Royals manager Ned Yost grew up a San Francisco Giants fan — he said Monday that he wore out 15 Giants hats — but he also attended many Oakland A’s games because he lived in Dublin, Calif., on the east side of the San Francisco Bay.
But he wasn’t at Oakland Coliseum as a paying customer.
“I hate to say this, but we used to sneak in,” Yost said Monday during a news conference. “We’d hop the fence and hide in the bathroom until BP started, and we’d run out and shag fly balls and catch them.”
Yost also retold the story of how he got Vida Blue’s autograph and turned it into a snack.
“I ran down to get his autograph, but I didn’t have anything for him to sign. The only thing I had was a dollar bill,” Yost said. “And I was the happiest guy in the stadium until about the sixth inning, and I got hungry and I spent it on a Colossal Dog.”
About 20 years later, Yost said Blue gave him an autographed dollar bill at a clinic they ran together.
American League rules
Games one and two, and if needed, six and seven, will be played at Kauffman Stadium and under American League rules, so the Giants will need a designated hitter.
For game one it will be Michael Morse, who played 84 games in left field and 43 at first base in the regular season. Giants manager Bruce Bochy was asked if he might use Juan Perez in left field and move game-five NLCS hero Travis Ishikawa to DH because of the large outfield in Kansas City.
“I don’t see any changes right now with how we’re going to start the game, and that’s Ishi in left field,” Bochy said. “But we know we have that option of a guy that’s probably a little faster.”
Yost and Madison Bumgarner may share a taste in favorite pitchers.
Bumgarner, the Giants’ game one starter, was a Braves fan growing up in North Carolina and listed Atlanta’s big three — John Smoltz, Tom Glavine and Greg Maddux — as some of the pitchers he looked up to. Yost was a coach in Atlanta during that era.
“I just liked watching good pitching, really,” Bumgarner said. “I remember Randy Johnson, there were a lot of guys, Kevin Brown. The list could go on.”
World Series umpires
Ted Barrett, who was the crew chief for the Royals-Angels AL Division Series, is among the three-regular-season crew chiefs on the World Series umpiring crew.
The others are Jeff Nelson, who will serve as the replay official for games one and two, and Jeff Kellogg, who was in charge for the the Orioles-Tigers ALDS, who is the crew chief for the World Series.
In game one, Jerry Meals will serve as the home plate umpire and Eric Cooper will work first base, Jim Reynolds second base, Ted Barrett third base, Hunter Wendelstedt left field and Kellogg right field. Meals will become the replay official in game three and Nelson will join the on-field crew.
Negro Leagues museum activities
The Royals’ success has spread good cheer throughout the region, and the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum is feeling the positive vibes.
The beginning of the school year until the holiday season has traditionally been a slow time for the museum in the 18th and Vine District.
Because the Royals not only are appearing in the postseason for the first time since 1985 but have pushed through to the World Series, the baseball interest meter has never been higher, at least in the 25 years since the museum was incorporated.
“No one cheers harder for the Royals than we do,” museum president Bob Kendrick said. “It has a direct impact on our business.”
The museum has added several events this week, including a free watch party for game one, starting at 6 p.m.
Also, author Sharon Robinson, the daughter of baseball legend Jackie Robinson, will read to students from Faxon Elementary School at 10 a.m. Wednesday and will participate in a public question-and-answer session about her father. The program is free with a paid admission to the museum.
Also on Wednesday, former Royals Frank White, Willie Wilson and Danny Jackson will discuss the 1985 World Series on a panel moderated by former Kansas City Star columnist Joe Posnanaski. That begins at 11:30 a.m.
At 1:30 p.m., the museum will host an autograph session with former Negro Leagues player Ulysses Hollimon, umpire Bob Motley and former major-league pitcher Diego Segui.
The Wednesday activities are free with a paid admission.
A hometown company wants your jeans Kansas City — specifically your Levi’s.
“As Kansas City prepares to cheer on our beloved Royals, we ask that Kansas Citians support the hometown team and wear their hometown Lee jeans,” Joe Dzialo, president of Lee Jeans, wrote in an open letter to Kansas City residents.
Dzialo pointed out that the maker of Levi’s calls San Francisco home.
So on Wednesday, Lee Jeans will host a Blue Jean Trade-In from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at its headquarters at 9001 W. 67th Street in Merriam.
“We ask all Kansas Citians to trade in and donate a used pair of jeans, specifically, but not limited to those other jeans that begin with the letter ‘L,’” Dzialo wrote. “We’ll send them back to San Francisco, but for a good cause of course, because we’ll also donate an equal number of Lee jeans to homeless shelters here in Kansas City.”
Everyone who drops off a pair of old jeans, no matter what the brand, will receive a coupon for 85 percent off an item on Lee.com, in honor of the Royal’s World Series win in 1985.
People also will be entered to win a pair of tickets to Wednesday night’s World Series game. There will be two winners, each winning a pair of tickets.
“We think that just the spotlight that the Royals have brought to Kansas City is fantastic,” said Liz Cahill, vice president of marketing.