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A great interview with former Dodgers GM Fred Claire

Dec 14, 2012, 2:00 PM EDT

Image (1) dodgers%20logo.jpg for post 3955

Jeff Pearlman has a great, in-depth interview with former Dodgers general manager Fred Claire. He talks about coming up with the Dodgers, the firing of Al Campanis which led to Claire taking over, talks about whether Tommy Lasorda is, in fact, a big phony, and muses about how the Dodgers got it so wrong on Darryl Strawberry.

But the best part of it is when he talks about the trade of Mike Piazza. The trade that he had nothing to do with because it was ordered from on-high by Fox executives who had recently taken ownership of the team:

It changed the history because it was the first time the Dodgers had made a trade without the general manager—the man in charge of baseball operations—being involved in a trade. It was a trade made by a Fox television executive for television reasons. Let that one soak in. The Dodgers make a major trade for reasons other than baseball reasons.

He goes on beyond that, but really, the whole interview is fantastic. Check it out.

  1. willclarkgameface - Dec 14, 2012 at 2:12 PM

    Fucking FOX. Mike Piazza should have been a lifetime Dodger, well, right up until his knees were ready to fall out and THEN he should have gone to the Mets because no one cares about the Mets really.

  2. jdillydawg - Dec 14, 2012 at 2:39 PM

    Well, Fox tries to be “fair and balanced” in all they do. Why would they involve the guy who does this for a living when they can just go to their panel of resident “experts?”

    Classic case of “we can do your job better than you” and then totally screwing things up.

    • noodles73 - Dec 14, 2012 at 2:48 PM

      The resident “experts” for FOX at the time of th Piazza trade must have been Al Bundy,Homer Simpson,and Aresinio Hall.

  3. cur68 - Dec 14, 2012 at 2:58 PM

    He’s right. The #1 best thing on that list was 18 holes of Golf on a sunny day. Also, he said that Eminem and Bill O’Rielly were accomplished rappers: quite possibly the funniest thing anyone has ever said about Bill O’Rielly, EVER. Now I must go. I have typed “Bill O’Rielly” on this keyboard several times now and must wash it with a caustic, shrive it with prayer and slam my typing fingers in a desk drawer as punishment.

    • manchestermiracle - Dec 14, 2012 at 10:16 PM

      No worries, you avoided the curse by spelling his name wrong.

      • cur68 - Dec 14, 2012 at 10:25 PM

        Saved by my sub-conscious

  4. seitz26 - Dec 14, 2012 at 3:23 PM

    Fred Claire is one of the nicest people I’ve ever met. He was a regular at the nine hole golf course where I used to work back in the mid-90s, and he and his wife were always very pleasant customers and loose with the free tickets. I’ve always been an Angels fan who never liked the Dodgers, but I made an exception for a few years while Fred was there.

    • jwbiii - Dec 14, 2012 at 3:42 PM

      Nice to see you here and I’m glad you saw this. I thought about you immediately when I saw the headline.

  5. stercuilus65 - Dec 14, 2012 at 5:24 PM

    The firing of Al Campanis was disgraceful especially in light of Dusty Bakers’ equally, if not more, “insensitive comments which landed him zero punishment.

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