July 15th, 2008
Not only Carlos Guillen not left on the bench, he wasn’t even the last batter on the AL bench. He worked Brian Wilson for nine pitches — not a bad battle for coming in cold off the bench — before finally chasing the 97 mph heater up and away for the strikeout. Evan Longoria pinch-hit after him against Billy Wagner and provided the game-tying double.
While some of us were talking with Carlos Guillen in the Yankee clubhouse this afternoon before batting practice, Jim Leyland emerged from the clubhouse lounge with a smile on his face. He had just chatted for a half-hour with Hall of Famer Yogi Berra, the catcher Leyland idolized when he was growing up.
Among the stories, Leyland said, was Berra talking about calling a game for the pitchers during his playing career and how they never called for a cutter. They called it a fastball, and it went one way or the other.
“He was good,” Leyland said of the storytelling. “We had a good time.”
Ironically, AL manager Terry Francona apparently told reporters that one of his highlights of the last few days was hanging out with Leyland.
If you’re watching the game tonight on TV or wherever, watch for Leyland coaching third base during the bottom of the third inning. Apparently AL manager Terry Francona wants the coaches, both the ones off of his Boston staff and the other AL managers he brought on, to each get a chance to coach one of the bases, so they’ll rotate.
As for Guillen, he supposedly will be the odd man out, the utility guy held back in reserve in case Francona needs to insert somebody late. In this case, his versatility works against him.
Sorry the posts haven’t been regular the last few days. Things have been hectic here in NY, and as long as I was here, I wanted to fit in a run in Central Park. That was yesterday. Today, it’s all work, including a media session this morning with many of the Hall of Famers in attendance for the ceremonies here, which was pretty cool.
To update you on Eddie Bonine, he left his start for Double-A Erie Monday after taking a drive off of his shin. Supposedly he could’ve pitched on, but they took him out as a precaution. He’s heading back to Toledo, where he’s renting, and awaiting his marching orders. Unless something changes all of a sudden, he’s expected to start for the Tigers next Monday at Kansas City.