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Cubs snag Lou Piniella

Discussion in 'Other Sports' started by geeimsobored, Oct 16, 2006.

  1. geeimsobored

    geeimsobored Contributing Member

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    http://sports.yahoo.com/mlb/news;_y...RvLYF?slug=ap-cubs-piniella&prov=ap&type=lgns

    Piniella to manage Cubs
    By RICK GANO, AP Sports Writer
    October 16, 2006

    In this Monday, Oct. 9, 2006 picture, Fox commentator Lou Piniella watches Oakland Athletics batting practice in Oakland, Calif. Piniella was expected to be introduced Tuesday, Oct. 17, 2006 as the new manager of the Chicago Cubs, a baseball source told The Associated Press on Monday, Oct. 16, 2006.
    AP - Oct 16, 3:10 pm EDT
    More Photos

    CHICAGO (AP) -- Lou Piniella's coming to Wrigley Field, agreeing Monday to a three-year contract to manage the Chicago Cubs and accepting a job that has long been one of the most challenging in baseball.

    His assignment: Get to the playoffs and win a championship with a franchise that hasn't been to a World Series since 1945 and hasn't won one since 1908.

    "I feel terrific about Lou. I think he's a tremendous baseball man and a proven winner from the beginning of his career," Cubs general manager Jim Hendry said Monday.

    "I think he's absolutely the perfect choice as we move forward."

    Piniella, who will be introduced Tuesday at a news conference, has a deal that is worth about $10 million.

    "I'm basically a blue-collar-type manager that believes in a good work ethic, preparation and a desire to win a baseball game," Piniella told the Chicago Sun-Times over the weekend in Detroit where he worked the ALCS for Fox TV.

    Piniella replaces Dusty Baker, another veteran manager with a strong resume, who left after four years when his contract was not renewed following a 66-96 last-place finish in the NL.

    Piniella has 19 years' experience managing in the big leagues with four teams -- the Yankees, Reds, Mariners and Devil Rays -- and said his work in TV and a year away from the dugout on a daily basis refreshed him.

    Known for his fiery style and outbursts with umpires -- in which he's thrown his cap, flung a base and kicked dirt on the plate -- the Cubs hope Piniella can be the spark the team obviously lacked during the final two seasons of Baker's tenure.

    Joe Girardi, fired by the Florida Marlins after one season and a former Cubs player, also interviewed for the job as did Cubs broadcaster and former Diamondbacks manager Bob Brenly. Mike Quade and Pat Listach, managers last season in the Cubs' farm system, also were interviewed.

    But Piniella's experience, his toughness and run of success that included a 1990 World Series title with the Reds were obviously factors that impressed the Cubs.

    The hiring of Piniella is the latest move in a Cubs' overhaul that began two weeks ago when chief executive Andy MacPhail resigned the day before Baker's contract was not renewed.

    Now Hendry will begin refiguring his roster with decisions ahead on third baseman Aramis Ramirez, who can opt-out of his contract; center fielder Juan Pierre, who is a free agent; and oft-injured pitcher Kerry Wood. The club has a $13.75 million option on Wood, who is rehabbing a torn rotator cuff.

    The 63-year-old Piniella has a record of 1,519-1,420 and was honored as AL manager of the year in 1995 and 2001.

    He became the Cubs' top choice over Girardi, who had two different playing stints with the team that he broke in with in 1989.

    The Cubs nearly reached the World Series three years ago, getting within five outs before a collapse against Florida in the NLCS. But Baker couldn't get the team back to the playoffs.

    Piniella began managing in 1986 with the Yankees, where he lasted three years. He managed the Reds from 1990-92, leading them to a World Series championship in his first season. During his time in Cincinnati, he got national attention for a clubhouse wrestling match with reliever Rob Dibble.

    From there it was on to a long run in Seattle from 1993-02. His 2001 team went 116-46 but lost in the ALCS to the Yankees. His 1995 and 2000 Mariners teams also were beaten in the league championship series. During his decade in Seattle, the Mariners won at least 90 games four times.

    Piniella won 93 games his final season with the Mariners in 2002 before heading home to his native Tampa to try and build a winner for the Devil Rays.

    But ultimately he had a difference of opinion with ownership and questioned management's commitment to winning before the team bought out the final year of his four-year contract.

    Piniella had an 18-year career as a player, 11 of them with the Yankees, and was a career .291 hitter.

    AP Baseball Writer Ben Walker in New York contributed to this report.
     
