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Piniella endorses his coaching staff
By Bruce Miles | Daily Herald Staff
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Published: 7/2/2010 7:56 PM | Updated: 7/2/2010 7:59 PM

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While some are starting to ask questions about hitting coach Rudy Jaramillo, Cubs manager Lou Piniella gave a strong endorsement to his entire coaching staff Friday.

The Cubs' offense entered the day ranked 14th in runs scored in the National League before getting shut out 12-0 by the Reds. If there's one thing Piniella might suggest, it's a little less nose to the grindstone.

"They're tough jobs," Piniella said of coaching. "I am from the school that sometimes less is better. I think at times you can overwork. You play enough. You get enough batting practice on the days before the ballgame on the field. I think sometimes you relax your mind as opposed to keep pounding away.

"It's like the guy who has trouble hitting the golf ball, and he goes to the practice range and he pounds away and he pounds away and he pounds away, and by the fourth hole, he's tired and he starts hitting the ball all over again. I think that's a good correlation.

"I like the idea of sometimes just cutting back as opposed to continuing to pound away and pound away. I think it's the same thing with a pitcher."

Jaramillo came to the Cubs with much fanfare last fall after 15 years with the Texas Rangers.

"Rudy's had a lot of success," Piniella said. "The coaches that I have here are all excellent coaches. I endorse every one of them. These guys are professional. They care. They're available. And they want what's best for the player. Sometimes, it's almost better to back off a little bit and let ability take over."

Ugly numbers: The Cubs gave up a season-high 9 runs in the seventh inning, the most since they gave up 11 in the sixth inning on July 16, 2006, against the Mets.

Starting pitcher Ryan Dempster walked three batters that inning, as did reliever Brian Schlitter. The Reds' Jonny Gomes and Jay Bruce became the first Reds to score 2 runs each in an inning since Felipe Lopez and Sean Casey did so in 2004.

Minor matter: Right-hander Hayden Simpson, the Cubs' No. 1 draft choice this year, has been ill with a virus and has not been able to train, according to farm director Oneri Fleita.