I've been reading a lot of news articles which speak to the hands on nature with which Joe Girardi is handling spring training. I was definitely a Joe Torre supporter, but the differences can be seen. Last season, so many players showed up out of shape, and they suffered for it. It was odd that players would show up out of shape when one, they're paid athletes, and two, they didn't win a world series. Joe Torre was always known for how well he handled the various egos he had on his team, but Girardi is not too bad himself. To demonstrate this point, I will speak of an incident reported exclusively by the "Respect Jeter's Gangster" blog reporters. Here's what happened:
After practice earlier today, Mike Mussina and Carl Pavano were changing into their streets across the locker room from one another. Carl Pavano looked over at Mussina with rage boiling in his chest. He watched Mussina put on his shoes, and tie them, the rage over-flowing. Finally Pavano couldn't take it any more and said the following: "Hey Moose, I saw your face on a milk carton the other day. It said 'Help! Missing fastball.'" "OOOOHHHHH SNAP!" the clubhouse erupted. Moose shook his head, feeling the blow of Pavano's words land squarely on his pride. "Oh yeah." Moose responded. "I saw your mom yesterday. She was wearing a pair of them air Carrot Tops." referring to Pavano's mothers status as the Carrot Top fan club vice president. The room erupted once more with a loud round of "Oh Snaps!". Pavano said "That's it." as he put on his Pavano Tough t-shirt "Let's get this over with." Mussina waisted no time throwing on his Joba Rules t-shirt and yelled "Bring it on!" The two squared up. Shelley Duncan who was looking on got so excited he jump kicked the ceiling fan. Right then, Joe Girardi ran into the club house wearing, I kid you not, a Respect Jeter's Gangster t-shirt. The clubhouse made a path for Girardi and when the pitchers saw him in such an awesome shirt, they stepped back. Girardi said "No fighting you two! Or you'll be running three times as much tomorrow!" Strong words they were, but necessary. Fearing that the increased work load would lead to another tommy john, Pavano backed off. Mussina did too and they exited through different doors.
This was a huge change from Joe Torre, who used to place bets on his players when they fought. He made tons of money when he put his bet on a skinny kid from Kalamazoo, Michigan against Deron Peter, a suspected 'roider twice his size.
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