A Farewell To Jim Hendry Part 3


The weekend of saying farewell to former Cubs general manager Jim Hendry is drawing to a close. This week marks the beginning of what is going to be a major face-lift to the Cubs organization over the next five weeks and into the off-season. Not only will the Cubs bring on a new general manager, but they will be changing their organization philosophy. Hendry was viewed by many as an “old-style” general manager, who seldom used modern technology to his benefit when evaluating players. But from here forward, everything that Cubs fans have grown accustomed to seeing from the Cubs’ front office will have to be thrown out. As the next general manager of the Cubs will bring with him a fresh take, and an unique perspective on the baseball operations of the Cubs.

The search for the Cubs next general manager is only just beginning. Chairman Tom Ricketts has spent this past weekend talking to industry sources or other connections he has made over his time as Cubs’ chairman to seek advice for how he should conduct the general manager search and what he should be looking for. Though, it shouldn’t be hard for Ricketts to find candidates. Considering that Ricketts is willing to spend unlimited resources to help the organization be one of the best in the majors, the strong farm system and the fame that would come from being the guy to potentially lead the Cubs to their first World Series title in over 100 years are all reasons why there will be plenty of interest in the Cubs’ general manager position.

Jim Hendry was


“dismissed” on Friday, and it seems that the list of candidates for the Cubs general manager position has grown each day since. Confirming the belief that the Cubs general manager position will be heavily coveted, and that this will be a drawn out process. The two front-runners appear to be Chicago White Sox assistant general manager Rick Hahn, and New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman. However, Hahn and Cashman are far from the only two legitimate candidates on the list of potential Hendry replacements. With that said, lets take a look at all the candidates that have been mentioned by various reports over the past couple of days.

Dave Van Dyck of the Chicago Tribune appears to be the first reporter to draw up a list of candidates. Unlike other reports throughout the weekend, Van Dyck constructed his list from what he heard from other league executives as well as Ricketts’ known preferences.

  • Brian Cashman, currently employed as the New York Yankees’ general manager: The only question with Cashman is whether or not he is ready to leave the Yankees organization. It is no secret that Cashman has bumped heads with the new-era Steinbrenners, and that has led many to speculate that Cashman may walk after the season when his contract expires. If Cashman does decide to leave the Yankees organization, then he would be the likely candidate to replace Hendry. In fact, as Van Dyck reported, Ricketts tried to reach out to Cashman during the All-Star break to see what his post-season availability will look like. Some national reporters have taken Cashman by his word and do not expect him to leave the Yankees organization. But whether or not that is true will be determined this off-season. But if Cashman is interested in becoming the general manager of the Cubs, then there is a good chance he will indeed be in Chicago.
  • Andrew Friedman, currently employed as the Tampa Bay Rays’ general manager: Friedman’s candidacy for the Cubs general manager position is rather interesting. First the belief was that Friedman would only leave the Rays organization if it meant going back to his home-town in Houston and join the Astros organization; then, some reports started to suggest that Friedman would be a candidate that Ricketts would consider; now, it appears that Friedman is a top candidate to replace Hendry. The interesting thing with Friedman’s availability, is that he operates without a contract with the Rays organization. At 34 years old, Friedman is considered to be the top young general manager in all of baseball. Both Matt Garza and Carlos Pena gave Friedman a ringing endorsement. Both Garza and Pena were with the Rays while Friedman was the general manager, and they know first hand how good Friedman is as a general manager. Being with the Rays, Friedman has severely limited resources and is tasked with building a contending team by developing players from within the Rays’ organization. Meaning Friedman would fit the criteria as a general manager who is successful in developing players. Now imagine the work Friedman could do with the amount of resources that would be available to him if he becomes the Cubs general manager.
  • Rick Hahn, currently employed as the assistant general manager of the Chicago White Sox: Hahn would appear to be the local favorite. Many local reporters have spent their time this weekend building up Hahn’s reputation and connecting him to the Cubs organization. Hahn is widely considered by many to be the “top prospect” of all future general managers. But the reason why Hahn may finish behind Cashman and Friedman is because Ricketts is searching for a “big name” as well as someone who has experience as a general manager. Though, Hahn should not be discredited considering the amount of experience he has with the White Sox organization. Hahn could be the man if both Cashman and Friedman are off the board.

As long as the Cubs next general manager is not Ned Collletti, Josh Byrnes, or Mike Rizzo then I will be satisfied with whoever Ricketts picks. I would imagine that the next general manager of the Cubs will either be Cashman, Friedman, or Hahn. Of the three, Friedman would be my choice. But Cashman and Hahn would be good options as well. Either way, it will definitely be fun to watch how the Cubs’ general manager search progresses.