It seems we’ve finally arrived at the value of Theo Epstein, the man/boy genius in the middle of a long, strange compensation struggle between two of baseball’s historically cursed franchises.
Boston’s former GM bolted for the Cubs’ presidency not long after the Red Sox’s epic collapse, but the transactional costs weren’t completed until Thursday, when Boston sent Jair (not Xander) Bogaerts to Chicago -- on the very day when (not that) Chris Carpenter, the first player Theo sent to Boston, underwent elbow surgery.
Call that bad luck, but is there something more happening in these seemingly minor transactions, after Theo had been (ironically) arguing all along that he’s really not worth much, while his replacement/former lieutenant, Sox GM Ben Cherington, had reportedly been asking for big leaguers like Starlin Castro and Matt Garza?
This is probably more coincidence than curse, but the second player the Sox received from the Cubs is named Aaron Kurcz.
To recap: Theo’s Cubs tried to restore Boston’s curse (Kurcz and a destined-for-repairs-Carpenter) ... And the Sox responded with “We already broke ours, so please, Bogaerts the curse for yourself.”
The assessment: If Theo’s worth were a Venn diagram, he’d be smack dab in the intersection between a billy goat, a Broadway show, a bottle of Jack Daniels, a Bartman, a case of beer and a bucket of chicken.
The winner: TBD. The aftershocks will no doubt be felt well beyond Opening Day. Our prediction? This one will be settled in the World Series ... in 2112.