Cubs question umps after loss

Updated: July 17, 2011, 7:59 PM ET
By Sahadev Sharma | Special to ESPNChicago.com

Following a difficult loss to the Florida Marlins that put the Chicago Cubs 20 games under .500, manager Mike Quade refused to bite his tongue after his team was hurt by a blown call.

"I don't make a lot of excuses, probably could have gotten rung two or three times in this series alone," Quade said. "Been thrown out three times, young manager, all that crap, but it's getting tough to watch some of this. I get bang-bang, I have all the respect in the world for [the umpires] ... but there were a couple calls in this series that were mind-boggling and crucial, huge. Not just two out, nobody on stuff."

Quade was referring a questionable call at second base in the eighth inning. With two outs and men at first and second, Kerry Wood seemed to have picked off pinch-runner Brett Hayes, but second-base umpire Lance Barrett called Hayes safe. Hayes went on to score later in the inning and the Marlins tacked on two more runs, winning the game 7-5.

"It was a terrible call, absolutely terrible. I didn't make pitches after that obviously," Wood said. "Get in a situation where I need to get out of a jam, I put a [pickoff] play on with [shortstop Starlin Castro], we execute it. The umpire ... he's right on it, he's right there on top of it and butchered it."

Wood went on to say that the umpire didn't ever admit to blowing the call, but he's sure the crowd's reaction made Barrett aware of his mistake. However, Wood wasn't expecting Barrett to own up to his mistake.

"You know, honestly, he'll probably come back tomorrow and tell me that he got it right," Wood said. "That's what [umpires] do."

Quade alluded to some comments made by one of the umpires toward his players later in the game that he wasn't pleased with. However, he didn't get into specifics, only going as far as to say the comments were "out of character."

After watching so many questionable calls go against his team, Quade had a solution to the umpiring issues.

"I'm becoming a big fan of replay," Quade said. "I don't give a damn if it's slows the game down another hour. Give me a challenge flag or two."

Sahadev Sharma is a regular contributor to ESPNChicago.com.