Perhaps it's not quite as prestigious as being named the world's greatest leader by Fortune, but Theo Epstein has another magazine honor to deal with.
The Cubs president of baseball operations landed on Time's annual list of the 100 most influential people.
Epstein wasn't the only sports figure on the list, joined by Cleveland Cavaliers supertsar LeBron James, New England Patriots championship-machine Tom Brady, Olympic gold-medal gymnast Simone Biles, Brazilian soccer star Neymar and lightning-rod quarterback Colin Kaepernick.
But the list also includes the highest-ranking officials in the U.S. government and other world leaders.
In fact, Epstein is listed in the "leaders" category, which is exclusively populated by the planet's biggest newsmakers: the heads of state of the United States, United Kingdom, India, China, North Korea, the Philippines, Russia, Turkey and Thailand; two U.S. senators; a Supreme Court justice; the Secretary of Defense; advisors to the presidents of the United States; the head of the Democratic Party; the director of the FBI; and, oh yeah, the Pope.
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Additionally, keeping in line with celebrities writing the blurbs for each of Time's honorees, Epstein is profiled by famous Cubs fan John Cusack.
Here's what Cusack wrote about Epstein:
"Theo Epstein has this weird hue around him. His vision helped end historic World Series droughts in both Chicago and Boston. But his power lies in a paradox, in the knowledge that the only way to keep power is to give it away. He knows Wrigley Field is a multigenerational secular church. Our families have been there a long, long time. We are all just renting — nobody owns this.
"Theo may be a creature of destiny, but he recognizes that he's also just another flawed human being, no better than anyone else. It's an artful thing to thread that needle and wear it as a matter of common sense. He's more Old World than old school. Words and deeds need to match. Trust is earned. He apologizes to no one for caring.
"You can see it in the eyes of those he holds close. The relationships are far more personal and dignified than people crowding around a winner. When you mention someone he truly reveres, like the historian Howard Zinn, Theo's poker face drops into a reverential smile.
"After that epic World Series Game 7, I found myself in the dugout watching first baseman Anthony Rizzo waving to the heavens. Theo was quite still — I watched him watch Rizzo. He must have felt it and turned to me, almost apologetic. 'I haven't given you a proper hug!' he said.
"'Greatest sporting moment of the century,' I told him. 'Thank you. And thank you from my father.' He took it but undercut his achievement with a wry smile. 'No,' he said, 'it's all about these guys.' Then he walked back into the fray."