Andy McPhail snubs Ryne Sandberg
Orioles President Andy McPhail, of the royal baseball McPhail lineage (grandpa Larry, dad Lee) had a chance to snag another ex-Cub and went another direction today by hiring non-nonsense manager, Buck Showalter. Recent speculation by Tribster, Steve Rosenbloom, had Sandberg on Andy's speed dial but it seems it wasn't so. The O's beat writer for mlb.com said the short list was former O's catcher Rick Dempsey, former Indians manager Eric Wedge and Bobby Valentine, who has recently volunteered his services as the next Cub manager.
Sandberg did add some fuel to the speculation when he was quoted in the Des Moines Register back on June 16th:
“The last time I talked to Andy was during the winter meetings, when we
were on a committee together,” Sandberg said before Monday night’s
Pacific Coast League game against New Orleans at Principal Park. “But
I’d listen if someone called, for sure.”
Since shedding the official Tribune Tower sweatervest worn as the Cubs President at the conclusion of the abysmal 2006 season and finding refuge in the tender clutches of Oriole owner Peter Angelos in June 2007, Andy has stocked the Orioles with ex-Cubs like the Statue of Liberty says (paraphrasing now):
"Give me your near retired, your poor fielders,
Your huddled masses short of breathe rounding third,
The wretched refuse of your teeming minors.
Send these, the homeless once Cubs, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the Orange Oriole door!"
We've all enjoyed his accumulation of cast off ex-Cubs. I shall list the names with Cub ties from the McPhail (Cub) era: Front Office: John Stockstill (Scouting/Farm director, previously O's Director of International Scouting); Manager/Coaches: Dave Trembley (former O's manager, minor league manager for the Cubs 1994-2002), Rick Kranitz (pitching coach), Alan Dunn (bullpen coach); Players: Steve Traschel, Corey Patterson, Felix Pie, Rocky Cherry, Scott Moore, Caesar Izturis, Paul Bako, Jake Fox, Luis Montanez, Will Ohman, Rich Hill.
Could you imagine the Chicago media frenzy if McPhail had named Sandberg as the next Oriole Skipper? If one imagines standing in the room where Tom Ricketts puts the phone receiver to his ear, while on the other end of the phone call, Jim Hendry tells the new Cub owner that beloved Ryno's gone orange. THUD.