Piniella nears 1,800 wins

Lou Piniella is on the cusp of winning 1,800 games as a manager.

“1,800 wins! That’s a lot of wins,” said Piniella, who had 1,799 going into Saturday’s action. “I’ve been fortunate. I’ve had good health and I’ve always been employed. I’ve had good players and good coaching staffs. I’m appreciative to everybody that has contributed to my success and the organizations that have hired me.”

Piniella was asked if it’s still as much fun to manage as it was when he first started.

“It’s a ball.” Piniella said sarcastically. “It’s a ball, I’m telling you.”

The Cubs manager talked about the subtle changes in the aspects of managing that have occurred over a 25-year period.

“It’s changed in a lot of ways, believe me,” Piniella said. And basically, as a manager you have to adapt to the changes.”

Piniella said old-school managers can have trouble adapting to a modern style and modern players.

“Earl Weaver was a Hall Of Fame manager,” Piniella said. “When he came back the last time, he didn’t stay too long. Again, you have to adapt to the changes.”

-- After a 35-pitch eighth inning performance on Friday, Carlos Zambrano will get Saturday off.

“He says he is [available],” Piniella said. “We’re going to stay away from him today.”

-- Xavier Nady was a late addition to the lineup after Cubs trainers told Piniella that Nady’s elbow was responding well after having played on Friday. Originally Piniella had Tyler Colvin in the lineup at right field.

-- Cubs closer Carlos Marmol has had only six save opportunities in the 36 games the Cubs have played in 2010.

“That’s a very, very small number,” Piniella said. “But we’re under .500, first of all. A lot of games we’ve won [10] weren’t save situations.”