Hendry on Managerial Search

It appears the top three candidates for the Cubs' managerial job are Lou Piniella, Joe Girardi and Bob Brenly.

General manager Jim Hendry is not saying who has the edge but says he wants to get the right man for the organization and would like to have the process of replacing Dusty Baker done by the end of the month.

"My preference is to do something in October," he said. "The perfect scenario is to have a manager before the organization meetings (in early November) and before getting into free agency. I don't think you can pursue free agents without a manager. In a perfect world you would like to act expediently without rushing into it and make sure you feel like you have the person who best suits the job."

There are some who think the Cubs will have competition with San Francisco, Texas and Washington, which are looking for managers as well. Florida didn't take long to scoop up Fredi Gonzalez after firing Girardi, and Gonzalez was on the Cubs' radar screen.

"Despite our status in the standings, this is still a very, very, very coveted job," Hendry said. "It is a great place to play. It has the best fans in the world and the best ballpark in the world. There are still a lot of positives here that any manager or any managerial candidate would certainly love to be the guy who had this job when we won.

"I never felt like we would be out of the mix with anyone who would be available."

In 2002, Hendry had Baker in mind as his manager even though Baker was still managing San Francisco in the playoffs. Hendry patiently waited until after the World Series to finally land Baker.

This year Hendry said there is no one name at the top of his list and wants to do an exhaustive search for the right man.

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