Passing over the obvious choice, the Cubs have named Mike Quade their new manager, according to AOL Fanhouse.
Quade, who led the Wee Bears in 2010 after lame duck manager Lou Piniella decided to call it quits in mid-season, got support of several of the players for his interim work. He apparently made enough of an impression that the Cubs chose him over Class AAA skipper and fan favorite Ryne Sandberg for the permanent position.
Most Cubs fans I have talked to over the last year or so assumed that Sandberg was going to get the gig from the time Piniella announced that 2010 would be his last season on the bench. I have yet to hear any reaction from them or from Sandberg himself.
Sandberg might be miffed. And the cubs might lose him from the organization forever by passing him over. But it seems like the new regime in Chicago is trying to make a clear break from the team's knee jerk past.
The Cubs have often hired the biggest name to lead their team on the field regardless of their tactical abilities. And I was never quite sure that hiring a crabby senior citizen was the best way to go. Or if it was that great of an idea to hire notorious pitcher destroyer Dusty Baker and then hand him the keys to Kerry Wood and Mark Prior's careers.
Quade is a guy who has paid his dues and built a consistent resume based on fairness, clarity and communication. He deserves the chance.