The World Series is officially over, and for the first time in a calendar year the Cubs are not the reigning champions. Congrats to the Houston Astros on their first championship since their inception back in 1962, but what a fun ride it was for the Cubs. Back to the grind.
• The Cubs have undergone a major shakeup on the coaching staff. Eric Hinske and Dave Martinez each earned promotions, with Hinske becoming the hitting coach for the Los Angeles Angels and Martinez taking over for Dusty Baker as manager of the Washington Nationals. But third base coach Gary Jones, pitching coach Chris Bosio, and hitting coach John Mallee – a favorite of Cubs Insider readers – were all cut loose somewhat unexpectedly.
Bosio is objectively one of the best pitching coaches in the game, but it was an open secret that the Cubs had not exactly been thrilled with him at times. There was the instance where he publicly called out Eric Thames with absurd PED accusations during a spot on 670 The Score in Chicago, but Bosio also had differences with a handful of people within the organization.
Chili Davis and Jim Hickey are the notable names taking major coaching roles, and both are well-regarded around the league. The bench coach spot is still vacant as of now, and fans have created a wish list: David Ross, Ryne Sandberg, and Henry Blanco. This speaks to the obvious allure of the beloved former player, but of the three you’d have to imagine that only Blanco is an actual candidate (being that he already works for the organization).
Sandberg’s days as a coach seem to be finished, and his old-school approach probably doesn’t mesh well with Joe Maddon’s style. Most believe that Ross is a future manager, but he’s not exactly a fit with the Cubs as currently constructed. He’s very close friends with a ton of the players in that locker room, and the bench coach position needs to be Maddon’s right hand. It just wouldn’t be comfortable for either side.
• A handful of media members have taken issue with the coaching changes because of Maddon’s comments supporting those same coaches prior to Game 4 of the NLCS. We don’t need to rehash exactly how it all happened, but the bottom line is that some columnists and beat reporters have lambasted the Cubs for what was a clear lie on Maddon’s part.
While I was at Wrigley Field for Game 3 of the NLCS, I had an unfortunate family situation that kept me from making it to Games 4 or 5. So I wasn’t there to point the finger at whomever thought it was the right time to ask Maddon about the status of his coaches with the Cubs down 3-0 to Los Angeles. Had I been there, the eyeroll would’ve likely been loud enough to get picked up by MLB Network’s microphone.
The question was designed to back Maddon into a corner, and that’s exactly what it did. He had to show public support for his coaching staff, even though a shakeup was inevitable at that point. Now, we get unfortunate columns like the one Steve Rosenbloom wrote in the Chicago Tribune. Here is one of the more egregious lines.
That’s the biggest thing. Credibility and trust, see, aren’t just optics for the public. They’re concerns in a clubhouse, too.
Considering that I didn’t see Rosenbloom in the clubhouse once – in the regular season or playoffs – I’m very curious how he came to a conclusion about what, exactly, is concerning to those players.
Rosenbloom wags his finger at Maddon for lying, as if the manager hasn’t lied to the media whenever it was convenient ever since the day he first arrived. It’s his job to manage and protect the people inside the locker room (both players and coaches). If you think this is the first time Maddon has lied to protect his people, I have a condo in Florida I want to tell you about.