Ramirez to be “Player-Coach” for Triple A club

Although he has not played any ball since 2011, the Chicago Cubs have named 12-time All star and former slugger Manny Ramirez in to coach their triple A squad.  Cubs President Theo Epstein said that the move was not a publicity stunt.

He’s extremely accountable,” Epstein told reporters. “Right now, he’s extremely honest, and he has a lot to offer in part because of what he went through. You never know in this world. But I think there’s a potential high impact here.

“If he can influence one player, make them a little bit calmer in the box, give them a little better approach to hitting, teach them something about how to approach the right-handed breaking ball the right way, if he can convince one player not to do PEDs [performance-enhancing drugs], if he can influence one player the right way and in a positive way, then it was worthwhile.”

The Cubs hope the move will help their young prospects.

 

Rebuilding program getting hard to live with

When Theo Epstein took over as President of Baseball Operations in 2011, he knew that it would take some time to rebuild the Cubs into a franchise that fans would be proud of.  Fast forward three seasons and the former Executive of the Decade (from his time with the Boston Red Sox) is beginning to feel the frustration and heat from fans.

“We feel the same frustration,” Epstein said. “But I think I’d be really compromising the organization if we decided just because we were frustrated and people around us were frustrated that we would scrap the plan and try to add some things cosmetically to make it look better than it really is.  There’s a really high bar we’re aiming for and we know we’re going to get there and it’s going to be sustainable.”

Be sure to get your tickets and support your Chicago Cubs as they try and win the NL Central in 2014.