Theo Epstein, the president of baseball operations for the Cubs, is stepping down from the franchise effective on Nov. 20, the team announced Tuesday.
Epstein, 46, joined Chicago in 2011 and was instrumental in building the team that won the 2016 World Series, the Cubs' first championship since 1908.
Jed Hoyer, who, like Epstein, joined the Cubs in 2011, will be named the club's new president of baseball operations.
According to the New York Post's Joel Sherman, Epstein has previously told friends that he would try to run a team from the top, with a piece of ownership, which is not something he is likely to get with the Phillies or Mets, two teams rumored to be interested in him.
According to ESPN's Jeff Passan, Epstein outlined his reasons for leaving the Cubs in a letter Tuesday which he sent to friends. ""Next summer will be my first in 30 years not clocking into work every day at a major league ballpark," he wrote. "..."I do plan on having a third chapter leading a baseball organization someday, though I do not expect it to be next year."
“For the rest of my life, I will cherish having been part of the great Chicago Cubs organization during this historic period,” Epstein said in a statement. “All of the things that have made this experience so special— the fans, the players, the managers and coaches, ownership, my front office colleagues, the uniqueness of the Wrigley experience, the history— make it so tough to leave the Cubs. But I believe this is the right decision for me even if it’s a difficult one."
Epstein joined the Cubs in 2011 hoping to end Chicago's championship drought in much the same way he did with the Red Sox, in both 2004 and 2007.
"I firmly believe that we can preserve the things that make the Cubs so special and over time build a consistent winner, a team that will be playing baseball in October consistently and a team that will ultimately win the World Series," he said when he was first introduced.
Under his tenure, the Cubs made the postseason five times, amounting to two NLCS appearances and one World Series championship. Chicago won more than 90 games four times under Epstein, doing so every season between 2015 and 2018. Epstein’s Cubs have recorded 505 regular season victories since 2015, the second-most in the N.L. and third-most in the majors behind only the Dodgers and Astros.
In Chicago, he achieved his most success alongside manager Joe Maddon, who came to the Cubs after a successful stint in Tampa Bay before leaving the franchise after the 2019 season.
Hoyer, 46, joined the Red Sox in 2002 and went on to play a prominent role in the franchise's success in the 2000s. Hoyer was the GM of the Padres' between 2009 and 2011 before joining the Cubs alongside Epstein.
Last season, under new manager David Ross, the Cubs went 34-26 and were swept in the Wild Card round.