Five things Theo must do to fix Cubs
Take on the goat
When Theo Epstein helped the Red Sox finally win a championship, all anyone could talk about was how he ended the Curse of the Bambino. Now he’s got to shoulder the Curse of the Billy Goat. We think the new general manager needs to parade the Cubs’ modern-day goat in public to show he’s not afraid of a silly curse. Calling Steve Bartman.
Purchase therapy for Carlos Zambrano
All the rumors point to Big Z heading to Ozzie Guillen’s Marlins, but maybe Epstein still sees something left in the 30-year-old hurler. Hey, Pedro Martinez was kind of crazy and he won a ring.
Don’t deal Starlin Castro
The shortstop is only 21 and has the makings of a cornerstone player after hitting .307 with 66 RBI and 22 stolen bases. He needs to improve his defense, but Epstein needs to start somewhere and probably wouldn’t deal a franchise SS. Wait a sec — isn’t this the same guy who once traded “Nomah” Garciaparra . . . to the Cubs?
Hire a bunch of Cubs fan favorites for the coaching staff
We get it. Cubs die-hards want former second baseman Ryne Sandberg to save the franchise as a manager. So why doesn’t Epstein fulfill their wishes completely? Mark Grace as a bench coach. Shawon Dunston, hitting coach. Ferguson Jenkins is your new pitching coach. Sammy Sosa? Head trainer.
Get rid of Alfonso Soriano
With a bloated contract that lasts through 2014, Epstein has to figure out a way to send him packing. It’s simple, actually: He needs to swap for a left fielder with an expensive deal who was a gargantuan disappointment last year, which sounds a lot like . . . Carl Crawford.