Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Sweet Lou's Last Run

Cubs manager Lou Piniella has announced he will retire after this season, presumably after a Chicago loss in late-September. Piniella, who started his managerial career in 1986 with the Yankees, has been around forever. The only seasons he wasn't a manager were 1989 and 2006, and he's been in the dugout with five different teams.

Piniella guided the 1990 Cincinnati Reds to a World Series sweep over the A's, but since hasn't had a ton of post-season success. He had several great regular-season teams in his 10 years with Seattle. In the strike-shortened 1995 season, the Mariners won the AL West in a one-game playoff over the Angels and reached the ALCS before losing to Cleveland. The 1997 West champions were beaten in four games by Baltimore in the ALDS, and the 2001 team won a record-tying 116 games before losing to the Yankees in the championship series.

After a forgettable three seasons in Tampa Bay (200-285, combined 96 1/2 games out of first), Piniella was 46 games over .500 in his first three seasons with the Cubs (2007-2009), which included an NL-best 97 wins in 2008. But like 2007, when Arizona swept a first-round series (yes, the Diamondbacks were in the post-season as recently as 2007), Piniella's club was swept in the first round in 2008 by the Dodgers.

Here's a list of some players Piniella managed:

Don Mattingly, Rickey Henderson, Ron Guidry, Tommy John, Dave Winfield, Ken Griffey Jr., Randy Johnson, Edgar Martinez, Alex Rodriguez, Goose Gossage, Ichiro Suzuki, Fred McGriff

And here's another list of players Piniella managed:

Wayne Tolleson, Mike Pagliarulo, Bobby Meachum, Steve Trout, Lee Guetterman, Luis Quinones, Rob Dibble, Troy Afenir, Mackey Sasser, Wally Backman, Erik Plantenburg, George Glinatsis, Salomon Torres, Alvaro Espinoza, Ryan Radmanovich, Brett Hinchliffe, Desi Relaford, Terry Shumpert, John Rocker, Hideo Nomo, Rocky Cherry, Carmen Pignatiello, Esmailin Caridad

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