In the ultimate swindle of a trade, Theo Epstein has completed the trade for himself – with himself. The former and now current Red Sox general manager came over to the Cubs in a deal requiring compensation for the Red Sox.

Sources say Epstein was working on completing the deal behind the scenes in a locked office before officially taking over the position for the Cubs. As part of the deal, the much-heralded executive included a clause that the Cubs would send shortstop Starlin Castro to the Red Sox and be on the hook for Epstein’s 2012 salary as well as cash compensation for the deal, which would be paid to him.

The unnamed source also stated that Epstein left with boxes full of office supplies and Jim Hendry’s old laptop.

“I have no idea what happened,” said a confused and sullen Tom Ricketts. “It appears the deal was legal. It looks like we’ve been had.”

It is unclear if Epstein masterminded the deal from the beginning by targeting the Cubs specifically. In a Red Sox press conference Epstein was barely able to contain his amusement: “I came to the Chicago Cubs with the full intention of continuing their rich tradition of excellence. I can stand here today and say I believe I accomplished that goal. Suckas!”

When asked how he felt about it, one local Cubs fan shrugged.

“This isn’t the first time we were robbed,” he said. “It happened with Hendry all the time.”