Red Sox

Report: Epstein to discuss Cubs future, may exit this year

Red Sox

After a decade each with the Boston Red Sox and Chicago Cubs, it appears Theo Epstein is ready to move to his next stop.

Epstein, who has been the Cubs' president since 2011, will meet with team chairman Tom Ricketts next week to discuss "the long-term plan for the baseball operations department," NBC Sports Chicago's David Kaplan reported Saturday.

Epstein's five-year contract runs through the 2021 season, and Kaplan reports it's "virtually certain" the Brookline, Mass., native won't look to sign another deal with the Cubs after that.

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In fact, Kaplan reports it's possible Epstein could leave Chicago this offseason.

"Sources confirmed to me that while the status quo is most likely, one of the possible scenarios that will be discussed is Epstein exiting now rather than waiting to complete the final year of his contract, which runs through the end of the 2021 baseball season, if that better positions the Cubs for their future," Kaplan wrote.

Epstein helped transform the Cubs from National League Central cellar dwellers to World Series contenders and ended the franchise's 108-year championship drought with a championship in 2016.

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But Chicago hasn't made it past the Wild Card stage in each of the last three seasons after bowing out to the Miami Marlins in this year's Wild Card round, and it appears both Epstein and the Cubs are ready for a change.

Epstein is just 46 years old, so he still has a bright baseball future ahead of him after building the Red Sox and Cubs into champions. Don't expect him to return to Boston in the near future, though, as Chaim Bloom is in his first year as Chief Baseball Officer.