CHICAGO -- Interim general manager Randy Bush respects the fact that Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts will target outside candidates for the vacant GM position, but Bush on Sunday alluded that the new regime could very well include some old blood.
While the Cubs’ front office positions remain in limbo, Bush said that Ricketts has continued to speak highly of the work that vice president of player personnel Oneri Fleita and director of scouting Tim Wilken have done.
“Tom has spoken about how happy he is and impressed he is with our scouting departments and player development,” Bush said before Sunday’s game against St. Louis. “He’s happy with Oneri’s leadership and Tim Wilken and I expressed to them that he has those feelings about the job that they’re doing and that certainly we could see a path we go down where you could see a lot of the things that are in place would stay in place.”
Fleita has held his current post since October 2007 and oversees the organization’s minor league system and international scouting operations. Wilken has been in his position since December 2005 and has helped sign and develop players such as Darwin Barney, Casey Coleman and Andrew Cashner. Ricketts gave Wilken the green light to sign the Cubs’ recent draft class to a combined $12 million in bonuses, the most the organization has spent on any draft class.
Bush said he had a conference call the other day with Ricketts and the Cubs’ scouting and player development personnel and Bush followed up today with another call to those same departments in an attempt to assure them he would do everything possible to provide a smooth transition in the interim.
Meanwhile, Bush said the team’s scouts are remaining on their regular assignments and have not been taken off the road. Asked what message he would give to the next Cubs general manager, Bush gave another endorsement to the scouting and player personnel departments.
“I would tell him that I believe we have done a great job recently of acquiring talent, that Mr. Ricketts has made a commitment both domestically and internationally to pursue the top talent available,” Bush said, “and that our player development people have done a great job of moving those players along at the right place to get them here where they’ll be here for a long time.”