The Seattle Mariners have a new manager, Lloyd McClendon who’s likely most famous for his base throwing tantrum as skipper of the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Temper or not, McClendon is one of the funniest and most personable guys in Major League Baseball, an attribute which he put on display during the General Manager Meetings in Florida last week.
McClendon, after being hired by the Mariners, was summoned to Seattle on a late night flight. The team had sent a driver to pick up their new manager, though McClendon felt bad and apologized to the elderly man for having to be out so late in the evening.
The man said he didn’t mind – suggesting that he was more of a night owl anyway.
McClendon and his driver continued their conversation as they drove through the dark downtown streets of Seattle, which seemed to unsettle the new skipper:
“He had to be about 70-75. He said he had no family here. He said his family had all gone back to their (original) country. I asked him where he was from. He said, ‘Romania.’ I said, ‘Romania?’ He said, ‘You know, Dracula.’
“And it was dark in this car. It was raining. It was dark. He was taking me downtown the back way. I couldn’t see anything.
“I said, ‘Can you turn the light on back here?’”