Piniella, La Russa managed to stay in the game

Posted7/24/2010 12:01 AM

Old friends Lou Piniella and Tony La Russa met behind the batting cage Friday before Piniella's Cubs beat La Russa's Cardinals 5-0 at Wrigley Field.

The two men grew up together in Tampa. Earlier this week, Piniella announced his retirement from managing.


"He's a very honest person, if that's what he's feeling," La Russa said. "He loves the game. I know he means it right now."

La Russa began managing with the White Sox in 1979. Piniella started with the Yankees in 1986. Both were asked if managers today will stay in the game as long as they both have.

"It depends on what age you get started," Piniella said. "The media demands are greater now. Before you had the beat writers. You didn't have all the different networks and so forth. Players today don't tend to play as long as they used to. I would say that probably managing will be the same way."

Asked what's changed most since he started, La Russa said: "Media and money."

La Russa also was asked how he handles questions about whether he'd be interesting in succeeding Piniella with the Cubs.

"I just ignore it," he said.

More pitching than talking: Carlos Zambrano threw 15 pitches (10 strikes) while allowing 2 hits in a rehab appearance Thursday for Class AAA Iowa as he comes back from anger-management treatment.

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Zambrano did not talk with the media, and Lou Piniella says Zambrano should address his teammates first. The Cubs suspended him after a dugout tirade directed toward his teammates June 25 at U.S. Cellular field.

"I think it's more important for him to clear that hurdle first, and once he does that, he talks to the media," Piniella said. "I think that's the right approach. We're just going to let him talk to the team, whatever he wants to say. Whenever he gets here, we'll have a little meeting and let Carlos say what he needs to say."

Zambrano could return to the Cubs at the end of the upcoming road trip to Houston and Colorado.

Ouch, that hurts: Cubs rookie pitcher Andrew Cashner has been fined by Major League Baseball for hitting the Dodgers' Blake DeWitt with a pitch on July 11. MLB apparently deemed it retaliation for Dodgers pitcher Vicente Padilla hitting Marlon Byrd earlier in that game.

For a good cause: "The Chicago Cubs Cookbook," edited by Carrie Muskat of, is now on sale. Proceeds from sales go to the Dempster Family Foundation. Cubs pitcher Ryan Dempster's daughter, Riley, is battling DiGeorge syndrome, a disorder that impedes her ability to feed and swallow. The colorful book features recipes by Cubs players, coaches and front-office people.

The book sells for $16.95. For more info, go to

Roster move: The Cubs activated reliever Brian Schlitter (shoulder impingement) off the disabled list and optioned reliever Jeff Stevens to Class AAA Iowa.


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