CLEVELAND—Flatly denying that he’s had any influence whatsoever over his team’s success, Cleveland Indians manager Terry Francona admitted Thursday that he was amazed people still think managing baseball was hard in any way. “If I’m being honest, there is really no strategy or skill involved at all—I could probably take a nap in the dugout and it wouldn’t make a difference,” said Francona, 59, who explained his entire plan going into every game was to have players continue to hit in their predetermined order and tell them “nice job,” when they made a good catch. “Everybody on the team already knows how baseball works, and there are only, like, four things you can do anyway. Plus, I have a bunch of assistant coaches who specialize in helping them with swings and pitching. The team could save millions if they just had an unpaid intern doing this.” Francona added that despite the ease of his job, there was a certain art to slapping players on the back.
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