Attention, conspiracy theorists: This is right up your alley.
CSN Chicago's David Kaplan wonders if Mike Maddux pulled out of the running for the Red Sox managerial job because he's learned he's Theo Epstein's No. 1 choice to manage the Cubs. That would go a long way towards understanding why Maddux said no thanks to Boston, but is still willing to interview in Chicago.
Having been around Theo Epstein for 10 years, it's an easy theory to dismiss. If there's one thing we know about Theo, he never enters anything with a set of preconceived notions; were that the case, Terry Francona never would have managed the Red Sox. (Tito, thought to be a second- or third-tier candidate when he walked in the door, blew the Sox away in their face-to-face meetings.) It's unfathomable that Epstein would have picked a winner in the Cubs' search without having conducted a single interview.
Still, it does sort of explain the unexplainable . . .