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Carol Slezak of the Chicago Sun Times recently described Lou Piniella as “tired, cranky and disinterested” in this year’s Chicago Cubs team. Lou did not take too kindly to that suggestion.

“I’ve been in it from the first day I’ve been here to the last day I leave here,” Piniella said. “I take pride in the team winning and playing well to please our fan base, which to me is the best in baseball. We work exceedingly hard here as a staff. If you want to stick around and be here until 1 o’clock, 1:30 in the morning when the parking lot is closed, and we’re having meetings on how we can get the team better, you’ll see we’re very interested and have a lot of pride.”…

“I take exception to that,” he said. “I can take criticism, believe me. Invariably in this business here, you’re going to have to be able to take criticism and you’re going to have to have a thick skin. But at the same time, at least be correct in your assumptions.” Muskat Ramblings.

It does seem easy to watch from a perch and believe that Piniella is not quite “in it” this season. The fire in his belly appears to have been extinguished years ago, replaced by a calming, folksy grandpa gut.

But it seems a stretch to take that observation and contort it into a view that Piniella is not passionate about this Cubs team.

Also, nerd pet peeve: Sleziak would have been much better served by using “uninterested,” not “disinterested.” Everyone uses disinterested these days when they are trying to suggest that someone does not really care about something. That word is “uninterested.” Disinterested means that you are neutral. And don’t go running to an online dictionary. I don’t care what it says.

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