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Sunday, April 17, 2011

Yahoo: A little help here? Rays beat Twins with lineup picked by fans

How much is a win worth?  5 million dollars?  That is a lot of free meatloaf!

The small-market Tampa Bay Rays have become renowned within baseball circles for seeking advantages in unlikely places and exploiting them to their benefit.

They’re really not kidding with that approach, either. On Friday afternoon, manager Joe Maddon allowed those who attended Tampa Bay Chamber of Commerce luncheon to pick the Rays’ lineup for the game against the Minnesota Twins later that night.

McCoy Posted: April 17, 2011 at 04:25 PM | 11 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: rays

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   1. The District Attorney Posted: April 17, 2011 at 04:56 PM (#3800289)
Fans' lineup, vs. RHP Blackburn:

Fuld lf, Damon dh, Joyce rf, F. Lopez 3b, B. Upton cf, S. Rodriguez 2b, D. Johnson 1b, Shoppach c, Brignac ss

Pretty good, really. I would have played Zobrist at 2B (and probably hit him cleanup!), and Jaso at C. I don't really believe in Fuld, but since he is the only guy on the team hitting, I guess you play him. It's a tough team to make a lineup for.
   2. Dan Posted: April 17, 2011 at 05:00 PM (#3800296)
It was given to be a day off for both Jaso and Zobrist.
   3. McCoy Posted: April 17, 2011 at 05:23 PM (#3800335)
Well, in the article the author makes the claim that the luncheon crowd benched them.
   4. joeysdadjoe Posted: April 17, 2011 at 06:14 PM (#3800403)
Really bad when Lopez hits 4th. Worse that he deserved to.
   5. Fred Lynn Nolan Ryan Sweeney Agonistes Posted: April 17, 2011 at 07:59 PM (#3800530)
I love this kind of stuff, and wish teams would do it more often: fans pick the lineup, contest to be Manager for a Day, etc.
   6. Greg K Posted: April 17, 2011 at 08:16 PM (#3800552)
I only wish the Jays did a "General Manager For A Day" promotion. Here's 30 million dollars, who do you give it to?
I'd probably single out phenom SS Greg Koabel.
   7. bobm Posted: April 17, 2011 at 08:26 PM (#3800568)
This reminded me of Bill Veeck's "Grandstand Manager's Day" from 60 years ago.

Veeck held a contest in the St. Louis Globe-Democrat that would allow fans to vote on the Browns’ starting line-up. Everyone who mailed in their ballot would in return be given a ticket to the Browns-Athletics game; where they would be seated in a special section behind the Browns dugout. Veeck’s plan was for everyone seated in that particular spot in the bleachers, called the Grandstand Managers Section, to vote on what plays the Browns should do next. ...

Ned Garver, the Browns starting pitcher, continued to get himself into trouble and the first fan decision of the night was coming up. Instead of [Manager Zach] Taylor making the call from the dugout, the new procedure went like this: A public relations employee would hold up a sign above the Browns dugout asking the crowd what they would like the Browns to do. Then, the crowd would quickly hold up a green sign for ‘yes’ or a red sign for ‘no.’ St. Louis District Circuit Judge James E. McLaughlin would quickly tabulate the votes, find the majority and relay the decision to Taylor, who in turn would instruct the players what to do.

With one out in the first and men on the corners, the question posed to the crowd was whether the Browns should bring the infield in or keep them in double-play position. The crowd voted to keep the infield back and then watched to see their call work to perfection as Pete Suder hit into an inning-ending double play as manager Taylor watched comfortably in a rocking chair at field-level, smoking his pipe and drinking a cool beverage.

   8. DiPoto Cabengo Posted: April 18, 2011 at 03:47 PM (#3801020)
I think Tom Kelly let Kent Hrbek manage a game (or make a few calls).
   9. KingKaufman Posted: April 19, 2011 at 08:20 AM (#3801697)
Grandstand Managers Day is my favorite Bill Veeck story, better than Eddie Gaedel.

Vin Scully tells a story where Walt Alston let him manage, from the booth, for an inning on the last day of the season, the pennant having been clinched the night before. Scully's voice could famously be heard throughout Dodger Stadium on the transistor radios. Ron Fairly, who had celebrated a bit too much and hadn't expected to play, was forced into action and drew a walk. "He didn't walk to first base, he sloshed." Scully had Alston give Fairly the steal sign and told the fans to watch for Fairly's double-take. Fairly went on several pitches in a row that were fouled off. The guy was just dying. Finally he goes, they throw down, and the infielder drops the ball. Safe. Scully says, "OK, Walter, I got you this far, you're on your own now."

It's a great story, except I can't find a game that matches the circumstances.
   10. KingKaufman Posted: April 19, 2011 at 08:25 AM (#3801698)
Closest thing I know of: Fairly did walk and was the back half of a double steal in the first inning of the last game of the 1964 season. The Dodgers finished way out of it that year so that doesn't match up with the celebration part of the story, and it isn't a double steal in Scully's telling.
   11. TVerik - Dr. Velocity Posted: April 19, 2011 at 11:48 AM (#3801708)
Joe Torre used to let a player manage in a meaningless game in late September. I remember Paul O'Neill and Bernie Williams managing games.

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