March 24th, 2008

When BP means bathroom problems

Img070It has to take a lot for Jim Leyland to see something completely new to him, but this did it.

Poor Brennan Boesch gets a chance to make the trip and play with the big club for a day, and when he runs into the dugout bathroom during BP, the lock trips on the door and won’t let go. And the adventure begins.

In most places, this probably wouldn’t have been a spectacle. In this case, however, the hinges were on the inside of the doorway, so the grounds crew couldn’t simply unhinge it. And the bathroom in the visitors dugout at Space Coast Stadium is literally at the end of the dugout, right in plain view from field level.

So as everyone from Leyland to head athletic trainer Kevin Rand to the clubhouse kids tried to figure out how to break out Boesch, more people notice. Pudge Rodriguez, Placido Polanco, Magglio Ordonez, all of them look over on their way into the dugout and stand around and watch. Even Nate Robertson, the starting pitcher for the day, walks out of the clubhouse to figure out what’s going on. Eventually, this attracted quite a crowd, especially once the crew had to resort to a crowbar to try to pry open the door.

Finally, the crowbar apparently worked, a good half-hour after Boesch realized he was locked in. He came running out with a sense of relief and hugged the grounds crew guy who broke him out of there.

"That’s why I love the game," Leyland said. "I’ve never seen that in my career. If it was me in there, that door would’ve been down. I would’ve figured out somehow to get out of there. I would’ve panicked. I’ve never seen that in my life."

Inge "probably" in CF for opener

Leyland left open the possibility something could change, but he plans on starting Brandon Inge in center field next Monday in place of injured Curtis Granderson. To further complicate things, Detroit’s starting center field will also be its backup catcher.

Leyland said he had a long conversation with Inge on Sunday and that everything went well.

"I think he’s happier leaving camp than he was coming in," Leyland said.

As for the lineup, Leyland said he’ll probably lead off Edgar Renteria against right-handers, even though Leyland would rather not move him out of an RBI slot. Jacque Jones, Pudge and Inge will bat in some combination from seventh through ninth. Leyland said Pudge is a "strong possibility" to lead off against left-handers.

Here’s what you have for lineups today:

  1. Renteria, SS
  2. Polanco, 2B
  3. Sheffield, DH
  4. Ordonez, RF
  5. Cabrera, 3B
  6. Guillen, 1B
  7. Rodriguez, C
  8. Thames, LF
  9. Inge, CF

And for Washington:

  1. Cristian Guzman, SS
  2. Lastings Milledge, CF
  3. Ryan Zimmerman, 3B
  4. Dmitri Young, 1B
  5. Austin Kearns, RF
  6. Paul Lo Duca, C
  7. Elijah Dukes, DH
  8. Felipe Lopez, 2B
  9. Willie Harris, LF

On a lighter note, minor league player Brennan Boesch is available to play the outfield off the bench for the Tigers. That wasn’t really guaranteed an hour and a half ago, when he was stuck in the bathroom in the visitors dugout here at Space Coast Stadium. Apparently the lock stuck, and because the hinges are on the inside, they couldn’t simply unhinge it. Well, he was stuck in there for about a half hour before stadium workers took a crowbar and finally were able to pry the door open, much to Boesch’s relief.