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Trembley's inexperience an anomaly

The Baltimore Sun

Orioles interim manager Dave Trembley might not be treading on new baseball ground, but he's not exactly headed on a well-worn path.

Trembley is the seventh man in modern baseball history to manage in the big leagues without any professional playing experience - minor leagues or otherwise. The highest level of competition that Trembley, a catcher, ascended to was a Canadian summer league in 1973-1974.

The good news: All but two of the seven managed more than one season. The bad news: None finished his managerial career with a record over .500.

Before Trembley, the most recent was Toronto's Carlos Tosca, who was named interim manager by the Blue Jays in 2002 and lasted until 2004, compiling a 191-191 record - tops among the group.

The other five, according to ESPN.com, were Hall of Fame executive Ed Barrow (1903-1904 Detroit Tigers, 1918-1920 Boston Red Sox); Hugo Bezdek (1917-1919 Pittsburgh Pirates); Judge Fuchs (1929 Boston Braves); Ted Turner (1977 Atlanta Braves); and John Boles (1996, 1999-2001 Florida Marlins).

Turner, the media mogul and owner of the Braves, lost his lone game and then was prohibited by Major League Baseball from managing a team he owned.

Trembley, 55, is also one of six current major league managers who never played in the big leagues. The others are the Tampa Bay Devil Rays' Joe Maddon, Detroit's Jim Leyland, Florida's Fredi Gonzalez, the Washington Nationals' Manny Acta and the Los Angeles Dodgers' Grady Little.

Eight of the remaining 24 managers are former big league All-Stars, led by the duo in New York: the Yankees' Joe Torre (nine-time All-Star) and the Mets' Willie Randolph (six times).

A fiery alternative

More than 40 percent of voters in a recent Sun poll said a "fiery personality" is the No. 1 trait they want in a new manager. And the former skipper who most embodies that phrase might be New York Yankees third base coach Larry Bowa, who managed the Philadelphia Phillies and San Diego Padres.

But it's not likely that Bowa, 61, will manage again.

"Right now, I would say I would have a whole lot of questions to ask, no matter where I'd go to get interviewed, no matter where it is," Bowa said.

Bowa said, "I really haven't thought about" the potentially open Orioles job. But he did throw this bone to Orioles fans: He thinks the Orioles manager has plenty to work with, especially on the pitching side.

"They have more pluses than minuses when they go on the field every night," Bowa said. "They have a lot of pluses. And most of the pluses are 60 feet 6 inches away. And if you don't have that, you can't win."

Historic moon shot

Philadelphia's Ryan Howard hit a homer to dead center against the Cincinnati Reds' Aaron Harang on Wednesday that traveled an estimated 505 feet, the longest in Citizens Bank Park history. But its real significance is that it was Howard's 100th homer in his 325th game. That's the fastest to the century mark in history, surpassing Pittsburgh's Ralph Kiner, who, in 1948, hit No. 100 in his 385th game.

Ouch, five years later

Wednesday marked the five-year anniversary of a tremendously lopsided trade. Then-Montreal Expos general manager Omar Minaya dealt prospects Grady Sizemore, Cliff Lee and Brandon Phillips to the Cleveland Indians for pitcher Bartolo Colon. Despite 10 wins by Colon in the last three months of the season, the Expos missed the playoffs. He was traded to the Chicago White Sox that offseason. Since then, Minaya has fled to New York, the Expos to Washington and Indians fans to church, giving prayers of thanks.

Quote of the week

"Fans are yelling, 'Hey, ever heard of Slimfast? Stop eating at McDonald's,' and I'm going, 'Hey, be a little more original. My last name is Bell, like Taco Bell, and my first name, Heath, is a candy bar. Come up with something good.'"

-San Diego Padres reliever Heath Bell on being heckled by fans about his weight.

Quick hit

The Texas Rangers might have to scramble if they want to trade first baseman Mark Teixeira (Mount St. Joseph) this year. He may not be back from the disabled list (strained quadriceps) until 10 days or so before the non-waiver trade deadline.

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