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updated: 9/28/2011 8:15 AM

Quade says he's focused on the game

Ramirez says players to blame for bad season

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  • Mike Quade may be down to his last day as Cubs manager when the team takes the field Wednesday in San Diego.

      Mike Quade may be down to his last day as Cubs manager when the team takes the field Wednesday in San Diego.
    Associated Press

 
 

SAN DIEGO -- Cubs manager Mike Quade said Tuesday he is not looking past Wednesday's season finale against the Padres.

"I try not to," he said. "Everybody's different. Stay focused on the next two games. I've never drawn a circle on the calendar and said, 'Two days to go. One day to go.' Let's play good baseball for two days and take the winter off."

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Wednesday's game could well be Quade's last as manager of the Cubs even though he has a contract for next season. The Cubs will name a new general manager in the coming weeks, and that GM may want to go in a different direction.

Any speculation on who the new manager will be is premature. Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts is expected to allow his new GM to name his or her own manager.

"I don't know what the team is going to do," said third baseman Aramis Ramirez. "I don't think it (the Cubs' poor record) is his (Quade's) fault. You can bring here whoever you think is the best manager in the big leagues is, and I don't think it's going to be any different. The bottom line is, as players, we didn't get it done. I don't think the manager has a lot to do with it. That's the way I see it."

Ricketts already has said farm director Oneri Fleita and scouting director Tim Wilken, along with many of their key people, will be back.

Ready to be crowned:

Shortstop Starlin Castro lined the first pitch of Tuesday's game into left field for a single. That marked the 39th consecutive game in which Castro has reached base.

The single also extended a hitting streak to 10 games, his fifth double-digit hitting streak of the season.

Castro entered the game leading the National League in hits (204) by 12 over the Dodgers' Matt Kemp.

The 21-year-old Castro will finish the season as the youngest player ever to lead the NL in hits. He will be 21 years, 188 days when the season ends. Before this year, the youngest player to lead the NL in hits was the Cubs' Charlie Hollocher in 1918.

Home-run happy:

Aramis Ramirez returned to the starting lineup after missing five games with a strained right quad. Ramirez led off the fourth inning with his 26th homer. The Cubs have three players with at least 25 homers: Ramirez, Alfonso Soriano and Carlos Pena. Pena drew his 100th walk of the season Monday. That is only the 12th season of at least 100 walks by one player in the history of the Cubs.

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