Mike Quade after blown lead, loss: “That was embarrassing”

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Cubs manager Mike Quade wasn’t very happy in the clubhouse after his team turned a four-run lead after six innings into a 7-4 loss to the Reds.

Here’s some of what he said:

That was embarrassing.That [stuff] has got to stop. And it’s everybody that was in that room for that meeting. Myself, the players and the coaching staff. It’s just not going to cut it right now. Nothing is [freaking] easy up here. You’ve got a nice 4-0 lead and “Z” is cruising and everything is hunky-dory. I’ve got news for you. It ain’t routine until the freaking thing is over. We’ve got to play that way. We’re not good enough to coast at all.

Anyone who can use the phrase “hunky-dory” in the same quote as the actual words represented by “[stuff]” and “[freaking]” is OK with me and I also appreciate Quade lumping himself and the coaching staff in with the criticism.

Quade went 24-13 after taking over for Lou Piniella last season, but so far this year the Cubs are just 17-22.

Pirates pitcher Steven Brault sang the National Anthem last night

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Pittsburgh Pirates swingman Steven Brault has a 4.38 ERA in 19 games this year. He also has a music degree and is a professional singer on the side of his baseball gig. He didn’t get into last night’s game against the Brewers as a pitcher, but he did get to use his singing skills.

Specifically, Brault got to sing the National Anthem. And he did an OK job of it too. He’s not Whitney Houston or anything, but he did what all Anthem singers who are not as gifted as Whitney Houston was should do: he kept it straight and businesslike, avoiding unnecessary flourishes:

It’s march, dang it, not a ballad, and it should be treated as such. Unless of course you’re Whitney Houston.