The Chicago Cubs are going to have a new manager for the 2011. As Lou Piniella has announced today that he will be retiring after the season. We all knew that Lou would be retiring this year, but we now officially that he will not be back as Cubs manager next season.
Here is what Lou Piniella Said in a Press Release.
"“I couldn’t be more appreciative of the Cubs organization for providing me the opportunity to manage this ballclub,” Piniella said in a statement. “I’ve had four wonderful years here that I wouldn’t trade for anything in the world. I’ve grown to love the city and the fans but at my age (67 at the end of the season) it will be time to enter a new phase in my life. It will enable me to spend more valuable time with my family – my wife, my kids and my grandchildren. God has blessed me to have been able to work this many years in the game that I love.“Why make this announcement now? Jim Hendry asked me in recent weeks regarding my future with the team and I told him I had made the decision to retire at the end of the season. Since my decision has now been made, I don’t want to mislead anyone about my intentions when asked in the future.“But more importantly, announcing my decision now is what’s best for this organization in the long run. It gives Jim Hendry ample time to find the next manager and he doesn’t need to do so in secrecy. The Cubs are one of the greatest organizations in baseball. I care very deeply for this organization and want nothing more than for it to experience present and long-term success. I’m proud of our accomplishments during my time here and this will be a perfect way for me to end my career."
Lou Piniella’s tenure as Cubs manager will probably be considered to be a failure. As Lou has lead the Cubs to two playoff appearances in his 4 years (including this year), and he has not won a single playoff game as Cubs manager. Lou will probably best be remembered by Cubs fans, as a former great manager that has been on his retirement tour since he first became the Cubs manager.
If you ask me, I think the Cubs basically told Piniella that they would not be bringing him back next season, and suggested to him that he should announce his impending retirement now, instead of getting fired at the end of the season.
The removal of Lou Piniella as Cubs manager is probably the first step in a very long process that the Ricketts have in store for the Chicago Cubs. However, it is uncertain on whether Tom Ricketts will pick the new manager, or General Manager Jim Hendry will have those duties. It is not even known whether or not Jim Hendry will be the Cubs general manager in the off-season. Nonetheless, the Cubs are going to have to find a manager that knows the game of baseball through and through, and focuses on the fundamentals.
The early candidates to replace Lou Piniella as given to us by Paul Sullivan are Ryne Sandberg, Joe Girardi, Bob Brenly, Joe Torre, and Alan Trammell. At this point I feel that Sandberg is the best option for the Chicago Cubs. He has been a part of this organization for the past 4 seasons, and he has relationship with a lot of the young players that are going to be playing for the Chicago Cubs in the near future. Joe Girardi is probably not going to leave the Yankees after the season, as he will likely be offered an extension. Bob Brenly could be an option, but he has yet to show any signs of wanting the Cubs managerial position. I do not think that Joe Torre or Alan Trammell are good options for the Cubs, because they are basically another version of Lou Piniella.
Tom Ricketts, Jim Hendry, and Lou Piniella will hold a press conference at 4:15 that will be aired on Comcast Sportsnet.