Weaver: Don't give it a thought

October 01, 1994|By Jim Henneman | Jim Henneman,Sun Staff Writer

The last time he was in Baltimore and the job was open, Earl Weaver came out of retirement to manage the Orioles.

He's in town again this weekend, but even if owner Peter Angelos were tempted to ask, Weaver has no desire to see if a third time, as opposed to the second, would be the charm. "None whatsoever," Weaver quickly replied when asked if he had any interest. "Not even for a million dollars."

It was more than eight years ago that Weaver, while here visiting his stepdaughter, was lured back into uniform by the persuasive words and hefty checkbook of late owner Edward Bennett Williams. Weaver replaced Joe Altobelli, who had succeeded him before the World Series championship season of 1983, only to find that the Orioles had lost their magic. He walked away for good after the 1986 season and, despite several inquiries, has not returned to baseball.

Weaver's return this time was triggered by Jim Speros, owner of Baltimore's Canadian Football League team, who has created a Ring of Honor at Memorial Stadium. The ex-Orioles manager and Hall of Fame pitcher Jim Palmer will be the sixth and seventh inductees during ceremonies at halftime of tonight's game against Ottawa.

During a question-and-answer session yesterday, Weaver did give endorsements to two of his former players -- Davey Johnson and Rick Dempsey -- who are being considered to replace Johnny Oates.

"But I'm not going to rank them," said Weaver. "Both of them were the kind of guys who were always asking questions. They always wanted to know why we did something."

Weaver acknowledged that Johnson has the better managerial background, but played down Dempsey's inexperience.

"Davey's got the track record, but you can't say Dempsey's inexperienced. He showed the desire by going out and managing [two years] in the minor leagues and in Puerto Rico," said Weaver.

"It isn't like he's never managed before -- and you know he's got the desire," Weaver said of his former catcher and occasional verbal sparring partner.

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