Wednesday, September 26, 2001

Reds notebook


Ex-Phillie Boone a faithful alumnus

By John Fay
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        PHILADELPHIA — Reds manager Bob Boone was, is and always will be a Philadelphia Phillie at heart. He has been rooting for them all year.

        “I find myself pulling for them subconsciously,” he said. “The underdog. You want them to beat the big, bad Atlanta Braves.”

        But that doesn't mean Boone doesn't want to beat the Phillies in the three games here and the three games that close the regular season at Cinergy Field.

        “I'm still pulling for them,” he said “But it's like when you play against your dad or your son in golf. You want them to do good, but you also want to beat their brains out.”

        The Reds' six games with the Phillies very well could determine whether Philadelphia makes the playoffs. The Phils entered Tuesday night tied for first place with the Atlanta Braves in the National League East.

        Boone has downplayed the spoiler role all year. That doesn't mean he isn't trying to rain on Philly's parade.

        “When you're out of it like we are, you always want to bring your "A' game for the other teams (in the race),” Boone said. “You can affect the pennant. It's all you've got to play for ...”

        Boone broke in with the Phillies in 1972. He played with them through 1981 before finishing his career with the California Angels and Kansas City Royals.

        Phillies manager Larry Bowa is a former teammate and good friend of Boone's.

        “It killed me,” Boone said jokingly. “But I voted for him for manager of the year.”

        Boone used Monday's off-day to play in a Phillies golf outing. He and another former teammate, Greg Luzinski, were in the winning foursome.

        “I crashed the party,” Boone said.

        He's hoping to crash another Phillies party over the last 12 games of the season.

        SENIOR BACK:

Reds hitting coach Ken Griffey Sr. rejoined the team Tuesday, having missed five games after being hospitalized with shortness of breath.

        “I feel like a pincushion,” he said. “I had every test possible.”

        Nothing major was found wrong. Griffey's blood-pressure medication was adjusted.

        Griffey says he feels fine and could resume a full workload, but he has been ordered to ease back into it.

        “They told me to relax and take it easy,” Griffey said.

        AARON UPDATE:

Aaron Boone's left thumb was examined by team medical director Dr. Tim Kremchek Monday.

        It will be determined today if the thumb can be set and put in a cast, or if Boone will need a pin inserted.

        “He was in a lot of pain,” Bob Boone said.

        OTHER INJURIES:

None of the Reds' walking wounded — catcher Jason LaRue (shoulder), utilityman Wilton Guerrero (concussion) or shortstop Pokey Reese (shoulder) — was in Tuesday's starting lineup.

        “LaRue's still tender and doesn't have the range of motion,” Boone said.

        Reese was going to throw for the first time in four days before Tuesday's game to test his shoulder.

        Guerrero was still suffering from a headache.

        GRAVES NOMINATED:

Reds closer Danny Graves was among the 30 nominees for the Roberto Clemente Award. The award is presented annually to the major-league player who combines on-the-field skills with work devoted to the community. A player from each team is nominated. The winner will be announced at the World Series.

        ROTATION:

Elmer Dessens will start Friday's opener of the three-game series against Montreal, followed by Jose Acevedo and Joey Hamilton.

        “But I reserve the right to change my mind,” Boone said.

        CASTRO HURT:

Juan Castro left Tuesday's game in the sixth inning with a strained left knee.

        Boone brought in Reese to play second base and moved Walker to shortstop. It was Walker's first appearance at shortstop as a major-leaguer. Castro may be able to play Thursday.

        DUNN STREAK OVER:

Adan Dunn snapped his 12-game hitting streak, going 0-for-3 with two walks.

       



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