Theo Epstein is moving out East, and Jed Hoyer declined to join him in Wrigley bleachers at going-away party because of optics

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Optics prevented Cubs president of baseball operations Jed Hoyer from joining former team executive and good friend Theo Epstein’s going-away party in the Wrigley Field bleachers last Friday.

Epstein is moving out East soon, Hoyer said on the Mully & Haugh Show on Monday morning, and before doing so, he had himself one last weekend of partying in Chicago. As part of that, Epstein and friends sat in the Wrigley Field bleachers during the Cubs’ 1-0 win against the defending champion Braves on Friday afternoon – and even had a photo shoot while laying in the basket at the conclusion of the game.

Epstein invited Hoyer – who took over as the Cubs’ baseball boss in November 2020 when Epstein resigned – to join the crew. Hoyer declined.

“He had a little bit of a going-away (party),” Hoyer said. “I saw him on Thursday night, and obviously he did the bleachers on Friday and enjoyed it. I guess when you come in here and deliver a world championship, you can lay in the basket. I think he’s earned. It was great to see him having a good time. At one point, I think in the eighth inning, he was texting me trying to get me to go out there. I’m like, ‘Theo, it’s a tie game in the eighth.’

“I stayed away and enjoyed the picture.”

The Cubs are 25-41 and in fourth place in the NL Central entering play Monday. They’re headed for their second straight losing season after a long run of success under the Epstein-Hoyer regime that included a championship in 2016. At the time of Epstein’s fun Friday, the Cubs were riding a 10-game losing streak before their victory against the Braves snapped it.