Lou Piniella will retire Sunday night from Major League Baseball. Lou Piniella is going to retire after the Chicago Cubs play the Atlanta Braves at Wrigley Field, and will walk away from baseball as one of the winningest managers in the history of the game. When he leaves the game, there will only be one manager that has more wins who isn’t in the Hall of Fame, all but punching his ticket to eventually walk those hallowed halls. Sure his career as a Major League Baseball manager hasn’t always been a smooth one, but what he could do was elevate many of the players that he had to work with.
During his time as a manager, Piniella was able to win 90 games in a season for four different teams, something that is extremely rare in this game. He has been a manager for 22 years, stretching from his work for the Seattle Mariners, Tampa Bay Rays, Cincinnati Reds, and Chicago Cubs during that time. It has seemed that recently the game was starting to wear on him though, and it apparently became time for him to leave baseball and work on other things in his life. It’s unfortunate that his career ends with such a struggling Chicago Cubs team, but those are the breaks of this game sometimes.
Piniella has one more game to add to his career totals, but coming into Sunday, he had an overall record of 1,835-1,712 as a manager. That includes a record of 316-292 with the Cubs, including back-to-back National League Central titles in 2007 and 2008, where the Cubs came up just short of returning to the World Series for the first time in years. Piniella did win a World Series title while he was in charge of the Cincinnati Reds though, as he led that team to a sweep of the 1990 World Series behind some very memorable bullpen coaches.
Lou Piniella is also in the record books for leading the Seattle Mariners to a baseball record 116 wins in the 2001 season, the most wins in a single season for an American League team in the history of the game. He brought success to the Mariners for the first time, and when he went to Tampa Bay, he instilled a new way of playing the game that elevated that team. Now fittingly, Piniella will retire from the game of baseball as he goes up against famed manager Bobby Cox of the Atlanta Braves on Sunday, August 22, 2010 at 2:20 p.m. EST.