An Appreciation for Theo Epstein

Everyone knows that Theo Epstein is an unbelievable general manager. He broke two of the longest curses in Major League Baseball with the Boston Red Sox and the Chicago Cubs, and he is recognized as one best general managers in all of sports.

However, even with this recognition, I don’t think Red Sox fans fully appreciate what Theo Epstein did for the city of Boston. When you say a name like Bill Belichick, the first word that comes to most minds is “genius.” As the saying goes, “In Bill we trust.”

But, when you mention the name Theo Epstein, for whatever reason, I don’t think fans feel the same way. They know that he was crucial to Boston’s success, but he is not thought of in the same legendary status.

One obvious fact is that Theo Epstein is a lot younger, has had a shorter career than Bill, is not a head coach and does not have as many championships. The fact that Belichick is a coach and a general manager, whereas Theo is just a general manager, is a big difference.

When you look at Epstein’s resume, though, you cannot use any other term to describe him than “genius.” Theo Epstein is only 44 years old, and yet, he already has three World Series Championships!

Theo graduated from Yale in 1995 and then went to the University of San Diego to get his law degree. While he was in San Diego, he worked for the San Diego Padres and was the director of player development.

In 2002, Theo became the general manager of the Red Sox, where he broke an 86-year-old curse and brought two world championships to Boston in 2004 and 2007. In 2011, Epstein left Boston to become the President of Baseball Operations for the Cubs. Theo rebuilt the Cubs’ farm system, and in 2016, the Cubs won their first championship since 1908.

What general manager Theo Epstein has done for the @RedSox and @Cubs deserves our appreciation.Click To Tweet

For two different teams, Epstein broke two lifelong curses. In two years for the Red Sox, Theo did what no general manager could for 86 years. In five years for the Cubs, Theo did what no general manager could do for 108 years.

It is truly incredible.

In addition to three World Series, Theo has won numerous awards, such as Sporting News Executive of the Decade, Sporting News Executive of the Year, Major League Executive of the Year by Baseball America, and many more accolades. In April 2007, Time Magazine named Theo one of the World’s 100 most influential people.

The term “G.O.A.T.” is not used very often in Boston. It is usually left for Belichick, Tom Brady, or David Ortiz. It should be used for Terry Francona. You can add Theo Epstein to that list.

Dave Dombrowski has had a rocky tenure thus far with the Red Sox. Known as a guy who doesn’t develop talent, fans have been frustrated that Dombrowski has basically gutted the Sox’s farm system. On the flip side, fans have also been annoyed with his passiveness at times. This was not an issue with Theo. Epstein always seemed to find the right balance of creating a great farm system while also acquiring big-time free agents and making trades for difference makers.

As Opening Day falls this week, Theo Epstein will be starting his seventh season with the Cubs. It is weird to think that he will have a longer tenure in Chicago then he did in Boston. If Cubs fans are lucky, the organization will hold onto Theo for the rest of his career. Otherwise, there could be a third team that no longer has a championship drought in Major League Baseball.

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