  2. RunninRaven

    RunninRaven Contributing Member
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    This should prove to be entertaining.
     
  3. Mr. Brightside

    Mr. Brightside Contributing Member

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    crap, now I gotta hide my wallet every time I go to Chicago.
     
  4. Faos

    Faos Contributing Member

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    Will he hire Steve Lyons as his hitting coach?
     
  5. Mr. Mooch

    Mr. Mooch Contributing Member

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    Maybe his b****ing coach?
     
  6. RocketMan Tex

    RocketMan Tex Contributing Member

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    :D

    Director of Minority Relations/Community Outreach Representative

    :D
     
  7. MadMax

    MadMax Contributing Member

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    still the cubs.
     
  8. imoffg33

    imoffg33 Member

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    i like piniella. look at it this way, the cubs couldnt do worse than baker
     
  9. Luckyazn

    Luckyazn Contributing Member

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    link

    Source: Piniella expects Cubs to go hard after A-RodBy Gene Wojciechowski
    ESPN.com



    CHICAGO -- Lou Piniella, who will be formally introduced as the new Chicago Cubs manager Tuesday afternoon, wants to acquire embattled -- and possibly available -- New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez.



    Tom Szczerbowski/US PRESSWIRE
    A-Rod, fresh off another forgettable postseason performance, spent his first seven big league seasons under Lou Piniella in Seattle.
    Sources familiar with the situation told ESPN.com that Piniella, who is extremely close to Rodriguez, expects the Cubs to aggressively pursue the 10-time All-Star. The 63-year-old manager and the 31-year-old Rodriguez have what amounts to a quasi-father/son relationship; Rodriguez was managed in Seattle by Piniella from 1994-2000. It is that relationship -- and the tantalizing talent of Rodriguez -- that has prompted Piniella to want to explore a trade with the Yankees.

    Despite the Yankees' insistence that they have no intention of trading Rodriguez, the former two-time American League MVP seems to have alienated fans and perhaps even teammates with his postseason failures. For the second consecutive year, Rodriguez failed to drive in a run and helped contribute to an early exit by the Yankees, most recently a 3-1 Division Series loss to the Detroit Tigers. In the final game of that series, Rodriguez was dropped to an unheard-of eighth in the batting order. He finished the series 1-for-14 with no extra-base hits and is 4-for-41 (.098) with no RBI in his last 12 postseason games.

    Rodriguez has a no-trade clause and could veto any proposed deal. But the idea of playing for Piniella, in the slightly less-pressurized Chicago market, and for a franchise that loves star power could appeal to Rodriguez. So could a chance for a fresh start after a .290-35-121 regular season that wasn't good enough for Yankees fans.

    For the Cubs, whose management experienced the rare and unnerving sight of empty seats at Wrigley Field this past season, the attraction of Rodriguez is obvious. He would immediately strengthen a lineup in dire need of power. He is normally an accomplished defensive player. And despite his postseason difficulties, he has a career .305 batting average and 464 career home runs in 13 major league seasons.

    With the hiring of Piniella, it is understood that the Cubs will expand their payroll, which was close to $100 million in 2006. Depending on how much they want to spend, the Cubs are one of the few teams capable of taking on Rodriguez's salary. He is owed $95 million for the remaining four years of the landmark 10-year, $252 million deal, he signed with Texas. The Yankees are responsible for paying $66.6 million; the Rangers are paying the other $28.4 million.

    A Cubs deal with the Yankees potentially could include third baseman Aramis Ramirez (career highs of 38 home runs and 119 RBI in the regular season), but Ramirez can opt out of his contract and become a free agent this offseason. It is thought the Yankees would also want a quality starting pitcher in any deal involving Rodriguez.

    Piniella, who replaces Dusty Baker after the latter's four-season tenure in Chicago, agreed to a three-year deal, with a club option for a fourth, earlier Monday. He has hired most of his coaching staff and has decided, sources say, to retain Cubs pitching coach Larry Rothschild.
     
  10. krnxsnoopy

    krnxsnoopy Contributing Member

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    The Cubs are gonna be AWESOMELY GOOD when they get A-Rod!


    Naht.
     
  11. Angle02

    Angle02 Member

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    What would they have to give up to get him? I doubt A-Rod will make the Cubs AWESOMELY GOOD. It takes more than one person to turn the team around. I would expect the Yankees to at least ask for Prior.
     
  12. lalala902102001

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    The cubs will always be the Cubs. Nobody can make them a winner.
     

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