The last straw for many was Leyland pulling Rick Porcello after eight very strong innings against the Pirates yesterday, despite only allowing one hit in 84 pitches. Going by the book, Leyland went with his closer to start the 9th. Jose Valverde got the save, but it was nerve-wracking, to say the very least.
In the clubhouse Leyland was quoted during his FSD post game presser, saying, "fans don't understand."
It didn't go over well.
Leyland continued his complaining while talking to the assembled media this afternoon. He let loose with his feelings on continually being second guessed.
Jim Leyland more concerned with team winning than pleasing fans as he drops an F-bomb filled tirade on media in his office today.
The Facebook page of talk show hosts Mike Valenti and Terry Foster, of the Tigers' flagship station 97.1 the Ticket, has more details.
Via Valenti and Foster:
Leyland asked are you glad you pulled Rick? "I'm glad I did it. i'll do it tonight if we have the same bleeping situation if it gives us the best bleeping chance to win the bleeping game".
The Tigers' skipper continued:
Leyland: "I don't listen to talk shows.. guys that don't know bleep about baseball. Everyone forgets we won the game"
As you might guess, the "bleeps" were F-bombs.
Though he did admit there was some validity to the fan's howls:
"But that one yesterday was a legitimate second-guess. But, you know what, everybody forgets that the Tigers won the game."
Is Leyland on the receiving end of pressure from all sides, ownership, management, media and fans, thanks to his team's slow start in a poor division? Could this be his way of blowing off some steam?
My suggestion for Leyland? You want the second guessing to stop? Then win some damn games.
UPDATE: Mlive.com has a transcription of Leyland's rant. Here's a taste:
But I don't get into that. It has no bearing on what decision I make. Somebody was chewing my (expletive) out the other day, the fans were second-guessing me because I hadn't gotten the relievers enough work. Well, if you want me to take (Justin) Verlander and (Max) Scherzer out in the fourth inning from now on and pitch (Brayan) Villarreal and (Enrique) Gonzalez, then I'll do it for you. Is that what you want? That's what I'll do for you. Is that what you want? Because I don't pay attention to you (expletive) stuff, because that's what it is. I don't pay attention to it.