KISSIMMEE, Fla. — It is a spring training tradition for the manager and some of his coaches to sit in lawn chairs next to the team's dugout. Charlie Manuel assumed his customary spot Sunday at Osceola County Stadium with pitching coach Rich Dubee to his left and catching coach Mick Billmeyer to his right.
He did not expect to be struck by a man riding a tricycle. Ah, the hazards of being a big-league manager.
The Astros, like most teams, organize gimmicky in-between innings contests. One of them was a two-man tricycle race from dugout to dugout, along the warning track.
"I saw him coming," Manuel said. "I thought, 'We better get over.' He got me. Big ol' three-wheeler."
The tricycle ran over Manuel's toes. The manager jumped up to avoid further contact. Everyone around him, including Dubee and Billmeyer, could not stop laughing.
"Dubee is supposed to stop him there," Manuel said. "He's supposed to save me. He just let me get run over."
After the Phillies one-hit Houston in a 7-1 victory, Manuel recounted the collision outside the visiting clubhouse. Phillies senior adviser Dallas Green, who scouted the game, saw Manuel.
"Watch those tricycles," Green yelled.
Nothing like some spring training humor.
"That was pretty good," Manuel said.
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