Cubs Nation has spoken — more specifically, tweeted — and Theo Epstein is the voters’ choice for Cubs president in the kind of landslide usually reserved for the likes of Derek Jeter, Ken Griffey Jr. and Ronald Reagan.
If our five-question Election Day poll of fans showed anything definitively by the time polls closed Tuesday afternoon, it’s that fans want Epstein running their team through at least the final year of his contract, by a large margin over general manager Jed Hoyer — and by an even larger margin over Cubs cult-hero/left-hander Theodore Roosevelt Lilly (whose name certainly belongs on the Cubs’ Mount Rushmore, if not his face).
The only thing left here is for Epstein to accept the will of the people and announce he won’t step down before the end of his contract a year from now.
That and Jed’s concession speech.
The only other landslide result on the five-item ballot Tuesday came on the new-rules referendum, with the long-polarizing debate over the designated hitter apparently having run its course.
With all due respect to Fergie and Big Z, an overwhelming majority of fans chose the universal DH as the one-time 2020 rule they’d most like to see carried over into 2021 — by a more than 4-to-1 margin over seven-inning games for doubleheaders.
Fans, understandably, were more split on the which core players with one year left of club control they want to see stay and which they’d rather see traded or even non-tendered this winter because of the team’s cost-cutting.
Whether it qualifies as a surprise, given the rough 2020 season he had, Kris Bryant’s star has fallen significantly in the eyes of Cub-fan voters since he spent the early part of his career winning every available award in sight — including the 2016 MVP, which he was able to pair with that historic World Series title the same year.
But Bryant finished a distant third to winner Javy Baez and runner-up Anthony Rizzo in balloting for fan favorite to get a contract extension.
And only one-time postseason superhero Kyle Schwarber — attracting more than half the votes cast on a four-man ballot — garnered more votes than Bryant when it came to which of the four should be the first one traded or non-tendered:
Talk about “What have you done lately?”
The final down-ballot fan decision gave Reds ace Trevor Bauer a victory by a significant margin over Yankees batting champ DJ LeMahieu in the race for top free agent the Cubs should target if money weren’t an issue.
Of course, the financial realities of the Cubs winter might be the only thing in baseball tougher to square up than Bauer’s breaking ball.
Nonetheless, the votes have all been counted; the ballots, duly submitted.
And these results will become binding as soon as the Chicago National League Ball Club, LLC, certifies, notices and/or gives a damn about them.
Meanwhile, we can enjoy what's left of the fall weather. And wait till next year.