Crane Kenney May Be The Odd Man Out


There has been a lot of speculation this season regarding who will take the fall for the Cubs woes this season. The two leading candidates have been manager Mike Quade and general manager Jim Hendry. Though to Quade’s credit, it would be unfair to judge the Cubs manager considering the circumstances of this season. Quade is a first year manager, who has seen each of his five starting pitchers in his Opening Day rotation spend time on the disabled list as well as most of the position players in his Opening Day lineup. This is not the first season that the Cubs front office management has been questioned, in fact, this is the third straight season where Jim Hendry and the Cubs’ manager–Lou Piniella in recent seasons–have been on the hot seat. The Cubs already made a change at their managerial post, meaning a change at the general manager post would be the next likely option. However, there could be another scenario where both Hendry and Quade are safe.

Paul Sullivan of the Chicago Tribune was asked by a reader in his latest mailbag about a possible replacement for Kenney, and Sullivan indicated that Kenney’s time with the Cubs may be coming to an end.

"Interested to hear more about why you would hire Red Sox president Larry Lucchino. (Seriously.) I know nothing about the guy. What would he bring to Cubs?Bob Quartell, ClevelandLucchino gets things done. He was instrumental in building Camden Yards, which began the retro ballpark revolution. He got a new ballpark built in San Diego, and a renovated Fenway Parkin Boston. He also won a couple World Series with the Red Sox, and doesn’t put up with any garbage from players, agents, or the media for that matter. I believe his contract is up in Boston, so he should be available. Don’t know if he is the answer, but something has to happen. The current Cubs president, Crane Kenney, certainly had his shot, and failed. The only ones still defending him are his pals in the media. Time’s up."

The plan for the Cubs ever since they were bought by the Ricketts family from the Chicago Tribune was to emulate the Boston Red Sox way of success. Up to this point, the Cubs have yet to do so. That is because both Hendry and Kenney are stuck in the past when it comes to operating a baseball team, and the Red Sox have become familiar with the modern nuances of the game. It would be a step in the right direction for the Cubs organization if they are able to bring in Lucchino from the Red Sox organization. Though if the Cubs do replace Kenney this off-season, there is a good chance that Hendry may also be replaced.

Chairman Tom Ricketts is going to have to re-tool the Cubs front office. Ricketts obviously does not have the mindset to construct an entire front office. That is why Ricketts should begin with hiring a new president (Lucchino?), and then let the new president renovate the Cubs front office.