A League of Her Own

Mike Quade: Great Manager? Or Greatest Manager?

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Photo courtesy Chicago Tribune

As it if werent enough that Mike Quade led the Cubs to their first sweep in 137 years, inserted guys with the best OBPs at the top of the lineup, and got Tylermania back in the game, now he's managed to beat the unbeatable Pirates and possibly cure Big z's nephew:.

"The Cubs treated Dawson to a lopsided win, as Aramis Ramirez drove in four runs with two of their nine doubles, and Carlos Zambrano homered while evening his record at 6-6.

"Everything now is heading in the right direction," manager Mike Quade said.

Zambrano is 3-0 with a 1.84 earned-run average since being put back in the rotation following his stint on the restricted list. He was as buoyed by the fact his 11-year-old nephew in Venezuela, who is in a coma with a bacterial infection, is doing much better after a grim prognosis last week.

"My nephew is getting better every day," he said. "It was a miracle in my family. He's not out of intensive care yet, but he's much better than 4-5 days ago when he was diagnosed with a 5 percent chance of (living)."

But even though he's rivaling Annie Sullivan in the miracle department, Quade doesn't expect anyone to hand him the manager's job:

"I hope the overall picture is taken into account, but I'm not doing the evaluation," he said. "Some of that I'm sure will be in the mix. Look, there are a lot of good baseball people out there and I get a chance to do this in front of people. We're going to try and win every ballgame obviously, and I'm sure wins and losses will be a part of it. To what extent, that's for the people evaluating me to answer."

Quade took a moment to look around the ballpark during the national anthem, thinking about how fortunate he is to have finally reached this position. It has been a long road to Wrigley, but the wait was worth it.

"It's not just about being here," he said. "But it's about where I've been, and I've been damn near everywhere, so this is a pretty good place to end up right now."

And if you couldn't sleep last night worrying about Geo Soto's knee, fear not! For all is well. Well, as "well" as things get this season, anyway:

Cubs catcher Geovany Soto was relieved Monday to find out he had no serious damage to his right knee.

Soto had an MRI on the knee before Monday's game, and he and the Cubs said there was no structural damage, only some minor swelling.

Soto said he injured the knee diving into second base on an eighth-inning double Sunday in Cincinnati.

Enough with the current Cubs. Let's get to the former Cubs and what we've all been waiting for, Mark Prior weighing in on Stephen Strasburg's injury:

Now pitching for the independent minor-league Orange County Flyers, Prior spoke Monday with Darren Smith on XX Radio in San Diego about the media scrutiny that puts pressure on young pitchers such as Strasburg, questioned why he was being asked about it and projected what's in store for the Washington star:

"I don't know why everybody wants me to comment on it," Prior said. I don't know why I should be commenting on it and where I have become the default ... expert would be the wrong word, but the guy to comment on it.

"Things have changed so much in the media and the attention and the focus of every little step. Maybe I was just a little naive to what was going on my first couple of years being in that situation. ... They just needed to let him go pitch. Let him be news in Washington. But I think the national attention got to the point that it was just comical and ridiculous.

"That's a lot of pressure on anybody, whether you are 22, 23 years old or whether you are 35, 36. To have that kind of scrutiny day in and day out where you are expected to go out and almost throw a no hitter is just unrealistic basically. I think we've said all along that it's unfortunate that he has to deal with this. But the Tommy John success rate is pretty good and he should be back no problem."

As for the most difficult thing facing Strasburg in his rehab, Prior said, "It's going to be the peripheral stuff. ... From talking to people, the elbow rehab versus the shoulder rehab is a little easier from a physical standpoint. From a mental standpoint, from the peripheral standpoint, it's a little different based on where he was drafted and what he's already accomplished. Let's not forget some of the things he's already done this year. It's not like he hasn't pitched at all. He did accomplish some things that were pretty incredible.
Really Mark? I have SOME idea why people want you to comment on it. I think it's because, even though the injuries are completely different, your arm also fell off at a young age. But I could be wrong, maybe they just think you're a huge Nats fan.
 
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Photo courtesy Chicago Tribune

And finally, let's get back to Andre's big night. Andre rightly figured out he wasn't getting out of Wrigley without making Cubs fans feel warm and fuzzy, After all, that's what they pay for
:
 

The Cubs honored 2010 Hall of Fame inductee Andre Dawson in a pregame ceremony Monday night at Wrigley Field before their game against Pittsburgh.

