Renteria? Cubs fans are not impressed
After 105 years of black cats and goats, Leon Durham and Steve Bartman. the Cubs are just a little overdue for some good luck.
But forgive the North Side fans if Wednesday's news didn't send them dancing into the streets, tossing their good-luck charms into the trash and ordering their 2014 World Series champions gear.
After a managerial search that included talk of World Series winner Joe Girardi, reported interviews with guys like new Tigers manager Brad Ausmus, and interest in red-hot coaching candidate Torey Lovullo of the Red Sox, Chicago's lovable losers have reportedly settled on their man . . . Rick Renteria.
Sure, Renteria is a World Series hero with two franchises — but that's Edgar Renteria.
So what do we know about Rick? Well, he has a pretty special birthday.
The Savior has come. Rick Renteria was born on December 25th, so perhaps sharing a birthday with Jesus will help bring the #Cubs luck?— Patrick Giblin (@patrickgiblin) November 7, 2013
But in terms of baseball pedigree, well . . .
A .237 hitter who played in 184 games over five seasons with the Pirates, Mariners and Marlins in the late '80s and early '90s, Rick, 51, has been the bench coach of the NL West powerhouse Padres since 2011, and in the San Diego dugout for the last six seasons. He did get some managerial experience with Mexico in the World Baseball Classic in March.
But ultimately, the news didn't exactly leave Cubs fans, nearly all of whom have never seen their team win a championship (their last title was in 1908), how shall we say it . . . ? Enthused.
How long has it been again?
105 years RT @AP: Chicago Cubs set to hire San Diego Padres bench coach Rick Renteria as their manager.— Vicky (@foursixthreeDP) November 7, 2013
Wait . . . are you saying managers don’t exactly view the Cubs as a dream job?
And others think this is just a ploy by GM Theo Epstein to buy more time until he can build a championship-caliber roster.
Greenberg: Renteria, Cubs won't be long union: Expect manager's post to be fleeting on Cubs team short on talent, wins, interest— Adicto al Sexo (@elmaniatico07) November 7, 2013
Rick Renteria? What's a Rick Renteria. I hear future ex cubs manager. Hey Rick RENT don't BUY— ¿johncub31 (@CalCubby17) November 7, 2013
In fact, several reports out there echo those sentiments.
A partnership not built to last?
This process doesn't bode well?
But hey, at least some media reminded Cubs fans of what could have been.
Even one of Chicago's most famous sports fans was willing to take the job.
When Epstein showed up just after the end of the 2011 season, he did so after breaking baseball's most famous curse, turning nightmares of the Bambino and Buckner into two World Series titles (and Boston won its third in 10 seasons just last week).
But he joined a franchise which averaged more than 82 wins per season the previous five seasons (though was 0-6 in playoff games over that span). In his first season, Epstein's Cubs won just 61 games — its fewest in a 162-game season since 1966. But this season saw a five-win improvement, so he has them on the right track.