From Paul Sullivan in Sunday’s Chicago Tribune regarding the contract extensions of Cubs GM Jim Hendry and Dusty Baker.
Baker has had as much to do with changing the Cubs’ culture as Hendry. No longer is the concept of being lovable losers acceptable, as it was for many years before Baker’s arrival. Baker’s personality always will make him a lightning rod for controversy, but his record speaks for itself. If the Cubs wait and Baker flees, they will regret it, just as they regretted letting Greg Maddux go after 1992.
Replies Ben Schwartz,
Well, this is my view, and in the exact phrases I use around here. If Sullivan goes after Will Leitch anytime soon, at least I know where he’s cribbing ideas.
However, a Trib-owned paper covering the Trib-owned Cubs leaves out one major, sadly closed question in my mind — whether it serves the Cubs to be owned by the Trib Company at all. Hendry made some errors. But with the pitching last year, I think the Trib’s plummeting stock, fraudulent circulation numbers, IRS bills ($1 billion!) — and then turning around in ’04/’05 to blame Sosa’s paltry (in comparison) salary write off for their epic financial migraines — has more to do with the Cubs limited options. Hendry is no Steinbrenner when it comes to smart $$$ moves (and who is?), but he’s not so dumb he couldn’t see the massive holes in his bullpen.