Power Lunching with a Legend: Mike Quade
“If you love what you do, keep doing it and hope for the best.” — Mike Quade
Ask any Chicagoan to list their favorite things about their hometown, and you can bet the mortgage that the Chicago Cubs would be at the top of their hot list. On Tuesday, April 19 Cubs Manager, Mike Quade (pronounced KWAH-dee) gave fans something to feast on (in addition to big prime steaks and legendary desserts) when he talked the art of baseball during a sold-out ESPN Radio’s ‘‘Lunch With a Legend’’ series at Morton’s The Steakhouse in downtown Chicago. During the live taping of ESPN 1000′s The Waddle & Silvy Show, we found out the Evanston-born legend rides the CTA, lives around the corner from Wrigley Field and a perfect day in June would include (surprise!) … a Cubs game. The following are some of our favorite excerpts from the live broadcast:
Marc “Silvy” Silverman: You managed this team last year on an interim basis but then got the job right after the regular season ended. You went through your first Spring Training as a big league manager and now you’re a bout a month into the job. How would you sum everything up?
Quade: It is a dream come true and something I’ve worked really hard to get an opportunity to do. I was prepared for this and I think things are going well. I had a blast last year and felt comfortable the last six weeks. We’ve put together a great staff and I knew the players coming into camp. We can play better baseball there’s no question, but these guys give me a quality effort every night.
Silvy: We want to know who Starlin Castro is. Is he a lead-off guy or is he more a Number 3 guy, more like a Aramis Ramirez? Who is Starlin Castro?
Quade: I think that’s what we’re all going to find out> Starling will tell us who he is. It’s always like, “What are you going to do with this guy?” Those guys make the lineup; I don’t. Everybody thinks that I do, but normally a player will help do that for you so we toyed around with putting him in the one-hole. The kid’s great. He’s an exciting offensive player but I’m probably more happy that he’s doing such a great job defensively.
Tom Waddle: How good can he be defensively?
Quade: Very good. He’s got great range and a strong arm. He just turned 21 and have to tell myself that when I get frustrated and mistakes are made. More times it’s lack of experience then lack of talent. He likes to work and he really likes to play the game.
Silvy: We hear about the different approach of managers. What is your situation like – do you keep the door open in your office? Are you mingling with players before the game? What’s your approach to dealing with the players and their personalities?
Quade: Door’s open. I like the banter and the back-and-forth with them. I think they know they can have a little fun with me but there’s always got to be a little bit of a line there. I try to get as close to it as I can. I want them to feel comfortable. I’m an open book with these guys and that’s the way I always want it to be.
Silvy: What was it like to coach under Lou Piniella?
Quade: It was an experience that’s for sure! He’s a tough son of a gun and he doesn’t like losing a game of jacks. You’re on your toes constantly, especially being his Third Base Coach. That’s the toughest place to be. Our relationship over the four years got so good. I still call him for advice.
Waddle: Are you enjoying the experience or are you so involved in your job that you don’t even realize that you’re the manager of the Chicago Cubs?
Quade: I love managing and like the daily work involved, whether it’s putting lineups together or talking to players about what you expect from them that night. I am having fun and people always say to take a minute and enjoy it. I’m enjoying every minute.
Click here to learn more about Morton’s ‘Lunch with a Legend’ series throughout the U.S.
WHO’S YOUR FAVORITE MLB MANAGER? MORTON’S WANTS TO KNOW!