Chicago Cubs: Time’s up for Jed Hoyer to show us he has a plan forward

Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports)
Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports) /

Jed Hoyer traded the top of the Chicago Cubs rotation and the best backup catcher in MLB to San Diego. Then, I guess he went on vacation.

You remember Jed Hoyer, right?  President of Baseball Operations for the Chicago Cubs?  Theo Epstein’s long time number two guy and his replacement after Epstein left for his audition at MLB to become the next Commissioner.

Jed Hoyer, the guy who said he wasn’t going to tear anything down because, you know, that doesn’t work any more. Then said well, we can’t afford any big names either, because Tom Ricketts said so. That was right before Tom said money wasn’t a barrier, which was right after the Cubs said they might lose money in 2021 even if fans do come back.

Chicago Cubs: It is a teardown, right? Right? No?

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Then he traded Yu Darvish and Victor Caratini for Zach Davies and a handful of magic beans.  So, he IS tearing down.  That’s a teardown move. Clearly that’s a teardown move.

Then they let Jon Lester, Kyle Schwarber and Albert Almora walk. Followed that up with no extensions for Kris Bryant, Javier Baez and even Anthony Rizzo, who they managed to insult with their offer of $70 million.  Now it looks even more like a teardown.

Meanwhile the Dodgers added Trevor Bauer and the Cardinals added Nolan Arenado.  Oh, and we signed Joc Pederson. Yawn.  Then…crickets.

All this added up to exactly what I said last October was precisely what the Cubs couldn’t do this season. To summarize, there were two clear paths forward. Go go all-in on 2021; or tear it down.  Then there was a third, and the worse choice. Try and find a “middle path” by not adding big but not substracting big.

"That path, I said’, “… relegates the team to another season of [barely] above-average baseball. Good enough to make the postseason, maybe, but certainly not good enough to win the World Series.”"

Chicago Cubs: And viola!  Here we are

Tom and Jed, having done the worst possible thing, now have the worst possible outcome. A team that wins against crap teams at home (and now loses to them at home), and loses to good teams on the road. Barely .500 baseball; mediocrity defined.

So, a couple weeks from the trade deadline, the team seemingly locked in a death spiral, fans wondering what went wrong, and where is Hoyer?  Who knows where, and doing God knows what.

We do have this mish mash quote from him recently, that appeared in Bleacher Nation:

"“The honest answer to that is July 30 [aka the actual Trade Deadline]. I think we have to prepare. We have to have a lot of internal discussions. But it doesn’t mean you make a decision on either side of the ledger before that. We do have all that time, in some ways. But in terms of preparation, obviously internally, we have to make sure that we’re prepared to do both and prepare to make the best decisions as an organization.”"

Huh?  Say again?  Also he was quoted recently that believes there “is a sense of urgency.” Ya think?  Apparently not on his part.

Let’s be clear, again, about why this team is where it is and is what it is.  Jed didn’t do anything but weaken the rotation.  That’s it.  That for a team that was already weak in starting pitching.  If it wasn’t for a bunch of surprises in the bullpen the Cubs would be in really deep trouble.

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Wait, they are in deep trouble.  They are closer in the standings to the last-place Pirates than the first-place Brewers and, more likely headed down further.  “We do have all that time,” is about the most precious thing I’ve heard since Epstein said in 2012 that every season is sacred. You are out of time Jed.