Dawson was introduced by chairman Tom Ricketts and presented with numerous awards, including a No. 8 from the center field scoreboard.

"I owe a great deal to the Montreal organization. But this is my home," Dawson said to a sparse crowd.

Dawson spent six seasons with the Cubs beginning in 1987, when he won the National League MVP award. Despite entering the Hall with an Expos cap, Dawson showered the Cubs fans and organization with praise.

"You are the greatest fans ever," he said. "Without you I wouldn't be standing here tonight."

Well, not at Wrigley Field, no. But maybe somewhere else.

And lest people think Andre was poo-pooing Sandburg's abiilities as Cubs manager, you shoud know that Andre thinks Ryno will do a bang-up job:

"I'm still kind of amazed that he wants to do it at this level," Dawson said. "It's different at the minor-league level when you're doing a little bit more evaluating and you're working with the kids and you're trying to get them to the next level. Here it's egos, attitudes, business and you're under the microscope a little bit more. Ryno, I never envisioned that as a player. He was a little bit more laid-back, quiet ...

"Maybe there's a different animal now that surfaced. But I wish him well. Anyone who wants to take that on, who wants that challenge, I really wish him the best. I think he'd do a good job at it. He's respected in that manner. He played the game the way he was supposed to play the game. He knows how to win the respect of his peers, of the players he'd be above.

"So I think he'd do very well at it, but initially if he's thrust in a situation where you're talking about winning right off the bat, it's going to be a little more complex for him. But I think eventually he's going to groom himself into an individual that's going to do a better than average job at it."

 So see? Ryno has Andre Dawson's stamp of approval--and he made us beat the Pirates 14-2!

And finally today:

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Photo courtesy Chicago Tribune

Well. . .   damn.

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23 Comments

plamorte said:

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neither, I vote for bestest.

Doc said:

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It was a nice speech that Dawson made last night...too bad only 10 people other than myself were there to hear it.

sloan peterson said:

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Reading the NYT article on Prior,they seem to stick most of the blame on Dusty Baker-not sure I agree...

Doc said:

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I personally blame Dusty for global warming, the war in Afghanistan, and the horrible headache I currently have. And while I don't place all the blame on Dusty, he did have some part in Prior's downfall.

plamorte said:

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Go read Doc's post today if you can, it's just logical and makes you wonder how awesome it would be if good thinkers with common sense like us ran the Cubs! FREE ICE CREAM FOR EVERYONE!!!

Doc said:

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I forgot ice cream...ugh!

baturkey said:

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Yeah, good post. Yankees bleacher tickets have a face value of $14!

Doc said:

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Yeah...but the problem with those tickets is that you have to sit around a bunch of yankee fans. And that, right there, reduces the value of those tickets by about 90%.

baturkey said:

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Is MLB Extra Innings prorated if you get it in the middle of the season?

Doc said:

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usually at the 1/2 point of the season, they reduce the cost by 1/2...

But if you were to get it now, you wouldn't get it at, say, 80% off.

baturkey said:

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I see, thanks.

cadarnell said:

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the folks at espn didn't see the cubs game last night I guess .... they had a Jay Bruce TOOTHBLAN as a top 10 highlight (pretty funny really) and the snubbed Tylermania and one of the best throws any right fielder has made all season ...dorks !!

JulieDiCaro said:

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and yes, i KNOW i spelled 'Sandberg,' wrong in my post. the dashboard won't let me change it. sue me.

Doc said:

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Um...no...we aren't going to sue you. You'd win. You're a lawyer. You'd use the Chewbacca defense.

JulieDiCaro said:

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The Cubs are having . . . wait for it . . . yet another ceremony. this time, for the re-installation of harry's statue out by the bleachers.

the fans aren't going to fall for this crap forever.

JulieDiCaro said:

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i don't think.

cadarnell said:

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they might fall for the banana in the tailpipe ... never underestimate the drunk ... haha

Carl Heartscubs Gierhan said:

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If we play this thing right, we might all get our own day before the end of the season.

Doc said:

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If you haven't had enough ceremonies, there's going to be another one soon for the dedication of the Billy Williams statue.

Doc said:

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Then on September 25th they are having a ceremony to honor Hector Villanueva. They are going to give him a used plastic beer cup and a Hello Kitty watch.

HackWilson09 said:

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There will always be weddings, there will always be funerals, there will always be babies being born...

And there will always, always be a good-sized crowd of moronic drunks hanging around Waveland and Sheffield.

Doc said:

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not yesterday.

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