Today was a sad day for baseball. One of the great managers of our generation put on a major league uniform on for the last time. Lou Piniella who has been in baseball for 48 seasons, and his 23 as a manager. Piniella had already stated that he was going to call it a career at the end of the season and the Cubs have not played up to par this year.
He missed sometime away from the team earlier this season for his Uncle’s funeral. Earlier this month he missed a road trip to be with a 90 year old ailing mother. He returned to the team and apparently his mother is not improving and he decided that it was more important to tend to his mother rather than sink with the Cubs of the rest of the season.
He is 14 all time on the wins list for Managers. Although he never had any association with the Rangers, I still feel that baseball lost a great today. I like traditional baseball, I like the Joe Torre’s, Bobby Cox’s, Tony La Russa’s of the baseball spectrum. I love to see a manager spend most of his life chasing a game he loves. Personally, I could only wish I had the opportunity to work for a MLB team.
The Cubs have promoted third base coach Mike Quade to be the interim manager. One interesting thing about this placement is former Cub and Hall of Famer Ryne Sandberg has been serving as the manager of the Cubs Triple-A affiliate. It has been widely considered that he would possibly replace Piniella once he stepped down. If the Cubs were serious about Sandberg as the manager they would have promoted him today.
The Triple-A manager being promoted to the big league club happens pretty often. Earlier this season when the Marlins dismissed Fredi Gonzalez they promoted Edwin Rodriguez who was the Triple-A manager in New Orleans. Later on this season, when the Mariners dismissed Don Wakamatsu, they promoted Triple-A manager Daren Brown from Tacoma to the big league club.