-Dale Sveum: (B-): No good Cubs fan blames the first year manager for 101-losses. And had it not been for Sveum’s strong leadership, it’s probably an even worse record.
Remember, this Cubs team could’ve mailed it in on several occasions…a 12-game losing streak, the trade of veterans at the deadline or the horrific beating by the Nationals in Washington, just to name a few. They never did, and that’s about the most encouraging sign for this team, and its manager, moving forward.
That’s not to say Sveum isn’t without fault, he certainly made his share of mistakes, too. But given the youth, inexperience, and at times, inexplicable bone-headed plays from his players, Sveum handled it all with poise and professionalism. There couldn’t be a better quality for a manager skippering a team on the rebuild.
-Dave McKay (A+): He proved to be one of the best acquisitions last offseason. His instruction responsible for Soriano’s improved defense was invaluable on its own, as was his coaching of base runners at first. The Cubs are very lucky to have this guy.
-Chris Bosio (B): His arrival was a first step in the right direction for the pitching staff. The starters thrived before the All Star break and the deadline departures of Ryan Dempster and Paul Maholm. More importantly, Bosio finely tuned Jeff Samardzija into a quality starter, oversaw the redevelopment of Manny Corpas, straightened out Carlos Marmol and survived the task of coaching a bullpen largely void of major league talent. Next season will test Bosio’s mettle even more, but it’s promising to think what he could actually do with an entire staff of major league quality talent.
-James Rowson (incomplete): Will he stay, will he go? We do know Rowson buys into the new regime’s patient plate philosophy, and it seemed the Cubs took kindly to Rowson after he replaced Rudy Jaramillo mid-season. You obviously can’t fault Rowson for the Cubs’ lackluster offensive production, but there’s a ton of work to be done between now and the end of spring training…and not much to work with. I imagine he won’t have the long leash Jaramillo did either.