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July 23, 2013

Tampa's Scott gives the credit to 'Honest John' Farrell

(Continued)

Scott has some good stories from his days with Farrell — one of those being the time when OSU played at Texas A&M and the two baseball programs had a bench-clearing brawl.

The story behind the brawl is quite lengthy. To sum it up, the way Scott recalled it, the Texas A&M fans heckled his OSU team and also egged and shoe-polished the Cowboys’ bus during a three-game series there.

“One guy at the top deck of the stadium had a snickers bar tied to a fishing pole and he threw it down to first base,” Scott said. “We had a heavyset kid that played first base ... and they were like, ‘Oh, we’re going to try to catch (him).”

All that didn’t sit well with then-OSU slugger Jose Virgil, who glared into Texas A&M’s dugout and up at their fans during a home run trot coming around third. Virgil then spit and stomped on home plate. When an A&M reliever threw behind Virgil during his next at-bat, chaos ensued.

Farrell was holding back OSU and A&M players left and right, trying to break things up, Scott said.

“He was holding back Jose Virgil ... and then turned him loose and he went in the pile and just started throwing bodies,” Scott said. “It was pretty funny.

“Just seeing Honest John taking people ... (and) grabbing them by the back of their neck and just lifting them — because John’s big,” Scott said. “You ever shake his hand? His hands are (strong).”

Honest John is a no-nonsense manager. You wouldn’t want to mess with him. And he is always straight with his answers, as Scott noted. But at the same time, although he’s not Maddon’s clone at all, Farrell knows the importance of his team having fun like Maddon does. Farrell’s leadership is a big reason the Red Sox are fighting the Rays for first place this week.

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