Decorated executive Theo Epstein is stepping down as the president of baseball operations for the Chicago Cubs on Nov. 20, the team announced Tuesday. However, it doesn’t appear that he plans to immediately jump into consideration for the same role with the Philadelphia Phillies or elsewhere.
MLB.com‘s Jon Morosi says that Epstein, 46, plans to take a year off, specifically saying that he doesn’t believe that the resignation is to pursue a job with the Phillies or New York Mets. RADIO.COM MLB Insider Jon Heyman adds that both the Phillies and Seattle Mariners “have at least considered Theo,” but also adds that the belief is that Epstein isn’t looking take another position right away.
Of course, the right offer from the Phillies, Mets or anyone else could change Epstein’s mind. That said, he’s ended historic World Series droughts as an executive in Boston and Chicago now, so there’s not really any job that is or could become available that would blow him away, in theory. Money talks, but Epstein probably knows that if there are teams willing to back up the track for him now, similar offers will be on the table whenever he chooses to jump back into things.
Joel Sherman of The New York Post says that in an internal memo, Epstein told “Cubs Friends” that he wants to take next summer off, but that he does “plan on having a third chapter leading a baseball organization someday,” but adds that he doesn’t believe it will begin during the 2021 season.
If Epstein truly is intent on taking a year off, we’ll see if the Phillies are actually willing to wait on him. To say that the team has sent out mixed signals on how they plan to proceed with building their front office would be an understatement.
For the time being, it appears that they are moving forward with a search for their next president of baseball operations. Heyman has suggested that the Phillies have interest in Tampa Bay Rays’ general manager Erik Neander to fill that role, though Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic has reported that Neander isn’t interested in leaving the Rays currently. The Phillies plan to interview former Miami Marlins’ president of baseball operations Michael Hill according to Jayson Stark of The Athletic, though SNY‘s Andy Martino says that he interviewed for the same position with the New York Mets.
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