The day after still stings for discouraged Olson

April 25, 1993|By Peter Schmuck | Peter Schmuck,Staff Writer

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The day after his temporary demotion, reliever Gregg Olson still was feeling the sting of the most discouraging moment of his pro career.

"I'm in the same mood," he said. "I've just had a little bit longer to think about it."

Olson pitched a scoreless inning of middle relief on Friday night, andlooked aggressive on the mound, which left room to wonder if the bullpen realignment was something of a wake-up call. Olson did not entirely dismiss the possibility.

"I guess there's not a much bigger motivation than having somebody tell you you can't do the job," he said.

Olson went to the bullpen on Friday afternoon to sort out his thoughts and emotions after he was informed that he no longer was the closer, but he wasn't alone out there for long. He was joined by relief mates Jim Poole and Todd Frohwirth, who provided a sounding board for his frustration.

"It was just to give him an ear to listen or a shoulder to lean on if he needed it," Poole said. "We're a pretty tight group out there. When one of us is hurting, we take care of him. Gregg's the leader of our bullpen. He's still looked upon that way, no matter what the situation is now."

There was room to wonder what was going on when Olson began warming up in the ninth inning of yesterday's 6-5 win against the Kansas City Royals.

Was he back in the stopper role already? Did Oates get him up to show him that he still had confidence in him? What gives?

None of the above. Olson got up on his own because he wanted to get some work in.

"I'm just practicing, so that I can get good," he said.

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