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Jim Leyland was (is?) a crooner and “the guy can sing”

Feb 27, 2013, 11:19 AM EDT

Jim Leyland AP

Next weekend the Tigers are holding an organization-wide reunion for more than 100 former players and Jim Leyland has some big plans for the event, via Tom Gage of the Detroit News:

“Jim is going to sing at our dinner,” said former Tigers first baseman John Young, organizer of the first TigerTown reunion next weekend in Lakeland.

Leyland was a minor-league catcher in the Tigers organization from 1964-70. And many of those players expected to attend the weekend event will remember he used to sing during minor-league bus trips.

“A lot of Drifters songs,” Young said. “But the guy can sing.” And former Tigers pitcher Bill Slayback can play the guitar. So the two of them — Slayback and Leyland — will provide the entertainment.

If that doesn’t end up on YouTube we should just shut down the internet.

  1. cur68 - Feb 27, 2013 at 11:34 AM

    Well. Fancy that. Jimmy Smokes has the pipes for singing? Now way. I’ve long admired his theatrics in umpire arguing. His timing and delivery should have a their own award (“The Leyland for best performance in Umpire Shaming goes to . . .”) but I never expected singing.

    I expect a full review of Smokey Jim’s oeuvre.

    • heyblueyoustink - Feb 27, 2013 at 11:50 AM

      I’m hoping for some Coolio, personally.

      • cur68 - Feb 27, 2013 at 11:57 AM

        Think he can stretch to some Rush? Man, that would be great.

      • heyblueyoustink - Feb 27, 2013 at 1:02 PM

        I’d be down for some “Train to Bankok” from the old crooner.

    • historiophiliac - Feb 27, 2013 at 12:23 PM

      You’d best remember who you’re talking about. Jim Leyland is the God Damn Manager. There’ll be none of that silly Rush nonsense.

      • cur68 - Feb 27, 2013 at 12:27 PM

        Yeah, Bonds found out that you don’t mess with Today’s Tom Sawyer.

      • historiophiliac - Feb 27, 2013 at 12:30 PM

        I hope you develop trypanophobia…or a severe Rush-aversion…or a severe Rush-aversion that requires a shot after you become trypanophobic!

        I see you don’t have too much phlegm to troll. Boooo!!!

        /throws tissue

      • cur68 - Feb 27, 2013 at 12:45 PM

        No phlegm at all. Just a lot of black bile. My humours are out of whack.

      • wlschneider09 - Feb 27, 2013 at 11:09 PM

        I’d guess you’ve already seen this Cur, but just in case:

  2. mattintoledo - Feb 27, 2013 at 11:50 AM

    A couple years ago (or so), the Tigers made a trip to the Motown Museum and there was video of Leyland singing. It was surprising how good he was. Apparently, the smoking hasn’t killed the pipes since those bus trips in the minors.

    • philliesblow - Feb 27, 2013 at 12:46 PM

      Here’s a video clip of that visit after the Conan commercial lead-in. I love The Stylistics, but there is something wrong about him singing a Philly soul tune in the Motown museum.

  3. harvupdyke - Feb 27, 2013 at 11:59 AM

    That as pure gold! You must post that audio when it becomes available.

    On a side note…I hope Mike Kilkenny from the 68 team retells the story of Leyland crapping his pants behind home plate during a minor league game the 2 played together. That’s the stuff legends are made of.

    • adderalljack - Feb 27, 2013 at 12:29 PM

      Had not heard that one before. It now replaces “Gates Brown (pinch hitting) sliding into second with 2 hotdogs stuffed in his jersey” as my favorite from the 60’s.

  4. historiophiliac - Feb 27, 2013 at 12:25 PM

    Thank you, Aaron, for our daily dose of Tigers awesomeness. <3

  5. Old Gator - Feb 27, 2013 at 2:40 PM

    She may get wooly…
    Young girls they do get wooly…

  6. gbwally - Feb 27, 2013 at 2:56 PM

    Its true, Saw him at centannis in Milwaukee after a preseason game a few years back, singing along with the piano guy and smoking away!

  7. wlschneider09 - Feb 27, 2013 at 11:10 PM

    Yes, but was he wearing pants?

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