Originally Posted by tebman
Sometimes I wonder if Epstein knew what he was getting into when he took the job. I see pictures of him, always with that tight-lipped, pensive look on his face, and I think that rather than deeply considering his next chess-master move he's asking himself why the hell he did this.
The Cubs have been run as a tourist attraction for decades and now that trend is headed to its logical conclusion as Ricketts makes it into a theme park. The baseball operation remains secondary to the ballpark/neighborhood mystique. If Epstein didn't know that, he didn't do his homework or he didn't get good advice, or both. When Girardi turned down the job it should have rung a loud bell in Theo's office.
The Wittenmyer story shows again how deep the Cubs' honeydripping has flowed. It wouldn't matter who was hired because after all, who doesn't love a theme park?
I wonder that, too, if Epstein knew what he was getting into. A lot of the beat guys write about him as if he is the GM of the team. Jed Hoyer's name doesn't get mentioned nearly as often. It's like it is lost on some people that Epstein is not the GM. He is the team president, and that means he almost certainly has a hand in the business side of the team, not just the baseball side.
You wonder how many hours Epstein has spent worrying about ancillary items such as signage, rooftop owners, Jumbotrons, boutique hotels and ballpark renovations. I don't know if he envisioned how difficult a process it would be to get things done in a place like Chicago. All of these things take the focus off baseball operations, and that has to be at least somewhat unsettling for him.