Not that Chris Carpenter!

How much was Theo Epstein worth to the Red Sox? The answer is in: a Chris Carpenter. Unfortunately for the Sox, it is not the Cy Young Award winning pitcher from Exeter, New Hampshire.

Instead, the Sox get the Bryan, Ohio version:

2011: 10 Games, 9.2 IP, 12 Hits, 8 BB, 8 SO, 2.79 ERA

Now, I don’t really want to get into whether this is adequate compensation for Theo. Instead, it got me wondering about what other managers or general managers have been traded for players. I could not find many:

  1. Ozzie Guillen for Jhan Marinez and Ozzie Martinez (2011)
  2. Lou Pinella for Randy Winn and Antonio Perez (2002)
  3. Andy McPhail for Hector Trinidad (1994)
  4. Chuck Tanner for Manny Sanguillen and $100,000 (1976)
  5. Gil Hodges for Bill Denehy and $100,000 (1967)

Were the White Sox being cutesy with the Guillen deal? They traded an Ozzie for an Ozzie and got two players with only a “t” as the difference in their last names. Oddly funny. I think they would have been better off asking for Logan Morrison and a loan. But, I guess you can’t have it all.

Should Cubs fans be happy with this deal? They get a talented president of baseball operations in Theo Epstein and his henchman GM Jed Hoyer for a talented 25 year old reliever who may or may not learn to harness his high 90s heat. Some Cubs fans are not too jazzed about the deal. How might it turn out?

A Cubs Optimist (if such a creature exists) would say: the Mets and Pirates both won World Series after trading for managers. Managers, General Managers, Presidents of Baseball Operations, there is no difference between these things really. They are all just titles. Heck, Theo, Jed and Dale all sound like they were part of the Clampett clan and you know what happened to the Clampett’s right? They struck oil, black gold, Texas tea! You know what that means – Cubs win Series in 2015!

A Cubs Pessimist would say: the only other time a team traded for a GM was the Cubs in 1994 and that trade was followed by the heartbreak of 2003 and three LDS sweeps in 1998, 2007 and 2008. The Cubs are caught in a time warp of repeating history – trading for a GM who won two World Series titles with another team in hopes of breaking the Curse of the Billy Goat. Theo and Jed will only bring further heartbreak. Cubs wallow in another decade of misery.

Theo certainly has been busy though, trying to earn his keep. Here are some of the things he’s done:

  • Hires Jed Hoyer
  • Fires Mike Quade
  • Hires Dale Sveum (reportedly taking him from the Sox)
  • Signs David DeJesus
  • Trades Tyler Colvin, DJ LeMaheiu to Colorado for Ian Stewart and Casey Weathers
  • Non-tenders Koyie Hill
  • Sean Marshall traded to Reds for Travis Wood, Dave Sappelt and Ronald Torreyes.
  • Signs Manny Corpas and Andy Sonnanstine
  • Re-signs Reed Johnson
  • Trades Carlos Zambrano and cash to Marlins for Chris Volstad
  • Trades Andrew Cashner and Kyung-Min Na for Anthony Rizzo and Zach Cates
  • Signs Paul Maholm
  • Re-signs Kerry Wood

That seems like a pretty busy off-season, Cubs fans. Will it help in 2012? I don’t think so. Here are the likely starters for opening day:

C Geovany Soto

1B Bryan LaHair

2B Darwin Barney

3B Ian Stewart

SS Starlin Castro

LF Alfonso Soriano

CF Marlon Byrd

RF David DeJesus

Rotation:

Ryan Dempster

Matt Garza

Travis Wood

Chris Volstad

Paul Maholm

Ouch. I don’t think that is going to cut it in the NL Central. It looks like Theo is planning for a successful Cubs club in 2015, so you Cubs fans may have to wait a bit for your WS trophy and just enjoy your day games.

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