By hiring Jim Hendry to work in their front office on Tuesday, the New York Yankees are continuing to cherry pick the brain trust of that unmistakable National League powerhouse, the Chicago Cubs.
Reporter Bruce Levine of ESPN Chicago says that Hendry, who was Cubs general manager from 2002 through 2011, will serve as a special assistant to Yankees' GM Brian Cashman. Hendry joins Larry Rothschild — New York's pitching coach — and Lou Piniella, who is joining the YES Network as a broadcaster and will work as a spring training instructor. Rothschild was pitching coach for the Cubs from 2002-2010, while Piniella was manager from '06-'10.
The Cubs should have a word with the Yankees about this.
And that word is "poachers!"
All kidding aside, it's a bit surprising that the Hendry-Piniella-Rothschild triumvirate would end up in the same organization after leaving the Cubs. And no matter how easy it seems to make fun of the Cubs, the Hendry-Piniella-Rothschild combo was on watch during a very successful — we use that term relatively — period in team history. Hendry and Rothschild were in charge for three division titles, while Piniella was at the helm for two NL Central flags (but no playoff victories).
Hey, it compares quite favorably to nearly any other era in the long, often painful history of the Cubs. No wonder the most successful team in the majors would want to siphon the executive/coaches who helped create that success.
It's just too bad the Cubs couldn't get any Theo Epstein-esque compensation in return.
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