Chicago Cubs General Manager Jim Hendry is hopeful of the idea that he will be able to construct a quick fix for the Chicago Cubs in 2011. Hendry is basing this optimism on the last couple of times the Cubs were coming off a disappointing season. First after the 2002 season, when they were lead by new manager Dusty Baker. And then after the 2006 season, when they brought in new manager Lou Piniella and slugger Alfonso Soriano.
In both of those years the Cubs have entered the season with a new manager. Much like they are going to do for the 2011 season. As of now, many still believe that Ryne Sandberg is best fit for the team. But, if Hendry wants the Cubs to be contenders next season, I don’t think Sandberg is the appropriate man for the job. If the Cubs intend to contend next season, then they will be best suited to hire an experienced manager. Realistically speaking, the Cubs will probably make a push for Fredi Gonzalez, but he maybe lined up as the new Braves manager. Joe Girardi is a possibility, but it appears that he does not want to leave the position he is in with the Yankees to come to the state of turmoil that the Cubs are in.
Hendry also said that the key to a quick turnaround is by making 4 0r 5 good offseason moves. The biggest need for the Chicago Cubs will probably be for starting pitching. The Cubs could choose to fill the slots with young arms they have in their system like Jeff Samardzija and Jay Jackson, or they may opt to sign a veteran. Offensively, the Cubs will look for either a first baseman or right fielder, pending on where Tyler Colvin ends up. The Cubs also will have to re-tool their bench, as for the second straight season it is a weak spot for the team.
Personally, I think it is a long shot that the Cubs will be legitimate contenders next season. They have way too many holes with the team, and I do not think they will be able to fill them all out this off-season. Which is why I think the Cubs should go under a re-building phase. Hire Sandberg as their manager, and then start to implement the young players that should be coming up within the next couple of seasons. Because, right now, it is a pipe dream to say that they will be able to win next season.