Ron Washington Filled In Tuesday’s Lineup Card While Watching Seinfeld
Whether you’re the manager of your weeknight softball team or just a superstitious video game player, most of us have been in the position of setting a lineup. And just about all of us, MLB managers included, have set a lineup with a weird variation and for weird, random reasons. Personally, I’ve become a fan of simply picking it out of a hat. Texas Rangers manager Ron Washington, on the other hand, set his batting order Tuesday night with a little help from Jerry Seinfeld.Washington said he set that night’s lineup while sitting around at home watching an episode of Seinfeld. He laughed, wrote down a new lineup to consider for next game, and apparently realized what he needed to do to provide a spark for the team. He woke up the next day, still liked it and went with it when it was time to turn in his card two nights ago.Managing a team that had started the month of May just 2-7, what could that hurt, right? Well, it didn’t hurt anything. The Rangers responded with a 7-2 victory over Oakland, matching their best offensive output this month. He went with a similar lineup Wednesday, but saw the game postponed due to weather.
Ron Washington joined ESPN Dallas with The Ben and Skin Show to discuss the success the team has had since he changed up the new lineup, how he filled out his new lineup while watching Seinfeld, how the players responded to the changes and whether he intends to stick with it.
On finding success Tuesday with a surprise change in the lineup:
“I felt great for the guys. They’ve really been grinding and they know they’re a better team than they’ve been showing. It’s nice that I came up with an idea to do something and it worked. But things only work when the players performed and they performed [Tuesday] night.”
How did an episode of Seinfeld prompt him to change the lineup?:
“I was channel surfing and I ran into Seinfeld and I just felt like I needed to laugh so I left him on. I was laying there prior to that just thinking what I could do to help these guys get things going. I just grabbed a paper and put a lineup together. I liked what I put on the paper, so when I came in that’s what I went with.”
Is it hard to switch guys’ routines up and did he expect some of them to respond to it?:
“I don’t think it’s major and it wasn’t a demotion, it was just moving some pieces around. … It was just being in a different spot. I thought maybe it would bring a different tone, and it did. These guys don’t complain about anything. The good thing I have over here is they trust me. I do things and if they have a question, they know they can come in and ask about it.”
What had he done with the lineup heading into Wednesday’s game, which eventually was postponed?:
“It’s the same except for the number two spots. I gave Elvis his day off. This way he’ll get two by only missing one game. I think he needed it; it’ll re-energize him. … That’s the only change today. I left it as it was [Tuesday] night.”