Craig Counsell: The Ideal Choice for the Chicago Cubs

Man, I just wrote this about Emma Hayes

The most frustrating thing about the Chicago Cubs, and one that’s driven a decent amount of charming and handsome fans away from Wrigley, is their insistence on acting like a small market team when they are the only big market team in the NL Central.

They should have spent every year since their breakthrough in 2016, bullying the competition around them and setting up something of a Cold War with the Dodgers in the National League.

The Cubs have claimed a rededication to competitiveness of late, though only through B-grade free agents and rehab projects, one of which came up trumps when Cody Bellinger produced a down-ballot MVP season.

Finally, today, the Cubs acted as if they are the baddest man on Planet NL Central, and ripped away not just possibly the best manager in the game, but hired Craig Counsell away from the team that had been dunking on them for the past few years, the Brewers.

If Ross and Counsell had swapped places before last season, the Cubs win the NL Central while the Brewers finish up the track just enough to miss out on an expanded playoff field in a National League that is basically fallow behind the three good teams in it. Ross’s incomprehensible lineup decisions, loyalty to vets who were not producing, and confusing bullpen usage at times, while also not exactly instilling a discipline or sharpness into the rest of the team, held the Cubs back. While Nico Hoerner has been able to become a passable bat and premier glove at second base under Ross’s watch, pretty much every other young player has starved for playing time and then squeezed the bat into plasma with the rare opportunities, and quickly headed back to the cornfields of Iowa.

Meanwhile, Counsell has spent the past decade making chicken salad out of chicken leavings in Milwaukee.

It should indicate that the Cubs have serious plans for this offseason, as Counsell turned down the chance to work for his former boss David Stearns in Queens and would have had the pick of any other open job (and probably a few occupied ones).

And it’s about time. The Cubs should win the division in a walk most seasons, and now still should be able to outlast the rebuilds in Cincinnati and Pittsburgh simply because those two teams won’t spend to augment what they’ve developed. All the Cubs needed to do was act like it and today they have.

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