Theo Epstein Newsbeat
Wednesday, November 30, 2016
Missing with the very top picks gets you fired.
Having acquired pitchers Sean Newcomb and Touki Toussaint in previous trades, Atlanta now has three of the first 16 players taken in the 2014 Draft. That’s impressive. But I’m pretty sure every executive would rather have Trea Turner (drafted 13th from North Carolina State, by the Padres), Schwarber or Conforto.
One of Joe Maddon’s operating principles is “Do Simple Better.” Epstein did that when he went with Bryant and Schwarber over college arms and high school bats, and the Cubs won a World Series because of it.
Posted: November 30, 2016 at 02:16 PM | 16 comment(s)
Friday, November 11, 2016
Epstein said at the general managers meetings this week he has “no doubt (Heyward) will address it” and praised the way he handled the season-long slump.
“He never backed down from his struggles, and a lot of players with the performance he had after signing a big contract would have found their way to the disabled list or found their way to avoid the big moment,” Epstein said. “Instead, he was fully engaged with his teammates and even assumed the leadership position at the very end. So that bodes extremely well for the future.”
Posted: November 11, 2016 at 08:02 PM | 69 comment(s)
Monday, October 24, 2016
I’ve been impressed by Arod’s work as an analyst. He clearly works hard to prepare for the broadcasts.
Sunday, October 23, 2016
Exciting times for Cubs fans.
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Thursday, October 06, 2016
I’ve argued in the past for the idea of “emergent WAR,” which is the idea of teams deriving value, not from individual contributions, but from the ways in which the parts of the roster can interact with one another. For example, putting a groundball-heavy pitcher in front of a good infield defense can be worth several hits turned into outs, and turning a hit into an out is worth roughly three-quarters of a run each time you do it. A good GM could have the wherewithal to execute a plan to gather those players together. These specific ideas (catcher framing, putting a groundball staff in front of a great infield) may not be earth shattering any more, but there are more of those out there, and they can easily be worth the amount of value it would take to justify a salary like $10 million per year, even if a GM only has one or two of them in his pocket.
The GM has to be the organizing emergent principle behind a front office. The much-discussed “rapidly expanding front office” is actually a nod to the fact that no one person can do everything that needs doing. That’s not a slam on them, that’s just the way things are. There has to be one person who can aggregate all of that knowledge and those little advantages and turn it into a coherent actionable whole. Someone who can understand why the statistical thing is important and why the scouting thing is needed and why we’re even talking about the player development thing. Without that, a front office is just a bunch of people making noise.
With that emergent organizing principle in place, a baseball team is a living, breathing organism that is more than the sum of its parts. That’s where the GM makes his money. A baseball team is such a complex organism and the skill set it takes to run one well, while not impossible to find, isn’t easy either. There are probably plenty of people who can approximate it, but very few who can do it exceptionally well, and the spaces in between really could be worth the kinds of millions that executives are starting to be paid.
Sure, the 31st-best general manager in baseball knows a lot more about baseball than everyone who is currently reading this article. But there’s a lot of room to grow. We see that in the 30 GMs who are currently employed. And yeah, it’s not unreasonable to think that the best GM in baseball is worth a win or two more than that 31st guy.
Wednesday, September 28, 2016
They’ve always said it was inevitable, but the later in the season it got, a little doubt started to creep in.
Chairman Tom Ricketts and president Theo Epstein hammered out a new deal that will keep Epstein in charge of the Cubs’ baseball operations for five more years. Epstein’s contract had been set to expire at season’s end.
The deal surpasses the $8 million annually that Dodgers baseball czar Andrew Friedman garnered in fall 2014 to become their president of baseball operations, sources said. Friedman’s deal had been an industry standard.
Worth every penny.
Sunday, September 25, 2016
Of course, Ben Cherington showed patience, which got him booted.
Despite the success, Epstein admits he made mistakes near the end of his Red Sox tenure.
“I got in too much of a rush to build an uber-team and got too aggressive in free agency rather than relying on the things we did well as an organization — scouting, player development, and trying to find undervalued players.’’
Saturday, September 17, 2016
Tuesday, June 07, 2016
So, he’s saying Theo isn’t perfect. Of course, nobody is.
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