Monday, April 11, 2011Posted: 9:45 PM
By Patrick Mooney
HOUSTON The day after, here was the image flashing on the television in one corner of the clubhouse: Marlon Byrd arguing with reporters before telling them to beat it.
The MLB Network ran the clip and while it may have caught the attention of a few players reclining in lounge chairs, the Cubs want the matter closed.
WATCH: Byrd snaps at reporters
Byrd led off the ninth inning of Sundays 6-5 loss to the Milwaukee Brewers with a line-drive single that raised his average to .342. Aramis Ramirez had already tied his career-high with three doubles when he stepped to the plate.
Moments later, Byrd was caught stealing second, a mistake manager Mike Quade called a miscommunication. Byrd couldnt believe that was the first thing the media asked him about. Byrd said he looks at third-base coach Ivan DeJesus.
I dont think he has the green light. Zeus didnt think (so), Quade said Monday. (Byrd) thought he did. (So) three of us screwed the thing up and then we move on and we try not to do that again.
That play didnt decide the game, but Byrds reaction generated all the headlines, and made it difficult to not blow out of proportion.
Quade estimated that he gives 60 or 70 signs each game offensive, defensive and catching. By the managers count, his players have only missed one or two through the seasons first nine games.
I wish (we) had a microphone to put in a guys helmet like they do in the NFL and say, Hey, look, youre gonna hit and run, Quade joked.
WATCH: Quade weighs in on the issue
Quade will not be standing on the top step of the dugout with headphones on and a play sheet covering his mouth. But he has tried to simplify the signs and still wants to pick his spots.
Quade once worked for an Oakland As organization that devalued stolen bases as part of their Moneyball philosophy. But for Quade, its mostly about the personnel. The Cubs finished tied for last in the majors in stolen bases last season.
Beyond the runner, the Cubs will take into account the pitchers time to the plate, what hes about to throw and whether hell use a slide step or a high leg kick.
We want to run intelligently, Quade said. I dont think people understand sometimes all the different factors that go into whether youre taking a shot to run or not.
Just because you dont have speed doesnt mean you dont take advantage of situations.
So given all the information thats synthesized into a split-second play, its probably not as simple as red light or green light, or safe or out, or Did I go?
Quade said the Cubs will turn the page, which is really just a nice way of saying the exact same thing as Byrd: Next question.
PatrickMooney is CSNChicago.com's Cubs beat writer. FollowPatrick on Twitter @CSNMooneyfor up-to-the-minute Cubs news and views.