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Theo Epstein Reportedly Reaches Agreement With Chicago Cubs; Life About To Get Tougher For Pirates

WEEI reports that the Chicago Cubs have agreed to terms with Theo Epstein for a five-year deal worth upwards of $15 million. It's not yet clear what his title will be, but he'll effectively replace Jim Hendry

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This is significant for Pirates fans because it should improve one of the Pirates' division rivals a great deal. Epstein wasn't a perfect general manager with the Boston Red Sox, but he was a thoughtful one, which means he should be an easy upgrade for the Cubs. Also, in the past decade, the Cubs organization has often appeared indifferent to player development and the minor leagues in general (or maybe just really bad at those things), and Epstein will change that. With the Cubs' payroll, and the weakness of the National League relative to the American League and to the AL East in particular, there's no reason the Cubs shouldn't be a regular contender in the NL Central, and under Epstein, they probably will be. That will make things even tougher on the Pirates.

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For more on the Chicago Cubs, check out Bleed Cubbie Blue.

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Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.