Notes: Gardy applauds Bell's work
I-35W tragedy postpones game, groundbreaking ceremony
MINNEAPOLIS -- The Royals held a press conference Wednesday afternoon at the Metrodome to announce that manager Buddy Bell will resign his post at the end of the season. He will join the front office for 2008 as a senior advisor to general manager Dayton Moore.
Bell cited that he wanted to spend more time with his family, a reason that Twins manager Ron Gardenhire understands completely.
"Everybody has their reasons and I'm sure Buddy has his," Gardenhire said. "He's been a very good baseball man for a long time and he will remain that, no matter which way he goes. I'm sure he's got a plan for what he'd like to do from here on out."
Gardenhire applauded what Bell has done with the Royals since he took over the managerial role in 2005.
"He's a great manager and he's done a super job with that ballclub over there," Gardenhire said. "You can see where they're at and how they've developed, and they're getting better and better. He's obviously helped turn that organization around to the point where they're real close to having a really good ballclub."
Former Mariners manager, Mike Hargrove, abruptly announced his resignation last month saying that his passion for the game had begun to fade.
"It was the same thing with [Hargrove], his ballclub was going along pretty good. There's a lot of reasons and a lot of things going on. Sometimes it gets to a point where you have to take a step back and see where you're at. I guess that happened to both of them, probably."
Emergency: Prior to Wendesday's game, at about 6:05 p.m. CT, the four-lane I-35W bridge near the Metrodome collapsed into the Mississippi River.
Twins officials contemplated cancelling the game, but were concerned that an influx of traffic into the area could impede rescue vehicles. There was a moment of prayer before the game and fans were encouraged to stay off their cell phones and exit calmly if they were going to leave.
The team announced that Thursday's game and new ballpark groundbreaking festivities have been postponed and will be rescheduled for a later date.
Game on: With reports that the clubhouse is unsatisfied with the moves and lack of moves that the front office made before Tuesday's 3 p.m. CT trade deadline, the managerial staff sent its own message to the players.
Typed onto the same piece of paper as the lineups and times for pregame warmups was the statement, "If you feel cheated, take your ball and go home, or get it on -- period."
Gardenhire hopes that the off-the-field situations don't distract the team's play.
"It's just reinforcing what we think. They're things you can't control, why are you worried about it?" Gardenhire said. "We'll just worry about what we can do, and that's play baseball. That's all I'm telling them."
Trouble in left: Lew Ford was back in left field on Wednesday after misplaying a fly ball in Tuesday's game. Ford has had trouble throughout the season picking up fly balls off the Metrodome's white roof.
"I actually want to give him more opportunities. Lew's been in this Dome for a long, long time," Gardenhire said. "It happens. This roof is not easy and it's a concentration thing. Lew should be fine. I don't know if it's just him, putting him out in center -- not playing every day makes the roof tougher."
Ford went 2-for-3 with an RBI and two runs scored Tuesday night at the plate, making it difficult for Gardenhire to drop him from the lineup.
Personal time: Rondell White did not arrive at the Metrodome until after batting practice on Wednesday because he was attending to a family issue concerning his pregnant wife. Gardenhire penciled Jason Kubel into the DH spot, but White was on the bench during the game.
Everyone's watching: Tuesday night's Twins game against the Royals was the most watched game of the season on FSN North. The game achieved an 11.1 rating, beating out the previous high of 10.7.
Down on the farm: Left fielder John McDonald went 3-for-4 in Triple-A Rochester's 3-1 win over Scranton/Wilkes-Barre on Tuesday. McDonald raised his average to .305 and drove in a run. Starter Brian Bass pitched 7 1/3 innings and only allowed one earned run on five hits while striking out five. ... Double-A New Britain beat Erie, 6-2, on Tuesday with help from Rashad Eldridge's three-run home run in the second inning. Trevor Plouffe went 3-for-4 with a double and a run driven in. ... Class A Beloit beat Fort Wayne, 7-4, on Tuesday. Wilson Ramos went 3-for-4 with three RBIs and Joe Benson knocked three hits as well and drove in two runs.
Up next: Thursday's Twins game against the Royals has been postponed due to the collapse of the I-35W bridge.
Leslie Parker is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.