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TOTALLY RANDOM

Different boss, same charming attitude

Hal Steinbrenner runs the New York Yankees with the same tact his father George did before.

July 22, 2009|Mike Penner

Demonstrating that the big apple does not fall far from the tree, Hal Steinbrenner has borrowed a page from father George to motivate -- that's one word for it -- his baseball manager.

"Joe [Girardi] knows what's expected of him. It's never changed," Steinbrenner told the New York Daily News. "We expect to win every year. Joe knows who he's working for. Joe knows the organization as good as anyone. He knows what's expected of him and he expects that of himself."

Girardi's New York Yankees began Tuesday tied with the Boston Red Sox for the best record in the American League. But that did not squeeze a vote of confidence for Girardi from Steinbrenner.

"Joe's contract is not over with," Steinbrenner said. "I'm not going to discuss any of that. That's a long ways off. Right now, all I know is the team's in good spirits, they're motivated and we're playing well. We hope it continues."

Girardi said he's not surprised.

"I know the expectations," he said. "I knew it when I took the job in Year 1 and I knew it coming into this year. For however long I manage here, the expectations are going to be here, on the next guy, too. It's never going to change."

When the next guy arrives depends on how many October games Girardi's Yankees might play.

Trivia time

Before being converted to a pitcher by his high school coach, which position did Don Drysdale play?

Up his alley

President Obama was asked by MLB.com's Bob Costas if his bowling average had improved from the 37 he rolled during a campaign stop in 2008.

"It has," Obama said. "As a matter of fact, I bowled a 161 recently."

Costas: "That's good."

Obama: "That's not bad. Camp David's got a bowling alley, and the White House has a bowling alley. I don't want people thinking I'm taking off from thinking about nuclear weapons to just go bowl, but every once in a while."

Now they tell him

Atlanta Braves Manager Bobby Cox and Hall of Fame pitcher Don Sutton were effusive in their praise of Greg Maddux's talents at an Atlanta luncheon before the team retired Maddux's No. 31 jersey.

"If I had known I was that good," Maddux told the Associated Press, "I'd probably still be playing."

Trivia answer

Second base.

(Question and answer provided by reader Eddie Tolmas of Porter Ranch.)

And finally

Tom Watson, to the AP, when asked whether he was the George Foreman of golf: "No, I don't name all my kids 'George.' My kids have different names."

--

mike.penner@latimes.com

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