For weeks, Mike Quade has been saying he expects to be back managing the Chicago Cubs in 2012. He’s got a contract for next year, so what else is he supposed to say?
But Quade, for all his failings this year, is not an idiot. He can read. He can deduce. The winds of change are blowing in Chicago, and he won’t be back in 2012. Just read between the lines on the many things Quade said after the final game of the year last night.
“There’s really nothing else you can do,” Quade said about the possibility of the next general manager wanting to make a change at manager. “That’s the only thing I worry about, is guys waiting and not getting a job if things don’t work out. I’ll do everything I can to keep them abreast the best I can.”
To me, that’s Quade’s coded message: I know I’m gone, and so most of my staff will be gone. But, please, don’t drag this thing out so long that none of us can find jobs for next year.
Quade went on about the GM search.
“No anxiety,” he said. “It’s always great when things are cleared up, one way or the other. You look forward to that day. I’m as anxious – I want to see who they’re going to hire and how that’s going to play out. I don’t do all the speculation or listen to the names. I’m more interested in concrete information. No anxiety.”
Who is he trying to convince? Us, or himself?
Of his meeting with Chairman and Owner Tom Ricketts after Jim Hendry was fired, Quade said he simply asked Ricketts to tell him the truth.
“And he did,” Quade said. “That’s all I want. I was able to tell my staff, ‘Look, this is not what we wanted or expected, but it is what it is.'”
Again, to me, that sounds like a guy who got the sense at that meeting that, while Ricketts undoubtedly told Quade that the 2012 decision would be up to the new GM, Ricketts wouldn’t be going to bat for him. And, without Ricketts fighting for Quade, everyone – including Quade – knows that this is the end.
But, hey, if he’s looking for a job, rumors suggest new Miami manager Ozzie Guillen could want Quade to coach third base. Keep those fingers crossed for a Quade-Zambrano-Ramirez reunion in Florida.