We’ve all been marveling at Mike Quade’s descent into madness this season. How is Mike crazy? Let us count the ways: wacky lineups, playing Blake DeWitt, leaving Ryan Dempster in to throw 128 pitches in a meaningless game, and then there are the ejections.
Chicago Cubs manager Mike Quade was ejected in the eighth inning of Sunday’s 3-2 loss to the Houston Astros after disputing the umpire’s placement of runners after a home run call was reversed to a double.
On the play, both Castro and Pena pulled up after Foster indicated the hit was a home run. Without that call, both players could have kept running. Quade felt Castro had a chance at scoring had he been running freely and should have been awarded home plate.
“OK, Marty has a decision when it’s a home run or not,” Quade said. “But he also has a decision where the runner is. I don’t understand how he can do both. I don’t know how you can do that.”
This latest ejection got Mike into the Cubs’ record books.
For a franchise that has had such fiery managers as Leo Durocher, Don Zimmer and Lou Piniella, it’s shocking that Quade’s ejection tied a franchise single-season record of seven, owned by Johnny Evers in 1913 and Frankie Frisch in 1950.
“In retrospect, maybe they got this right today,” Quade said. “I’m not positive that Castro could have scored. But a couple of [my ejections] were really unwarranted — the ones in Pittsburgh and Milwaukee. The other ones I earned.”
Does anyone else suspect that Quade might have seen this as his only chance to get himself a record as manager of the Cubs? He started the year knowing he had a horrible team, looked through all the single-season records for managers, and thought, “Hey, I could get ejected a bunch and go down in history!” If so, kudos, Mike.
At least Starlin Castro is still good.
Starlin Castro doubled to lead off the first inning for the Cubs Sunday for his National League-leading 195th hit. He now has reached base safely in a career-high 31 straight games. Castro is the first Cubs shortstop to have a streak that long since Woody English had a 32-game run in 1930.
Despite having such a good year, he still hates playing on a crappy team.
“It’s not good,” he said of the Cubs’ terrible season. “It’s better when the team wins. Everything happens more easy then. You don’t have to work so hard because everyone is good.”
“Sometimes I feel a little tired [mentally], but not every time,’’ he said. “I’ll rest after the season for a little while and then start working out. I don’t know about winter ball yet.’’
Castro lights up at being mentioned with Banks. “It makes me feel real good,’’ he said, smiling.
“It’s a pretty good year for me, and I will try to do it every year — make the All-Star team and get 200 hits and help the team win. That’s my first part — to help the team win.
“It’s more fun when you’re on a winning team,’’ he said. “Everyone is happier and it’s easier. I hope next year is better. We’ll see.’’
Sorry, Starlin. I don’t think next year will be better. But hang in there, and we will too.