CHICAGO - AUGUST 28: Chicago Cubs manager Lou Piniella signals for a pitching change during the game against the New York Mets at Wrigley Field on August 28, 2009 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Lou Piniella
Today's Cubs game was manager Lou Piniella's last.
According to a release from the team, Piniella is stepping down after Sunday's game against the Braves, citing family reasons. At a brief news conference Sunday morning, Piniella said the failing health of his mother was a big concern.
"The best thing is to step down and go home and take care of her," he said.
The release included this statement from Piniella.
“I am thankful to the Ricketts family for their support – Cubs fans are fortunate to have an owner like the Ricketts family to lead this organization for the long-term. I also couldn’t be more thankful to Jim Hendry for bringing me to Chicago. We enjoyed a great deal of success together and I’ll always value the relationship we had during our time together. Thank you to Crane Kenney and the Cubs front office for your support throughout the years.
“I couldn’t be more appreciative of my coaches and training staff. They have been professional and supportive. And thank you to my players for the successes we shared and their efforts.
“Finally, to the Cubs fans, thank you for four wonderful seasons. You are the best, most deserving fans in all of baseball and it has been an honor to manage your ballclub.”
Cubs Chairman Tom Ricketts said he and his family "respect Lou's decision to retire from the game he loves."
Last month, Piniella announced he would be retiring, but said he'd finish out the season first. It isn't clear why his retirement came so suddenly on Sunday, but in the past, Piniella has said it doesn't have anything to do with the team's performance this season.
The Cubs named third-base coach Mike Quade manager for the remainder of the 2010 season, starting with tomorrow's game against Washington. Quade managed the last four seasons of Chicago's Triple-A Iowa affiliate, the I-Cubs.
Quade has spent the past 17 years managing minor league teams, and overall has a .510 winning percentage.
The remainder of the coaching staff will stay in place, according to the Cubs.