One element of my conversation with Paul Molitor that didn’t make it into my Wednesday column: His appreciation for what fellow Cretin High alum Matt Birk experienced this year.
Molitor grew up in the Brewers’ organization, and made a painful decision to leave Milwaukee for Toronto. As a Blue Jay, he won a World Series ring at the age of 37.
Birk grew up in the Vikings’ organization and was forced out of the organization, in part by then-head coach Brad Childress. They didn’t get along. So Birk signed with the Baltimore Ravens, and this season, at the age of 36, he won a Super Bowl title.
Molitor said he doesn’t know Birk well. ``But we have met a couple of times and like most people that meet him, I think he’s an impressive guy,’’ Molitor said. ``I admire his humility and intelligence and I respect his opinions and his outspokenness. I played in his golf tournament a couple of years ago.
``His is just a story of perseverance for a guy who wasn’t sure what he was going to do when he got pushed out of here, and he got a chance to reach the top. I can relate to that, his first championship coming late in his career. I’m happy for him.’’
And one more thought from Molitor on his current ``special assistant’’ position, in which he works primarily with minor-league player development.
``I’ve got talented people to work with, in terms of our other player development people,’’ he said. ``As part of the organization, I’m hoping that we’ve hit bottom and that the trend forward continues. It’s nice for me to see some of these kids on the verge of getting the opportunity to play in the big leagues.’’
My new radio schedule: I'm on 1500ESPN at 12:20 on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday with Judd Zulgad and Jeff Dubay. Sunday Sports Talk remains the same, 10-noon on Sundays. We'll host the Ron Gardenhire Show again this year from 9:30-10. Thanks for listening, as always.
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