Brad Mills pinch-hit for boss

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL -

MI­AMI — Among the most un­likely All-Stars was a for­mer 17th-round draft pick with one ca­reer home run.

Brad Mills didn’t swing a bat Tues­day night. But he did pinch-hit.

The Cleve­land In­di­ans bench coach man­aged the Amer­i­can League team as a re­place­ment for In­di­ans Man­ager Terry Fran­cona, who is re­cov­er­ing from a pro­ce­dure last week to cor­rect an ir­reg­u­lar heart­beat.

“Get­ting this re­spon­si­bil­ity is very hum­bling,” Mills said. “I’m thrilled to be here, but I def­i­nitely would love to have Terry sit­ting here in this chair.”

If not for Fran­cona’s health is­sue, Mills, 60, would have taken part in the game as a coach. Now he’s re­spon­si­ble for run­ning a 32-man team and get­ting most of the play­ers into the game.

He had some help with the start­ing lineup from Fran­cona, who paid Mills a visit be­fore the In­di­ans’ game Sun­day.

“When he came in the club­house he sat down, and the first thing he said to me is, ‘OK, who’s hit­ting sec­ond?’ ” Mills said. Both knew it was a given Jose Al­tuve of the Astros would lead off. Jose Ramirez of the In­di­ans was sec­ond.

Mills was as­sisted by the rest of the Cleve­land staff and by Tampa Bay Man­ager Kevin Cash, who pre­vi­ously worked for the In­di­ans.

Mills

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