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Most of coaching staff should return in 2010
By Bruce Miles | Daily Herald Staff
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Published: 10/2/2009 6:11 PM

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The Cubs have not made an announcement on the status of their coaching staff for 2010, but expect almost everyone back.

General manager Jim Hendry and field boss Lou Piniella may determine things by Monday.

"I said basically that I've been pleased with our staff, and I guess Jim and I will sit down and talk about this after the baseball season," Piniella said Friday. "They've all done a nice job."

Pitching coach Larry Rothschild is a shoo-in to return for his ninth straight season. Some feel Rothschild has enjoyed one of his better years under trying circumstances, given injuries to the Cubs' pitching staff. Cubs pitchers entered Friday fifth in the NL in ERA, at 3.81.

The one question that remains is hitting coach. Hendry personally replaced Gerald Perry in June and promoted Von Joshua from the minors.

The Cubs went from first in several key offensive categories last year to middle of the pack. They entered Friday ranked ninth in runs and on-base percentage, 13th in hits and fifth in home runs.

Expected back are bench coach Alan Trammell, first-base coach Matt Sinatro, third-base coach Mike Quade and bullpen coach Lester Strode.

No gold: Lou Piniella expressed disappointment, but good humor, over Chicago losing out on its bid for the 2016 Olympics.

"That's a shame," Piniella said. "The city of Chicago would have been a wonderful host. It's a shame that the city got eliminated, especially so quick. Great sports town and would have offered the international community a great venue."

On where he'd be in 2016, Piniella said: "Seven years from now, I'm going to be in Montenegro. I've always wanted to go there since I saw that James Bond movie ('Casino Royale')."

Pitcher Tom Gorzelanny, a Chicago native, also expressed disappointment.

"It would have been a great thing for the city to host something like that," he said. "It's unfortunate that it happened so quick. Nobody was expecting that. You could see all the shock on people's faces at the Daley Center today. Just hearing about everything that was going on and what they were going to do for it, it would have been a privilege to be a native and see something like that come to our city.

"It's disappointing, but I think they don't realize how great of a city we have as much as everybody who lives here and is from here and plays sports here and has grown up here."

Lee still out: First baseman Derrek Lee was not at the ballpark as he was taking care of personal business. Lee was a late lineup scratch for Thursday's rained-out game against the Pirates. Lou Piniella said Lee likely will be back today.

Making the best of it: Pitcher Jeff Samardzija, who will pitch winter ball in Mexico, said he made the best of Thursday's rain-shortened game, during which he pitched 3 innings, giving up 3 runs. All of that was wiped off the books.

"It would have been nice to go out there a couple more innings," he said. "Things happen. I felt good. Our game plan was to go out and really pound that down-and-away fastball in. Where we are right now going into winter ball, that's going to be a big pitch that I'm going to work on.

"The curveball was OK, and the changeup was real good, too. That's probably the best my changeup's been since I've been up here."