Sunday, May 14, 2006

A Divergence of Expectations

I'm disgusted with the way the Cubs are playing right now. They lost again today to the Padres and again got shutout (9-0). They have now lost 14 out of their last 17 games. Dusty Baker has been taking a lot of the heat for the "unusual" lineups he has been trotting out on the field and his inability to motivate his troops. The critcism of Baker is deserved, but in my mind, one of the most unusual things about this long struggle is the lack of comment and/or action on the part of GM Jim Hendry.

It seems to me that the current situation screams for some sort of action on Hendry's part, even if that action is to simply address the situation with the press and convey his thoughts, whatever they may be. Instead, Hendry has gone into hiding and hasn't said a word about his intentions.

Of course, as a fan, my expectations for the Cubs are different than the expectations the Tribune Company has for the Cubs. I want them to win a World Series and I expect them to do whatever it takes to do that. The Trib Co., on the other hand, simply wants to make money. For some teams, winning equals making money, but not for the Cubs. The beloved Cubs make money win or lose. It's a luxury that the Trib Co. takes full advantage of. It's not that they don't spend money. They do, but they don't spend it very wisely. That brings us back to Jim Hendry.

While Dusty is getting blasted by fans and the media, Hendry is getting a free pass from the only critiques that matter to him: Andy McPhail and the Trib Co. Unlike us fans, McPhail and the Trib Co. are happy with Hendry because the Cubs continue to make money. And as long as the losing doesn't negatively impact the bottom line, expect Hendry to continue as GM of the Cubs.


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