Oates' first priority is getting over injury hurdle

May 24, 1991

Questions and answers with new Baltimore Orioles manager Johnny Oates:

Question: Frank Robinson had high hopes for a long stay when he became manager. What are your hopes?

Answer: Anyone in this position starts with high hopes. If you don't, your chances of lasting long aren't good. It's not going to be an easy job. It never is. We can't come back to a .500-level team in one inning or one game.

Q: Will you keep your coaches?

A: The only change will be Curt Motton. He has been a scouting coach. He will take my position at first base.

Q: Have you thought about player changes?

A: We don't have any now. Our first priority is to get the nagging injuries healthy. Coming out of spring training, we all felt how important it would be to have Glenn Davis with us all year. That's an important part. We have [Mike] Devereaux hurting a little bit. We have [Dwight] Evans hurting a little. We have Billy Ripken hurting. When you get those players healthy, we'll start working on the larger picture.

Q: Watching as a coach, have you seen things you'd have done differently?

A: We all manage baseball as we watch the ballgame. Of course, there have been numerous times this year, if I had been in position, I would have done something different. But there can only be one chief during a baseball game. . . . Now is my opportunity to [make decisions] every night.

Q: What might be your stamp on the team?

A: The first thing is, if you can't have fun in this profession, you can't have fun doing anything. But you have fun by doing one thing -- winning. You can't have fun getting your head beat in every day. We'll try to create a positive, intensified, enthusiastic team.

Baltimore Sun Articles
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.