I've been out of town for a few days, so I apologize for bringing this Barry Rozner nugget from Friday's Daily Herald to the table late:
The Cubs already have put new boss John McDonough in a tough spot, as the team looks for a new manager but has a GM on a short leash.
Might it have been better to give McDonough a clean board on which to scribble, instead of inheriting contracts?
Now, it’s possible that the new manager will outlast the current GM, meaning the next GM will inherit a manager.
It doesn’t make sense, and it might make a sane manager wonder if this is a good spot to land right now.
When Ed Lynch fired his first manager, Jim Riggleman, he developed a bunker mentality for the first few months after that and never really came out of that shell.
Lynch didn’t survive the next July.
Now, insiders say Jim Hendry is beginning to act the same way after whacking his first manager. Here’s hoping he comes out of it quickly and doesn’t meet the same fate.
If Cruller Jim is developing a bunker mentality, the problems are gonna get a lot worse on the northside before they get better. With Andy MacPhail gone and John McDonough in charge the buck for baseball operations stops at Jim Hendry. Now is not the time for him to go into a shell trying to protect himself.
Now let's compound this. What has happened since Rozner wrote this on Friday? Well, there was a little upset in the Motor City(guess why I was out of town over the weekend!). The Tigers win/Yankees loss has everyone speculating that Torre might be out in the Bronx. Who would replace Torre? Take a look at the cover of today's NY Daily News. Piniella of course. So if Hendry's first choice is Piniella, he will lose out if New York fires Torre. Now, just for shits and giggles, let's imagine that Girardi decides to take the Nats job or a broadcasting gig. Where does that leave our old friend Cruller Jim? Unless he can somehow convince Torre to manage the Cubs (I'm LMAO at even suggesting that) he's gonna be back to square one.
If the two prime candidates are as the media suggested last Monday Joe Girardi and Lou Piniella, the Cubs General Manager should have conducted the interviews with the two candiadates last week and had his new guy in place by the weekend. Before any other more appealing jobs opened up. But hey, this is what it is--the Cubs under Hendry. They are slow at everything. What amazes me is Hendry knows he should act quickly, but...:
"Free agency is in November, and I don't think you can pursue free agents without a manager," Hendry said. "In a perfect world, you'd like to act expediently and without rushing into it, feel like you have the person who best suits the job. Obviously, we have a lot of work to do in the winter besides that."
It's not a perfect world Jim. Something tells me the clock could run out on Cruller Jim and he just might end up having to settle for a fourth or fifth candidate. Maybe the interviews of Quade and Listach are not academic at all.