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Datz has plenty of helpers

By Sheldon Published: August 8, 2009

CHICAGO: Manager Eric Wedge was not scheduled to arrive for Saturday's game against the White Sox until shortly before first pitch, but he did not leave acting manager Jeff Datz, the Indians' bench coach, alone on an island to fend for himself. [ep
   ""I talked to Eric before he left town on Thursday,'' Datz said. ""We developed a tentative lineup for yesterday and today. If something drastic happened, I could change it.'' [ep
   Datz also talked to Wedge by phone around 1 p.m. Friday and again Saturday afternoon. [ep
   Wedge missed Friday's game to be with his wife, Kate, whose mother died earlier in the week. The funeral was Saturday morning in Buffalo, after which Wedge caught a plane for Chicago. [ep
    Datz said not having a formal bench coach for him to consult with was not a problem Friday night. [ep
   ""We all get together and talk,'' he said, referring to the other coaches, adding with a smile, ""I could ask myself a question, but I think I'd be in trouble in I answered back.'' [ep
   TWO IN A ROW -- Kelly Shoppach had not been behind the plate for two games in a row since July 26 and 27, but he started at catcher Friday and Saturday nights. [ep
   ""This is what Eric and I talked about before we came here,'' Datz said. ""Kelly was scheduled to catch the first two nights. Of course, it didn't hurt that he had a nice game last night.'' [ep
   Shoppach hit two home runs, singled and drove in four runs in the Tribe's 6-2 win against Chicago ace Mark Buehrle. [ep
   Today's catcher? ""Possibly, it will be Wyatt Toregas,'' Datz said. [ep
   WHOOPS -- Whether it was a rookie mistake or just a mistake doesn't really matter. Dropping a routine fly ball in the ninth inning is not recommended procedure. [ep
   That's what happened to Trevor Crowe with one out and nobody on Friday night. [ep
   ""I don't like to see that happen,'' Datz said. ""It should not happen at the professional level. We discussed it last night and today. [ep
   ""Fundamentally, Trevor was sound. He even had both hands up, he just clanked it. You have to make sure you look the ball into your glove before you think about throwing. I was telling him that before the game, because this is a ballpark where you can get a little swirling wind.'' [ep
   GOOD TIMING -- The Twins acquired Carl Pavano from the Tribe just in time for him to start against the Tigers Saturday night. [ep
   Pavano is 3-0 with a 1.93 ERA against Detroit, so it was only natural that Twin Cities reporters would ask GM Bill Smith if that was a key reason for the trade. [ep
   ""This deal was not done with one team in mind,'' he said. [ep
   If Pavano continues to pile up innings and starts, he can add another $2 million to his $1.5 million base salary. The Twins and Indians will share the cost, with Minnesota paying about one third. He earned an additional $200,000 before the trade. [ep
   FARM FACTS -- Wes Hodges homered and singled, driving in two runs, but Columbus lost to Buffalo 4-3. *elip Tim Fedroff had two hits and two RBI, and Ole Sheldon homered and had two RBI, as Kinston beat Salem 9-1. *elip John Allman had three hits and two RBI, and Nate Recknagel had two hits and one RBI in Lake County's 8-4 win over Lakewood. [ep


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