CHICAGO – Theo Epstein knew it was time to move on, even though it meant leaving the team he loved. After nearly a decade as general manager in Boston where he won two World Series titles, Epstein decided change would be a good thing.

“After 10 years, no matter how passionate you are, you see the same issues, day after day and you are around the same people day after day,” Epstein said. “You are around the same landscape day after day for 10 years and eventually you will benefit from a new landscape and fresh problems.”
Fresh problems? There are plenty of those in Chicago.

Epstein was introduced as the new president of baseball operations for the Cubs on Tuesday, going from one team that ended its long championship drought while he was at the helm to one desperately searching for a title after more than a century of futility and frustration.

There is so much work to do, from building a strong minor league system and sharp scouting to putting together an evaluation system that is on the cutting edge. All while trying to win with moves that make sense.

Epstein, 37, left the Red Sox with a year left on his contract as general manager. The teams made the announcement Friday night, but held off on the news conference until Tuesday, a travel day for the World Series.

Epstein got a five-year deal worth a reported $18.5 million. The Cubs and Red Sox still have to hash out compensation for Epstein and a Major League Baseball spokesman confirmed that Commissioner Bud Selig has set a Nov. 1 deadline or else he will mediate the issue.

One of Epstein’s first decisions will be deciding the future of Manager Mike Quade, who has a year left on his two-year deal.

BLUE JAYS: Toronto doesn’t intend to let Manager John Farrell leave for the same job with the Boston Red Sox.

The Jays issued a statement that said employees won’t be permitted to leave for the same job in another organization – essentially blocking a move by Farrell back to the Red Sox.

Farrell spent four seasons as Boston’s pitching coach before being hired to manage the Blue Jays last year. The team finished fourth in the AL East with an 81-81 record in his first season on the job.
On Sunday, the Boston Globe reported the Red Sox had interest in bringing Farrell back as manager.

TWINS: Right-hander Joe Nathan will get a $2 million buyout after Minnesota declined the club option on the closer for the 2012 season.

DODGERS: Season-ticket holders were given an official voice in the team’s bankruptcy case, winning two seats on the team’s creditors committee.

ROYALS: Kansas City hired Dave Eiland as its pitching coach. Eiland was a former pitching coach for the Yankees.