ESPN financial wizard and obsequious Twitter blowhard Darren Rovell showed up at Cubs camp last week for a sit down of the only two guys unironically still pasting their hair into place with copious amounts of pomade.
Rovell played all the hits in three minutes of your life that you’ll never get back.
It starts with Tom saying, “If someone would have told me you could Theo as your baseball operations [sic], you could have Joe Maddon as your manager, you can have Jon Lester as your ace and you can have the number one farm system in baseball, would you take that? Â You’d be like…yeah.” Â You’d probably also hope that somebody would take Todd’s tax write off bike shop off your hands, too.
Rovell: “Describe the momentum in Chicago. Â It feels like people are more excited than ever before.”
Nah, mostly they’re bitching about Edwin Jackson.
Ricketts: “Things have really changed. Â The first few years we owned the team, folks were like, ‘what are the Ricketts like?’ ‘What am I like?’
And one weirdo just kept asking us who really owns the team.
“Then we hired Theo, and the question kind of shifted to, ‘What’s Theo going to do?’
And I could get back to what I really like to do. Â Which is wander around the stands and have fans bitch at me for signing Edwin Jackson.
“And now, people are asking, what’s going to happen on the field?”
And, when are you going to put pants on the creepy mascot?
“We have a team that will compete and we think that we’ll win our division,”
And other things that are batshit crazy.
Rovell: “How do you make the decision to be the winner in a marketplace that agrees to pay a guy $155 million dollars?”
Ricketts: Â “In the case of signing a big free agent like Jon Lester we trust our baseball organization to make the right recommendations and we let them allocate their resources as they see fit.”
“Obviously Jon’s a great leader and a great pitcher. Â There’s a lot of reasons why the guys would say that’s a good way to allocate your dollars.”
And we took out a huge life insurance policy on him. Â If he doesn’t pitch well, he might fall down a flight of stairs, or into a huge hole that we have dug in the parking lot next to the ballpark. Â Notice, I said, “might’, there, Darren.
Rovell: “You’re spending about five million dollars a year in Joe Maddon. Â What’s your thought on how much a manager can affect the game?”
Ricketts: “Fact is, you know that a charismatic leader that can relate to players, help guys stay focused during a long season, help players get along, keep that energy positive in the clubhouse, you know that’s critical to a successful team.”
Plus, Joe knows some magic tricks, so we can make some extra cash off of him and Ryan Dempster and rent them out to kids’ birthday parties. Â Talk about parallel tracks of revenue.
Hey, we’re paying Ricky Renteria a million bucks this year and next to stay away and NOT manage this team. Â We’re serious about this shit.
Rovell: “What has it been like for you, that honestly the casual fan would show up to Wrigley, and they might not know, or have heard of a single player in the lineup. Â Those days were there.”
Ricketts: “The fans have been great.”
And if they didn’t know who Starlin Castro or Anthony Rizzo were, well, I guess the only redeeming part of them being that dumb is that dumb people spend their money poorly, so those are the ones we can sell a ton of bison dogs to.
“As you know, I spend every single game walking through the ballpark talking to people, talking to regular fans. Â They’ve been very encouraging and they keep saying, ‘Look, stay on plan, don’t panic, we’re behind you, just do it the right way.'”
Apparently the right way includes strapping Edwin to a rocket and blasting him into outer space and trading all of our prospects for any of the Uptons.
“There were some dark days. Â But honestly, the fans help you get through it.”
No big deal, we’ve just had a few off years. Â Basically every year since radio was invented.
Rovell: “Obviously, you haven’t won the World Series since 1908.”
“Back to the Future II has the Cubs winning the World Series in 2015. Â How much stock do you put in that?”
Ricketts: “Well, obviously we’re going to win the World Series in 2015 because of that movie.”
Rovell:Â creepy laugh Â “Michael J. Fox throw out the first pitch if you get to the World Series?”
Because nothing would get the crowd fired up more than watching some poor guy in mid-stage Parkinson’s trying to throw a baseball.
Ricketts: “I can see bringing in Marty McFly for a first pitch, yeah.”
I’d like to take a run at his mom while he’s here, too.
Rovell:Â weird music starts playingÂ “For a long time the Cubs got the label of being lovable losers, how do you feel about that label?”
Ricketts: “We hate the lovable loser thing. Â That’s not us. Â We’re here to win.”
I can’t believe you even brought it up. Â Keep it up, and see how your personal brand is affected by having two broken legs, Darren.
“Obviously Wrigley is a great experience, maybe the best experience in live sports.”
Especially for the opposing team’s fans.
“People have a great time there. Â We’re happy for that. Â We encourage it. Â But the fact is, we’re not about lovable losers, we’re here to win.”
Now if you’ll give me a second, I’ll show you the plans for our branding arch.