The Chicago Cubs will not win the 2024 World Series because Jed Hoyer refuses to compromise
As previously stated, if the Cubs win the World Series it will be due, in no small part, to Craig Counsell’s ability to manage a bullpen that Hoyer refuses to spend on.
The bullpen is a microcosm of the problem with Hoyer and a growing number of baseball executives in general: they have a mantra of what will be successful and what won’t and they refuse to stray from that path. To be fair, before we dive into the negative, that mantra has led Jed Hoyer to being a World Series-winning General Manager and a President of Baseball Operations for one of the most storied franchises in all of sports.
I’m not going to say the man doesn’t deserve the job he has or that he hasn’t had success. However, the thing that every employee and every organization must have in a landscape that changes as quickly as Major League Baseball is a willingness to be flexible, and in that area Hoyer appears to be woefully ill-equipped.
He wouldn’t bend on how he valued former Chicago Cubs legends Javier Baez, Kris Bryant, Anthony Rizzo or Kyle Schwarber. He wouldn’t spend big on free agents like Yoshinobu Yamamoto or Josh Hader. He wouldn’t trade prospect capital for Juan Soto, likely due to an unwillingness to spend dollars to keep him on the roster past 2024 which, alone, will cost the Yankees $30+ million.
As we make our way to 2024 the Cubs have added left-hander Shota Imanaga and infielder Michael Busch but in the process they’ve lost All-Star starter Marcus Stroman, infielder Jeimer Candelario, the best pitching prospect they’ve had since Mark Prior, and potentially Cody Bellinger.
The fact that the two additions to the Cubs 2024 roster were made less than a week before the Cubs Convention has to at least raise the question of whether or not this is yet another condescension by Hoyer to the fans. If that convention had not been on verge of happening, would those moves have been made at all?
He claims to have more moves up his sleeves as we head toward spring training but if we're being honest, this team needs to make several more additions if they want to be serious contenders and time is running out for Hoyer to make them.
A signing of Matt Chapman would allow the Cubs to slot Busch in at DH, Bellinger at 1st, Pete Crow-Armstrong in center and they could then trade Christopher Morel for a reliever on a cost-controlled contract like Emmanuel Clase.
That being said, Hoyer has not given any indication that any of those moves are reasonable let alone likely, and therefore he is the biggest thing standing in between this team and another World Series championship.