After Steve Lyons got booted from FOX for insulting former manager Lou Pinella “ and the irony that making a retarded comment on FOX can get you fired is pretty amazing “ two reports surfaced in Chicago that Lou Piniella (above) will be named the Cubs new manager. No doubt seeing a perfect successor to the Steve Stone-Dusty Baker feud, both the Sun-Times and the Tribune appraise Piniella’s record and hiring as a fait accompli. Rick Telander, still pining away for the boy next door in Joe Girardi, takes Lou’s winning record into account, but worries that Lou might break all our hearts and run back East for the pinwipes:
But in 2003 he ended up in charge of the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, and disaster struck, as well as a lot of blame spewed toward front-office management.
It seemed everyone in the world knew the low-budget Rays could be an average team at best, except Piniella.
He fumed, fussed and guided his spark-less teams to three consecutive 90-plus-loss seasons, ending his stay in his hometown of Tampa with a 200-283 record.
What I see in Piniella is a guy who will marvel at the Cubbie culture of failure and always have an eye turned to the East.
If Torre, who has one year left on his Yankees contract, retires or is fired next year, who do you think wants his job so badly he can taste Nathan’s hot dogs from here?
Girardi, on the other hand, is an Illinois boy who has rooted for the Cubs, played for the Cubs and sees the Cubs’ managing job as the end of the rainbow.
Ironically, the Marine-coiffed Girardi also played for the Yankees, sat at Torre’s right hand as a coach and won three World Series rings with the Yankees.
He has his eye on what’s going on out in the Apple, too.
Taking the crown from old Joe and managing the Yankees wouldn’t bother young Joe at all.
The difference between Girardi and Piniella is that Girardi would be thrilled to take the Cubs’ reins and be the main guy at Addison and Clark for the next 15 years.
Piniella wants to get in and out fast. Too fast, if you ask me.
Of course, the Washington Nationals job mixes in here, too — for Girardi, at least.
But it’s those damned Yankees who are messing with the Cubs.
And it’s Piniella who pines for them most.