Next, Kelly walked by. "You blew that one, Frankie baby," he said. "Don't they give you a day to get orientated?"
Jump to Aug. 5. Viola left 31 tickets for friends and relatives who hoped to see him snap his two-game losing streak in the second game of a Yankee Stadium doubleheader. There was a potential problem, though. The Twins had played an afternoon game in Toronto the day before and had flown to New York that night, and Viola couldn't get anyone to eat Italian with him. A bunch of guys were going to Rusty Staub's restaurant for ribs and Viola went along.
Then he went out and beat the Yankees 11-2. He never got into serious trouble, although he did start kicking the rubber four times after allowing two hits and a wild pitch in the third inning. Did he plan to switch his eating pattern to ribs the day before each start?
"Nah," says Viola. "I don't even like ribs. Italian food got me this far. That's one thing I don't change."