Boston Red Sox fans woke up to great news on Friday as the team announced that Theo Epstein was returning to the franchise as a part owner and senior advisor. The 50-year-old previously served as the Red Sox general manager from 2003 to 2011, leading Boston to two World Series titles during that stretch.
Epstein left the Red Sox for the Chicago Cubs in 2011 to become the president of baseball operations in the Windy City. The Cubs made the playoffs five times during his tenure, which was highlighted by the 2016 World Series win that snapped the 71-year "Curse of the Billy Goat."
With Epstein returning to Beantown, it wouldn't be surprising if he wanted certain ex-Cubs to join him. After all, the Red Sox have missed the playoffs four times in the last five years, meaning they could use all the help they can get.
Here are three former Cubs that Epstein could potentially bring to Boston.
1. Jorge Soler, DH/OF
After Justin Turner left to join the Toronto Blue Jays through free agency, the Red Sox must address the designated hitter spot. There are still a handful of free-agent candidates who could fill that void and Jorge Soler is one of them.
The 31-year-old veteran slugger began his MLB career under Epstein, spending the 2014 to 2016 seasons with the Cubs. While his time in Chicago didn't last long, he still recorded 27 home runs with 98 RBIs through 211 games and even suited up in 15 postseason games during the 2016 World Series tilt run.
Soler has only gotten better since then, highlighted by 2023 performance with the Miami Marlins. Playing 137 games with the Marlins, the 31-year-old racked up 36 HRs and 75 RBIs with 66 walks while slashing .250/.341/.512 en route to the first All-Star appearance of his career.
Considering how the Red Sox must replace the 23 homers and 96 RBIs they lost when Turner departed, Epstein luring Soler to Beantown is a must.