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The Chicago Cubs’ search for a new manager is clearly entering the home stretch, as the team’s owner and chairman Tom Ricketts has interviewed each of the four most likely candidates.

Ricketts would not comment on the managerial search but a source confirmed he has interviewed each of the candidates.

Mike Quade, who has spent 17 seasons managing in the Minor Leagues, compiled a 24-13 mark when he took over for Lou Piniella, and has talked to Ricketts along with Ryne Sandberg, a Hall of Fame second baseman who played 16 seasons, all but one for the Cubs. Sandberg was named Pacific Coast League Manager of the Year after a successful season at Triple-A Iowa. It was his fourth season managing in the Cubs’ Minor League system.

The four also include Eric Wedge, who managed the Indians from 2003-09, compiling a 561-573 record. Bob Melvin also has interviewed for the Cubs job. He managed the Mariners from 2003-04 and the D-backs from 2005-09, and has a 493-508 record in seven seasons combined. cubs.com.

The team has still not announced a timetable for making its decision, but you can bet that they’d like to have a manager in place shortly before the end of the World Series so that they’re ready to go when free agency and the trade season kick in.

Based on how frequently the four are mentioned in connection with the Cubs, you’ve got to believe the order of likelihood right now goes Quade, Sandberg, Wedge, Melvin. Don Wakamatsu remains a possibility as well, and the Cubs would still like to talk to Joe Girardi if they’re given a chance.

  • CubsFanatic

    Quade or Sandberg for me. Sandberg should get the shot though. I mean if he can do what he did with our Triple A team with the Cubs, We’ll be playing in October next year. Though Quade should be a close second.

  • Raymond Robert Koenig

    Girardi if he’ available. Then Quade or Sandberg.

  • steven j

    I’d say give the spot to ab inhouse guy, so sandberg or quade. But I’d favor sandberg, if cubs choose quade, we really can’t expect to see sandberg in the cubs system next yeah, he wants to manage a big league team, and I think he has paid his dues in the cubs system working his way up. A major plus could be, he has seen most of our prospects over the last few years that may make it to the big club soon….

    • Ace

      Interestingly, no team has contacted the Cubs to ask permission to interview Sandberg. That could be out of deference to the Cubs, but it could also be because none of the other teams with openings believe he’s a good candidate.

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