Leyland accepts suspension quietly
Tigers manager plans on remaining out of sight during games
CLEVELAND -- Tigers manager Jim Leyland was quite visible during his arguments with umpires earlier this week in Texas. But he's going to take his three-game suspension quietly, so much so that he planned on being pretty much invisible once games start and hitting coach Lloyd McClendon takes the managerial reins.
Leyland began serving the penalty in Friday's series opener with the Indians.
"I'll be on the field and everything up until game time," Leyland said, "and then I'll be totally out of sight. I will not have anything to do with this ballgame tonight in any way, shape or form. I've chosen not to sit up in the press box or in the stands or anything, because what you do is you set yourself up for attention. They're going to have the cameras on you, saying, 'There's Jim Leyland.'
"I don't want that attention. I'm a grown man. I accept my penalty. I'll move forward with it. I'll be out of sight. I'll adhere to what they told me I should do. And that's the end of it."
By rule, Leyland is allowed to be in the ballpark once games begin, but not in the dugout or clubhouse. He can be there before the game.
It's new territory for Leyland in his 17 seasons of Major League managerial experience. He has been suspended before, but not for this long, and not as a Tiger. Since there's no appeals process for managers, the suspension -- handed down Thursday -- begins immediately and runs through the weekend. Effectively, there isn't really much Leyland can say about it, just serve it.
Leyland was in the manager's office in the visitors' clubhouse at Progressive Field as players filed in during the afternoon, and he sat in the dugout for batting practice before heading somewhere else for the game. McClendon, who managed in Pittsburgh for five years, has finished out games managing when Leyland has been ejected, and he usually manages split-squad games in Spring Training, so this was far from a new experience for him.
Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.