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October 3, 2011

Pebble Hunting

Three Major-League Teams Interview Three Baseball Men for Job Openings

by Sam Miller

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The first:

Angels Stadium
11:15 a.m.
On a Tuesday. 

Angels owner Arte Moreno: ... and so that's why we'll never put a live monkey in Alberto Callaspo's locker again.
General Manager Candidate: I see.
Special Advisor Bill Stoneman: Well, let's get down to business. Mr. [Redacted], it's a privilege to have you here. As you know, we are looking for a new General Manager. Tony Reagins, well, let's just say he resigned. Resigned off a cliff, nahmean? He was doing a poor job. Just awful. Awful, awful, awful. So we need somebody who will give us a new direction, and we hope you're that person.
Candidate: Well, I certainly expect that I would be. To be honest, I don't think there's any GM I'd be more dissimilar to than Tony Reagins.
Bill Stoneman: How so?
Candidate: Well, obviously I would never have traded for Vernon Wells. I mean, the contract alone is like somebody's desperate attempt to spend all of his deceased great-uncle's fortune, but even getting away from the dollars, you have to consider the performance of a ...
Mike Scioscia: .
Candidate:
Candidate: Did I say something wrong?
Mike Scioscia: .
Arte Moreno: I think Mike and I both actually liked that move for Wells.
Arte Moreno: Huge splash. Money is just a social construct.
Candidate: OK, but including Mike Napoli when Toronto probably would have given you Wells for a couple Angels wrestling masks...

Mike Scioscia: .
Candidate: What now?
Arte Moreno: Mike Napoli is bad. Bad bad man. Too streaky.
Candidate: But Mathis!
Mike Scioscia: .
Arte Moreno: Jeff Mathis creates 27 outs with his glove. He only makes three outs with his bat. Stupid.
Candidate: Fine, fine, but Fernando Rodney...
Mike Scioscia:  .
GM candidate: Gary Matthews, Jr.
Bill Stoneman: Hey, that wasn't even Tony.
Bill Stoneman: I made that move.
Bill Stoneman: Me, Bill Stoneman, Senior Advisor. 
GM candidate: So basically, you guys just got rid of Tony but everything else stays the same?
Arte Moreno: Actually, Tony will stay on as a special assistant. Helluva guy. Helluva GM.

Mike Scioscia: .
Bill Stoneman: Mike would like you to leave.

The second:

Wrigley Field
2 p.m.
On a Thursday. 

Cubs Chairman Tom Ricketts: ... and that's how I diced up Alfonso Soriano's contract, bundled it with other toxic assets, and sold it to public employee pension funds.
General Manager Candidate: I see.
Interim GM Randy Bush: Well, let's get down to business. Mr. [Redacted], it's a privilege to have you here. As you know, we're looking for a new General Manager. And the first question I have for you is, are you [mumbles softly].
Candidate: Sir?
Tom Ricketts: He asked you if you are [sharpens pencil loudly, drowning out his question].
Candidate: I'm sorry, I didn't understand you.
Randy Bush: Well that's terrible. We simply must have a General Manager who understands ownership.
Candidate: No, I mean I couldn't hear.
Tom Ricketts: And we must have someone who can listen! This is going to come out of your paycheck.
Candidate: What is? That question? And I'm not even hired yet.
Randy Bush: And you won't be!
Tom Ricketts: Not while I'm alive.
Tom Ricketts: /dies
Randy Bush: Oh no he's dead!
Tom Ricketts: /jumps up
Tom Ricketts: And not even an attempt to resuscitate me. You'll never have my job, you dim-witted stranger, and you'll never marry my daughter, either!
Randy Bush: She's quite manly, you know.
Tom Ricketts: That's not my daughter. I keep telling you, that's Koyie Hill.
Candidates: Did you say Koyie Hill? I have some thoughts about Koyie Hill!
Randy Bush: Who are you?
Tom Ricketts: Who let him in?
Candidate: I'm applying for the job of general manager.
Randy Bush: Well, then, let's begin!



Randy Bush: No, seriously though, we're hiring Theo Epstein. GTFO.

The third:

Fenway Park
10 a.m.
On a Friday

Red Sox owner John Henry: ... and so that's how Dustin Pedroia pees into the big-boy urinals.
Managerial Candidate: I see.
Team President Larry Lucchino: Well, let's get down to business. Mr. [Redacted], it's a privilege to have you here. As you know, we are looking for a new manager. Terry Francona's option won't be picked up, unless you mean picked up, crumpled into a ball, used as toilet paper by Dennys Reyes ,and sent in a box to Francona's elderly father. But that’s not what people usually mean by picked up, so I’ll assume you don’t mean that. Anyway, your experience is, to say the least, impressive.
Candidate: Thank you!
General Manager Theo Epstein: Every sacrifice bunt you have ever called for has increased your team's win expectancy.
Candidate: Yes.
Larry Lucchino: You use your closer in tie games, even on the road?
Candidate: Yes.
Larry Lucchino: You ignore head-to-head stats because the sample size is too small to be useful?
Candidate: Obviously.
Theo Epstein: No pitcher you have ever managed has had an arm injury?
Candidate: Correct.
Larry Lucchino: Your teams always start hot and finish strong and play well during the dog days of summer and also take a lot of momentum into the All-Star break?
Candidate: That's right.
Theo Epstein: Players have actually run through brick walls for you, including players not on your team?
Candidate: Correct.
Larry Lucchino: You ghostwrote Wooden On Leadership.
Candidate: Yes.
Larry Lucchino: You once let a 9-year-old girl play shortstop for her Make-A-Wish, and she finished a triple short of the cycle? 
Candidate: Right.
Larry Lucchino: Well, that's all very impressive. Is there anything else?
Candidate: Oh yes.
Candidate: /opens briefcase
A GOLDEN GLOW FILLS THE ROOM
Theo Epstein: My God.
Larry Lucchino: Is that what I think it is?
Candidate: Mmm hmmmm.
Larry Lucchino: It's beautiful.
John Henry: We happy?
Theo Epstein: Yeah, we happy.
Candidate: So am I...
Larry Lucchino: You're fired.
Candidate: Wait, how can I be—
Theo Epstein: You're hired.
Candidate: Oh, thank God, I thought you said—
Theo Epstein: Now you're fired.
John Henry: Our fans need blood. The sacrifice of Terry Francona will keep them peaceful for a couple more days, but what are we supposed to do if the Yankees win the World Series? You should hear what they already say about us on sports-talkradio. Donnie from Dorchester just won't let up. He called me wicked queeah.
Larry Lucchino: You're not, John. You're not.
John Henry: Anyway, you’ll be the next scapegoat. Congratulations, only about 1 in 200 people ever get to be scapegoated by irrational Boston fans.
Theo Epstein: Keep in touch, though. Maybe I'll hire you in Chicago.

Sam Miller also writes for the Orange County Register.

Sam Miller is an author of Baseball Prospectus. 
Click here to see Sam's other articles. You can contact Sam by clicking here

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