10/20/2008 12:54 PM ET
Cubs, General Manager Jim Hendry agree to four-year contract extension
CHICAGO -- The Chicago Cubs and General Manager Jim Hendry have agreed to a four-year contract extension through the 2012 season. Terms of the contract were not disclosed.
"Jim Hendry has helped build a sense of urgency and create a winning environment throughout our organization," said Cubs Chairman Crane Kenney. "Jim's aggressive nature and tireless dedication to improving our club are well known but equally important is his assembly of one of the most-talented baseball operations departments in the industry.
"Jim's leadership and the continuity of our baseball operations department are critical to finishing the job we began six years ago. We fell well short of our goal this year and that will fuel our work this offseason."
"It's an honor to receive this long-term commitment from the Chicago Cubs," said Hendry. "We know there is work to be done in reaching our goal and I thank my staff for their commitment to this organization. We'll continue to do everything it takes to reward our great fans for their dedication to this team."
Hendry, who enters his 15th season with the organization, has been the club's general manager since July 5, 2002. With more than six years in the position, he already is the third-longest tenured general manager in franchise history, trailing only John Holland (1957-1975) and James Gallagher (1940-49). The club is 537-513 (.511) with Hendry as general manager, including four winning records in his six full seasons.
In 2008, Hendry, 53, became the first general manager in franchise history to assemble a Cubs team that made the playoffs in back-to-back seasons, as the club in 2007 and 2008 qualified for postseason play in consecutive campaigns for the first time in 100 years (1906-08). Overall, he has seen three of his six clubs make the playoffs (2003, 2007 and 2008), the lone general manager in club history to take three teams to the postseason.
Following a last-place, 66-96 finish in 2006, Hendry has helped orchestrate a 31-win turnaround the last two years as the club won 85 games in 2007 and recorded an N.L.-best 97 wins in 2008 to earn consecutive National League Central Division titles. In addition to resigning Aramis Ramirez and Carlos Zambrano to long-term deals, Hendry has landed notable free agents in the last two offseasons such as Alfonso Soriano, Ted Lilly, Mark DeRosa and Kosuke Fukudome while making key in-season acquisitions last season such as Reed Johnson (in March), Jim Edmonds (in May) and Rich Harden (in July).
Hendry joined the Cubs organization in November of 1994 and spent his first seven seasons with the Cubs as director of player development (1995), scouting director (1996-2000) and assistant general manager (2000-02), overseeing a Minor League system that signed and developed current Cubs stars such as Geovany Soto, Ryan Theriot, Carlos Marmol and Zambrano.
Prior to working for the Cubs, Hendry spent three years in the Florida Marlins chain in various roles, including a Minor League manager, a scout and a special assistant to General Manager Dave Dombrowski. He was the head baseball coach at Creighton from 1984-1991, leading the Blue Jays to a pair of NCAA Tournament appearances and earning National Coach of the Year honors in 1991 after Creighton finished third in the College World Series.