In the beginning of the 2013 Cubs season it seemed like Dale Sveum lacked the fire and ispirational style a manager that would benefit young athletes. At times I thought he would stick with starters too long, before going to the bullpen. Although, April was so difficult with our bullpen not having success in the closer role with Carlos Marmol.
Eventually Marmol was demoted from the closing role and Kevin Gregg became the closer and he had great success. Marmol and others were traded for youth to acquire minor league stars to help in the years ahead. Once again it was a strange year where half way in the season it seemed like the team was starting to perform better, but because they were still under .500, the Theo plan mandated that they would trade veteran players like Alfonso Soriano and Matt Garza and others to get young talented minor leaguers who might help us a few years in the future.
As a fan who just wants to contend every year and make it to the post season it is time I believe for the team to start playing to win now instead of always talking about next year and the year beyond.. ENOUGH..Let’s play for 2014!! Sveum seemed to have this attitude somewhat too…let’s play to win now. I believe as a manager throughout the year he improved, as also noted by Theo Epstein. However, I believe the true issues were Theo wanted our star rookies to be better this year than last year and is holding Sveum accountable for the regression and poor performance of the real stars …Anthony Rizzo who had a below .240 batting average all year and so did Starlin Castro…plus defensively Castro was horrible with occasional great plays but way too many errors. Darwin Barney was great defensively at second but below .220 batting average …collectively the poor performances offensively of all 3…is what I believe was a main trigger in Sveums firing. NEXT YEAR the plan is to bring young studs up from the minors and the fear of them not improving with the right manager is a concern if Sveum stayed on. Thus now the Cubs brass is looking for a proven manager with experience in bringing along young ballplayers and inspiring them to improve every year.
As recently stated by Epstein: Talented prospects such as Javier Baez, Jorge Soler, Albert Almora and Kris Bryant are on the way, and Epstein made it clear that providing the right atmosphere for those players was a key issue when it came to Sveum’s dismissal:
“Not in all cases, there were some good results this year, some young players emerged, but there were other young players who didn’t continue to develop this year,” Epstein said. “That’s a collective issue, but it’s my responsibility to get it right.”
SO, there you have it, SVEUM is gone, and our Cubs need a manager who can inspire the young studs who will play in Wrigley in 2014:
1. Starlin Castro (bounce back year and improve defensively)
2.Anthony Rizzo (needs to improve offensively)
3. Barney (if plays next year-needs to stay steady with the glove but to improve with batting average and power)
4. Keep the young studs motivated and better and better every day- Javier Baez, Jorge Soler, Albert Almora and Kris Bryant are on the way!!
5.Lastly, we need to make some trades in the winter to improve our starting pitching some more and decide what studs stay in the bullpen… Also, need to make some moves over the winter to acquire a Garza like starter and Soriano like batter, and a Campana like leadoff guy with SPEED!
Who is the magical manager we need to motivate and continue to improve our young minor leaguers in there first MLB season??? Too bad Ryne Sandberg is now a Phillies guy … Joe Girardi seems like he might be the answer who also liked the Cubs and enjoyed playing in Wrigley as well as being a hard worker and a gamer….
WINTER MEETINGS & SPRING TRAINING 2014 can’t come soon ENOUGH!!