Here it is: I’m supporting Mike Quade as the next manager of the Chicago Cubs. Not that my support matters mind you. It’s just that this website is about opinions and mine is that Quade has earned his right to manage this team. Here’s why I feel we must give this man his chance:
- First of all it’s all about results. This team has been in a funk all year long with a payroll only exceeded by two teams. The Cubs traded some salary, and what happened? Performance went up and there’s a curious coincidence between when players/managers left and when results started happening. I don’t attribute this to bad management or performance; rather I wish to give *credit* when credit is due. Attitudes seem to be more positive, the bullpen is getting things done, and our starters aren’t getting clobbered as much. The players (Byrd and Dempster to name a couple) seem to be giving Quade some credit, so I will too.
- Resume – Sandberg has an impressive resume, he was my favorite going into this process, but has he coached 2300 minor league games? Does he have three years of major league coaching in his pocket? I’d love to see Ryno as bench coach – *learning* behind Quade and sharpening his skills, but given the choice and present reality I’m behind Quade.
- Organizational considerations – Mike Quade has the ear and confidence of GM Jim Hendry in what amounts to a turnaround year. The Cubs were expected to be a contender in 2010 and my sense is that they don’t intend to tear down this ballclub and rebuild. Sandberg would be my favorite in a rebuild, he has shown us that he can develop young ballplayers and I, for one would listen to this Hall of Famer were he my development coach. But is he ready now? Perhaps, perhaps not. This ballclub can afford to go with a safer alternative; besides that, Quade has plenty of experience working with young ballplayers. I saw him as Iowa’s coach – his style was very “hands on” both as third base coach on the offensive side and manager on the defensive side. He tended to position himself in the Iowa steps and he moved his defense around a lot based upon his scouting reports. In short I like the guy’s style.
So that’s my opinion and I’m sticking to it. I hope that Quade will get the job and I hope that Ryno will continue to develop his resume as Quade’s bench coach.