The Sporting News’ “expert” reporter Mike Berardino suggests that Lou Piniella might be the Cubs’ version of Jim Leyland. Berardino comes out with gems like this:
Piniella’s track record made him the top catch on the market this fall.
Not only does he report to duty with 1,519 career victories in 19 seasons, he has pulled off quick turnarounds before.
I pulled out the trusty old calculator and divided 1,519 victories by 19 seasons, and came out with about 80 victories/season. For perspective, Dusty Baker had 840 victories in 10 seasons before coming over the Cubs. That averages out to 84 victories/season. Go ahead and say, “But, Bad Kermit! Dusty had the best player in baseball when he managed the Giants!” And I say to you, “Wrong. Dusty had the second best player in baseball for most of his time with the Giants. Piniella had the best player in baseball in Ken Griffey, Jr. Piniella also had A-Rod, Steroid Boone, Edgar Martinez, Randy Johnson, Jay Buhner, etc., etc., while Dusty’s second best player was a motorcycle daredevil with a pornstache. Now, go make me a sandwich, imaginary devil’s advocate.”
Berardino lays another turd:
With Piniella, it’s simple: If you spend money and give him players, he’ll give you a winner.
So, Piniella is the MLB’s answer to Phil Jackson. Thanks, Mike. If you spend enough money, I can give you a winner, and I come a lot cheaper than Piniella.
More great reporting by Berardino:
OK, so the homecoming in Tampa Bay didn’t work out, but the former ownership didn’t hold up its end of the bargain, either.
Yes, so let’s brush off the time in his career when he actually had to manage, and blame it on the Tampa Bay ownership. Care to explain how the ownership “didn’t hold up its end of the bargain, either” or do you just want to make a sweeping statement and leave it hanging there? If Piniella didn’t know what he was getting into in Tampa Bay, he’s an idiot.
Free agent center fielder Juan Pierre is another top priority.
Juan Pierre was about as useful to the Cubs this year as a book is to Paris Hilton. He had a hollow 200 hits, only started hitting when the Cubs were hopelessly out of contention, sucked at stealing bases, and steadfastly refused to take a walk or see more than 3 pitches per at-bat. Resigning Pierre should be on Hendry’s priority list right about here:
1098. Resign Jeff Fassero
1099. Resign Juan Pierre
1100. Start wearing thong
So, in answer to your question, Mike:
Jim Leyland had an obvious and immediate impact with the Tigers this year, so why can’t Lou Piniella do the same with the Cubs in 2007?
Because Lou Piniella sucks.