Thanks for the memories Theo Epstein

Alex Mellion
Journal Staff

Theo Epstein is no longer the general manager of the Boston Red Sox.  Epstein agreed to a contract with the Chicago Cubs on October 11th, and while compensation has yet to be worked out, and the deal still isn’t official, Epstein, like it or not is going to a franchise that is even more cursed than the Sox were.
When Epstein officially became the Sox GM at the end of the 2002 season, he inherited a franchise that hadn’t won a World Series championship in 84 years. Nine years and two championships later, it’s safe to say that Epstein brought the team back to prominence and led them to success they hadn’t seen since Babe Ruth played for the Sox.
Red Sox fans probably could have seen this one coming, as Epstein had left the team before, resigning after turning down a three-year, $1.5-million-per-year contract for personal reasons following the 2005 season.  He then famously fled reporters in his Volvo while wearing a gorilla suit, and Sox fans everywhere figured that he was done as GM.  On January 19, 2006, the Red Sox announced that Epstein would resume his duties as GM, and also made him the executive vice president of the team.
Epstein made a lot of great moves while he was in Boston, and a few awful ones as well.  One of Epstein’s best moves came after the 2003 season, after he decided to not renew then-manager Grady Little’s contract. Little became infamous in Red Sox lore when he decided to leave Pedro Martinez in the game after he gave up three straight hits against the Yankees in game seven of the ALCS.  The Red Sox subsequently blew a 5-2 lead and ended up losing the game and the pennant when Aaron Bleepin’ Boone hit a walk-off home run in the 11th inning.
Epstein decided to hire former Phillies manager Terry Francona as the next Red Sox manager, and the results have spoken for themselves.  Epstein was also the main architect behind free-agent signings and trades that resulted in the team acquiring key pieces of those World Series teams, including David Ortiz, Curt Schilling and Kevin Millar.
Epstein will also be remembered for some of his moves that didn’t quite panned out as well as he thought they would.  Players like J.D. Drew, John Lackey and Daisuke Matsuzaka (who, when all their contracts are up will have made $204.5 million combined) never lived up to the lofty expectations that came with sporting a Red Sox uniform.
Theo Epstein will now have the seemingly impossible task of leading the Cubs to a World Series title.  The Cubs have not won the World Series in 103 years. At that time Teddy Roosevelt was the President, Henry Ford produced the first Model T automobile, and the Montreal Wanderers were the unofficial Stanley Cup Champions.  I think I speak for all of Red Sox nation when I say, good luck Theo, you’re certainly going to need it.