Hendry Accepts Blame

Cubs general manager Jim Hendry was holding onto the slim hope that the Cubs can get on a red-hot streak and make a run at the National League wild card.

"We're not out of it, but we'll need one hell of a run to get back in it," Hendry said last week. "I didn't expect near the end of August to be under .500. We had a little hiccup here, and hopefully we'll play well the last five weeks and hopefully we still have a chance. And if we don't, hopefully we'll finish over .500."

But the Cubs continued their losing ways by dropping two out of three to Atlanta and two out of three to Florida, and Hendry dealt LF Matt Lawton to the New York Yankees in an apparent concession that the Cubs will not make the playoffs.

Hendry is placing the blame for the Cubs' failures squarely on his shoulders.

"Absolutely," Hendry said. "I'm in charge of the product on the field. I hold myself accountable first if it doesn't work the way we want it to."

The main problem with the Cubs was they were too streaky. They looked like world beaters when they won seven in a row and enjoyed another span in which they won eight out of nine. But they also had three skids of seven or more games.

"When things don't go well or ... as planned, you have to look at the big picture of why they didn't," Hendry said. "Obviously we haven't played consistently. We've shown spurts of being very good and shown spurts of being very bad.

"Every time it looked like we were getting over the hump, we would have a setback. For whatever reason, it just hasn't worked. We've had some injures, but a lot of clubs who are winning have had injuries, too."

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