For Craig Counsell, the chance to manage the Cubs was one he couldn’t pass up

CHICAGO (AP) — Craig Counsell was ready for a new challenge and couldn’t pass up the opportunity to manage the Chicago Cubs.

The Cubs hired the 53-year-old Counsell away from Milwaukee last week, landing the former big leaguer with a record contract and firing David Ross in a pair of surprising moves. He became the majors’ highest paid manager with a five-year contract worth more than $40 million.

“I just thought that a new challenge was where I had to push myself,” Counsell said Monday at his introductory press conference.

Counsell led the budget-conscious Brewers to five playoff appearances in six years, including three NL Central titles. His contract expired at the end of the season, making him one of the biggest managerial free agents in recent years.

His 707-625 record gives him the franchise record for wins and games managed. The one blemish on Counsell’s resume was the Brewers’ inability to perform as well in the playoffs as they had in the regular season. The Brewers have lost nine of their last 10 postseason games.



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