Sweet Lou is calling it a game.
Cubs manager Lou Piniella will retire after the 2010 season, according to ESPN.com.
The 66-year-old skipper will retire as the 14th winningest manager in major league history after 23 seasons of calling the shots.
"Why make this announcement now? [GM] Jim Hendry asked me in recent weeks regarding my future with the team and I told him I had made the decision to retire at the end of the season," Piniella told ESPN.com. "Since my decision has now been made, I don't want to mislead anyone about my intentions when asked in the future."
In his three previous seasons with the Cubs, Piniella led them to three consecutive winning seasons. He led them to the playoffs twice, with both postseason appearances ending in sweeps in the division series. The Cubs secured the best record in the National League in 2008, but this season, the Cubs currently sit at 10 games under .500 — good enough for fourth place in the NL Central.
Piniella also stated that he will not let the announcement of his retirement get in the way of winning more games.
"I want to keep the momentum going more than anything else and win as many games as we can to get back in this pennant race," he said. "I'm going to give every effort I have to help this team win and that will remain my sole focus through the rest of the season."
His early announcement gives Hendry ample time to find his replacement, which may include former Cub great and current Triple-A Iowa Cubs manager Ryne Sandberg.
Heading into Tuesday’s action, Piniella has 1,826 wins in his 23rd season as manager.
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