CHICAGO -- Cubs general manager Jim Hendry, who met this past week with managerial candidate Ryne Sandberg, said there is no front-runner for the Cubs' job and he is still in the early stages of the interview process.

Sandberg, who is managing the Cubs' Triple-A Iowa team, was named the Pacific Coast League Manager of the Year on Friday after leading the team to an 80-60 record. The Iowa Cubs begin a four-game series Friday against Memphis and need to win three of four to advance to the playoffs.

Hendry did talk with Sandberg about the Cubs' job but would not call it a formal interview.

"He needs to finish the season," Hendry said Friday. "We're not in any rush to complete interview processes or things like that. It was more normal dialogue and get-together after the game. It was no different than if I was going into Iowa in the middle of May."

There were reports that former Marlins manager Fredi Gonzalez was a front-runner for the Cubs job.

"I told everybody I would not [comment], and I'm not going to get into comments about everybody," Hendry said of rumors. "The process will take the same time frame I said it would. You'll read different speculation every day about who the front-runner is and who's eliminated and who's not. Trust me, it's all basically conjecture because I haven't talked to anybody about any of it.

"There is no leading candidate, there hasn't been and there won't be until I take the final evaluations to [owner] Tom Ricketts and his family," Hendry said. "There's no sense talking about it, really."

Hendry has watched the team under interim manager Mike Quade, who entered Friday 6-3 since taking over Aug. 23 for Lou Piniella. Quade also is a candidate for the permanent job.

"I think Mike's done a real nice job of getting everybody involved and giving people chances and putting people in spots that we'd like them to be in so we can see who we've got at the end of the year," Hendry said. "It's not an easy job when you take over with five or six weeks left, and I think he's off to a real good start and handled himself at the highest level on and off the field."

This will be the third manager Hendry has hired for the Cubs following Dusty Baker and Piniella. The Cubs have won the National League Central in three of the past eight years.

Hendry isn't receiving resumes on a daily basis but has gotten phone calls from people interested in the post.

"I've been keeping files on potential managers since I was the assistant [general manager] here," Hendry said. "You use connections to find out about people, you talk to people who have played for managers before. It's an ongoing process."

With Gorzelanny out, Cubs adjust rotation

CHICAGO -- Cubs pitcher Tom Gorzelanny has seen a replay of Jose Tabata's line drive coming at him on Wednesday. He doesn't want to watch it again.

"It was definitely going to my face," Gorzelanny said Friday. "I turned my head a little bit when I saw it and put my hand up. If I didn't have my pinkie in the way, it would've hit my cheek, which would've been pretty bad. It wouldn't have been a good feeling."

Gorzelanny (7-8, 3.90 ERA) will miss at least one start and possibly two because of a small incomplete hairline fracture underneath the fingernail of his left pinkie, suffered when he was hit by the ball. The lefty was wearing a small mini brace on the finger Friday and said the swelling has gone done considerably since the incident happened in the third inning of the Cubs' 5-3 win over the Pirates on Wednesday.

His former Pittsburgh teammate Paul Maholm was hit in the face by a line drive in Class A ball, and Gorzelanny said "it's not pretty."

"It's scary and there's nothing you can do to defend yourself," Gorzelanny said.

Gorzelanny did try to convince athletic trainer Mark O'Neal that he could stay in the game after being hit.

"It hit me in the hand, in the pinkie, so it was sort of sore," Gorzelanny said. "When you get hit, you get a bruise. For the first minute or two, it hurt, but I said, 'Let me see if it goes away.' They didn't want to take any chances. I would've liked to have [stayed in] but it probably wouldn't have been a good idea."

Instead, he will do his regular between-outings work minus throwing for now.

The Cubs have tweaked their rotation and will have Carlos Zambrano (6-6, 4.36 ERA) start Saturday and Ryan Dempster (12-9, 3.71 ERA) on Sunday in the series against the New York Mets. Carlos Silva (10-5, 3.92 ERA), who made his second rehab start Wednesday for Class A Peoria, could start Monday, with rookie Casey Coleman (1-1, 5.76 ERA) going Tuesday. Coleman was available in the bullpen Friday.

"We've got some options," Cubs interim manager Mike Quade said.

Silva has not pitched for the Cubs since Aug. 1,, when he was pulled after four batters because of an abnormal heart rate. He underwent a procedure to correct that on Aug. 9. In his last rehab outing, he threw 78 pitches.

Quade said he recalled managing in Macon, Ga., in the mid '80s and a pitcher rehabbing with his team rejoined the big league club and threw a one-hit shutout.

"Knock on wood, I'd love to tell that story again in a few days," Quade said.

Soto, Byrd return to Cubs' lineup

CHICAGO -- Geovany Soto, sidelined because of some fluid and swelling in his right knee, was back in the Cubs' lineup Friday.

Interim manager Mike Quade said he was hoping Soto would return in time to face Mets knuckleballer R.A. Dickey. When Quade was managing at Triple-A Iowa and Soto was on his team and scheduled to appear in the All-Star Futures Game, Quade suggested the catcher hit third because he can handle the quirky pitch.

Marlon Byrd also was back in center field after getting Wednesday off. Byrd, who entered play seventh in the National League with a .302 average, has had some soreness in his right leg.

"I walk in, look at him, you get a nod and he's good to go," Quade said of the center fielder. "Whatever soreness he has, it disappears in a hurry."

Worth noting

The Cubs will unveil a statue of Hall of Famer Billy Williams on Tuesday at the corner of Sheffield and Addison streets outside Wrigley Field. Several of Williams' teammates are scheduled to attend, including Ernie Banks, Fergie Jenkins, Ron Santo and Glenn Beckert. During his 18-year Major League career, including 16 seasons with the Cubs, Williams batted .290 with 2,711 hits, 426 home runs and 1,475 RBIs. He won the National League Rookie of the Year Award in 1961 and was a six-time All-Star. ... The Cubs will host an equipment collection drive on Saturday before their game against the Mets. Fans are invited to donate new and used equipment at specially marked tables on Clark Street between Addison and Waveland Streets, beginning at 10 a.m. CT. Donations will benefit Streator Youth Baseball. A tornado severely damaged the Southside Diamonds, the baseball fields of the Streator Youth Baseball, earlier this summer. ... The Cubs Wives will host their eighth annual Food Drive at Wrigley Field prior to Saturday's game. The event is presented by Meijer and proceeds benefit the Lakeview Pantry. Since its inception in 2003, the event has helped secure more than 83,000 pounds of food. ... The Cubs wives also will sell copies of the Cubs Cookbook on Monday at the Jewel store at 2940 W. Ashland Ave. in Chicago, starting at 12:30 p.m. CT. Proceeds benefit the Ryan Dempster Foundation. ... It's been a banner year for Cubs Minor League managers. Triple-A Iowa manager Ryne Sandberg was named the Pacific Coast League Manager of the Year and Double-A Tennessee's Bill Dancy received the same honor in the Southern League. ... Cubs pitcher Sean Marshall has 81 strikeouts, topping his previous high of 77, set his rookie season in 2006.