Lou Piniella pulling for Mike Quade

As Mike Quade awaits word on his fate as Chicago Cubs manager, his former boss sympathizes with his difficult position and hopes the new front office gives him a chance to return.

"It's not something that any manager would want -- to be put in that situation," Lou Piniella said Monday on "The Waddle & Silvy Show" on ESPN 1000. "Mike's a good baseball man, and he did everything humanly possible this year with the Cubs. I hope that they consider him and give him an opportunity to go forward. But it's not an easy spot for him right now, and I sympathize with him."

New Cubs president of baseball operations Theo Epstein and general manager Jed Hoyer met with Quade late last week, according to a source familiar with the situation. Quade has one year remaining on his contract for $1 million.

If Quade does not return, Cubs Hall of Famer Ryne Sandberg is a fan favorite to take over. Piniella said the decision is up to the Cubs, but he believes Sandberg, who managed the Philadelphia Phillies' Triple-A affiliate after managing in the Cubs' minor league system, is ready for a big league job.

"As far as managing in the major leagues, I think he's paid his dues," Piniella said. "... I think Ryne will be on the list of some of these clubs and hopefully he will get an opportunity to manage in the big leagues. I'm sure he's looking forward to that.

"But as far as the Cubs situation is concerned, the people that are going to make the decisions, they know what they want. I know Mike well, and I hope that they consider him and give him an opportunity."

Quade was Piniella's third-base coach before taking over as manager when Piniella retired in August 2010. Quade guided the Cubs to a 24-13 record to close out the season and had the interim tag removed by then-general manager Jim Hendry, who signed Quade to a two-year contract on Nov. 22, 2010.

The Cubs finished 71-91 and in fifth place in the National League Central this season.