to get in Joe Maddon and one that looks almost too good to be true in Joe Girardi. I think both would be a fantastic land for this front office. But I also would not count out Mike Maddux who was the front office’s first choice during the last go round. I guess the only thing left to do is watch the process, analyze, and wait to see if once again Theo and I are on the same page.
Until Next Time….