Guessing the preferred drinks of big league managers

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It’s tough to say for sure from just looking at a cellphone picture, but I’m going to guess that Jim Riggleman was downing Jack and Cokes while “solving the world’s problems” with “some beautiful young ladies” last night.

He seems like a Jack and Coke kind of guy, although probably Diet Coke because he has to keep The Gun Show open at age 58.

All of which got me thinking about the preferred drinks of other managers. For instance, I’d peg Twins manager Ron Gardenhire as a Budweiser guy.

(In the interest of full disclosure, I’m mostly a beer or vodka guy, with “whatever else there is” coming in a close third. And we know Calcaterra is hooked up to a bourbon drip 24-7.)

I asked for suggestions on Twitter and they’ve been rolling in by the dozens with the hashtag #ManagerDrinks, so here are some of my favorites so far …

Jack McKeon: Metamucil, Prune Juice

Joe Maddon: Wine (for the sophistication), Pabst Blue Ribbon (for the hipster-ness)

Charlie Manuel: Chocolate Milk

Ozzie Guillen: Tequila, Four Locko, Wine (because he’s a romantic)

Bob Melvin: Whatever Billy Beane is having

Kirk Gibson: Whiskey and Tabasco Sauce

Bud Black: White Russian

Jim Leyland: Old Fashioned

Terry Collins: Tom Collins

Tony La Russa: Something with an umbrella

Don Mattingly: Jeremiah Weed

Joe Girardi: Apple Juice

Terry Francona: Hot Toddy

Clint Hurdle: Arnold Palmer

Ned Yost: Box of Wine

I’m fairly certain we could entertainment ourselves with this for the afternoon and it’s Friday, so why not …

There is, indeed, an MLB-to-Portland group

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On Monday, Baseball America reported that MLB is prepared to expand to Portland and Montreal. We talked about that at length yesterday. One of the most common responses to that piece has been “Portland? Really?”

There’s good reason for that response. Baseball-to-Portland has been talked about for years, but there has never been any real traction. Past initiatives have failed, significant public funding for a stadium seems to be a political impossibility and, heck, Portland wasn’t even interested in keeping its Triple-A team, turning its stadium into a much more successful soccer venue and not missing the Beavers all that much.

It would seem, however, that the reports are not mere speculation and there is a genuine baseball-to-Portland initiative afoot once again. From the Oregonian:

On Tuesday, former Trail Blazers broadcaster Mike Barrett confirmed to The Oregonian/OregonLive that he is part of the Portland group.

“I am officially involved with a campaign to bring Major League Baseball and a stadium development to Portland,” Barrett said. “There is also a formally organized, sophisticated and seasoned management group running this initiative. We will keep you fully apprised of any/all developments as this project progresses.”

One guy — a broadcaster no less — saying he’s part of a group is not exactly a major needle-mover, of course. But it does contrast with past Portland initiatives that have been well-publicized grassroots affairs. While those may have been more broad-based and while their public nature may have provided some refreshing transparency, the simple fact of professional sports ownership in the 21st century is that well-monied groups who play things close to the vest are more likely to make waves. We’re in an age when technocratic hedge fund-type guys make things happen in this arena, not in an age when flamboyant public personalities do.

None of which is to say that baseball in Portland is a lock or that expansion anywhere is a short term proposition. It’s just to note that, yeah, there is a bit more going on, it seems, than just pointing at a map and saying “yeah, a team would make sense here.”