Saturday, May 16, 2009

Cooper: Hugo Chavez of Baseball?

If Jose de Jesus Ortiz isn't careful, Cooper's going to shovel-whack him. Pretty shocking blog today after a tough Astros loss to the Cubs. Let's look at an excerpt:

I'm going to let you in on a little secret.

Cooper's new nickname in the Astros' clubhouse is Hugo Chavez, whom you all may know is that Fidel Castro wannabe who runs Venezuela. I was informed of that fact yesterday at Wrigley Field, and that was before Cooper's second-guessing special.

I tried my hardest to find somebody to go on the record - other than Cooper - defending his late-inning decisions. I couldn't find anybody, although I didn't check with bench coach Ed Romero, who is on his job because he's Cooper's great friend.

I asked first base coach Jose Cruz for a comment, but Cruz politely said, "I just work here."

Let's be clear that players win and lose games, but they also have to believe in their manager. For the first time since I described the clubhouse as toxic last year in Baltimore, this visit to Wrigley is the first time when I've been approached with so many disgruntled players.