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updated: 4/16/2013 10:44 PM

Cubs execs Epstein, Hoyer share Boston's pain

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Cubs President Theo Epstein and general manager Jed Hoyer have strong ties to Boston from their days living there and working for the Red Sox. So Monday's bombing tragedy hit home for both men.

"All my thoughts were with my hometown and the people of Boston," Epstein said. "Just a horrific thing that happened, surreal that it happened. I used to live about a block from there. The city is really shaken, but it's really resilient."

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Epstein's brother ran in the marathon but is safe.

"He had finished about 45 minutes before the attack," Epstein said. "We (the Cubs) had our midpoint draft meeting. We were sitting in the draft room. Someone saw something on Twitter. My brother had actually called me after he finished and told me had just finished and run a decent time.

"When it was clear something was happening with an explosion in Boston, I tried to call him. Cellphones were down, but I got ahold of him within about 20 minutes."

Hoyer noted the importance of Patriots' Day for Boston and all of Massachusetts.

"It's a day that's unique to Boston and unique to Massachusetts, and everyone has a great time and lives it up. For the rest of the country, most cities don't have that one holiday that's unique to them."

The Cubs have stepped up security around Wrigley Field, removing garbage cans from proximity to the exterior of the park. There was a stepped-up police presence in the area, as well.

"Everyone who works in sports has a responsibility to be extremely vigilant," Epstein said. "We have large crowds on a daily basis. They trust us with their safety, and obviously, it's difficult to keep large numbers of people safe. You have to take every precaution. We take a lot of precaution already, but we've ramped up security even tighter today in the aftermath of what happened yesterday and will continue to do so. I think people in sports have an added obligation."

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