Quade remains confident in reeling Cubs

June, 27, 2011
6/27/11
1:37
PM CT
Levine By Bruce Levine
ESPNChicago.com
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CHICAGO -- The Chicago Cubs limp back from Kansas City with the second worst record in baseball and have lost last six of nine despite winning the opening game in three straight series.

Asked how he is handling the tough times, manager Mike Quade referenced the Cubs' struggle to stay healthy: "Who loses 10 guys? You don't do that [lose 10] even in football. There are just certain things you can't be prepared for."

Quade's Cubs have had 10 players on the disabled list at times during the first half of the season.

One of Quade's former minor league players said Quade doesn't get down and depressed but gets more fiery when things get tough.

Former Cub and current Washington National Matt Stairs played for Quade at Double-A Harrisburg almost 20 years ago.

"He was our manager and we were in a horrendous hitting slump so he was throwing BP and took the screen away," Stairs said. "He dared us to hit the ball up the middle which is almost suicidal. Mike is only 50 feet away from us with no protection, but he was fearless trying to make a point. The second hitter in the cage hit a line drive that hit him about 100 mph in the midsection. The ball really smoked him, and you could tell he was in pain but he never went down. He yelled out 'Yeah, that's what I'm talking about.' Mike is that kind of leader."

With a banged-up team and a bad record, Quade still exhudes confidence about his team in the second half.

"I love what I do," Quade said. "I like coming to the park and working everyday. I love being around the kids and the veterans have done a nice job."

Quade, like everyone in the Cubs organization, is being scrutinized on a daily basis. But he chooses to ignore outside pressures.

"[The players] need us as a staff more than ever so you have to be there for them," he said.

Bruce Levine | email

Chicago baseball beat reporter
Bruce Levine has covered sports in Chicago for over 28 years and hosts "Talkin' Baseball," heard Saturday mornings on ESPN 1000.

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TEAM LEADERS

BA LEADER
Starlin Castro
BA HR RBI R
.292 14 65 58
OTHER LEADERS
HRA. Rizzo 31
RBIA. Rizzo 72
RA. Rizzo 82
OPSA. Rizzo .896
WJ. Arrieta 9
ERAT. Wood 4.86
SOJ. Arrieta 157