Chicago Cubs: Tom Ricketts wants a quick re-tool in order to make money
Many have suggested on social media that what has happened to the Cubs this season is somehow Tom Ricketts’ fault and that he’s unwilling to spend money to field a competitive team. While it may be difficult to defend the offseason moves to trade Yu Darvish and Victor Caratini in the name of competitiveness and not cutting salary, nothing else that has happened over the last decade would suggest that the Ricketts don’t want to spend money.
In fact, I’m sure they’re acutely aware of the fact that it takes money to make money, and at this point, it would behoove the team to be good in order to not only sell tickets, but fill the area around Wrigleyville and the rooftop bleachers, thus creating more money for the organization and Ricketts.
When Ricketts has said that Theo Epstein and now Jed Hoyer are responsible for player and contract decisions in almost all cases, I wholeheartedly believe him. Epstein and Hoyer have been unable to figure out how to extend or rework contracts for the core that was traded away, thus putting the club in the bind they found themselves heading into the season. While some extra money and the loosening of COVID restrictions allowed some spending after the earlier jettisoning of Darvish, Caratini, and even Kyle Schwarber, the inevitable happened to the Cubs after a hot start that had the Cubs in first place in the NL Central on June 24.
The old issues that had plagued the Cubs since making three-straight NLCS appearances were insurmountable and the fire sale began. The crazy thing though, was that had that 11-game losing streak never happened, the Cubs would have been buyers at the deadline, putting to bed the notion that the team wasn’t interested in spending money.
To that point, Ricketts doesn’t want to lose money, either on the gate or ancillary products/services in and around the ballpark. You can bet that this fire sale will serve as a kind of rebirth, with Hoyer remaking the club with prospects and some free agents over the next couple seasons. The club will spend money this offseason, because let’s face it: they have to in order to make money. Ricketts will want the product on the field to match the historic landmark and surrounding area that has been built up so nicely on his watch.