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Lou Piniella Rips Steve Stone - By Name!

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The Chicago Tribune is reporting that Cubs manager Lou Piniella angrily fired back at his managerial critics before today’s game against the Sox. And, abandoning his usual cautious and vague approach, Sweet Lou named names. To wit:

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And Steve Stone? He’s got enough problems doing what he does with the White Sox. What job has he had in baseball besides talking on television or radio? What has he done?

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Why isn’t he a farm director and bring some kids around? Why isn’t he a general manager, and put the uniform on and been a pitching coach? Why hasn’t he been a field manager. There’s 30 teams out there that could use a guy’s expertise like that. I’m tired of some of these guys, I really am. Now that’s it. Let’s go to baseball.

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Steve Stone’s contentious relationship with his former employer goes back years now. Much of the trouble started in 2004, when Stoney -- then the Cubs TV announcer -- repeatedly ripped into that year’s underperforming squad on the air and in the press. Many have speculated that Stone also holds a grudge because the organization never seriously considered him for an advisory role of any kind. And, of course, it doesn’t help he’s gone on to work for the rival White Sox.

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Lou hasn’t done much right this season. His team is struggling and, quite frankly, so is he. Struggling to figure out a lineup. Struggling to make the right pitching changes at the right time. And struggling to explain why this highly paid team is flat-out awful.

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But I’m going to give him some credit here. He’s finally showing some fire against a bitter blowhard who’s spent far too long taking snarky potshots from the relative safety of his TV booth at The Cell. There’s no doubt Stoney knows the game of baseball as it’s being played. But his ability to build and run a team are, as Lou says, unproven and dubious at best.

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To read the complete Trib breaking news story, go here.

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Update: Check the link above. Steve Stone has responded.