Cubs manager Lou Piniella, curious about the popular social networking website Twitter following news yesterday from White Sox camp that manager Ozzie Guillen would be tweeting on a regular basis this Spring Training, had a team intern create a personal account for him under the screen name “Sweet Lou 1943.”
“Look, yesterday I knew nothing about this Twitter thing, and now I’m a Twittering fool. It’s kind of like sending one of those electronic messages through my WebTV account,” said Piniella, as he punched away on his Blackberry. “M-e-e-t-i-n-g T-r-a-m-m-e-l-l f-o-r r-i-b-s i-n h-a-l-f h-o-u-r a-t D-o-n n C-h-a-r-l-i-e-s.”
The technology challenged Piniella, however, was unaware that his messages on Twitter go out to the public, of which he already had over 2,200 followers after just a half day on the site. Fans were given insight into the Cubs skipper’s real thoughts about his team through a barrage of morning tweets that Piniella had intended to send only to bench coach and good friend Matt Sinatro.
“T-h-a-t F-u-k-u-d-o-m-e s-t-i-l-l s-u-c-k-s,” tweeted Piniella. “W-h-o t-h-e h-e-l-l i-s t-h-i-s B-i-r-d g-u-y, r-e-m-i-n-d-s m-e o-f M-i-l-t-o-n B-r-a-d-l-e-y. I-c-k!”
When the Cubs public relations staff confronted Piniella about the negative tweeting activity coming from his account, he was dumbfounded.
“I don’t know what you’re talking about? I’ve been texting my scouting report to Matty all morning. Come take a look,” said Piniella, pointing to his phone. “Z-a-m-b-r-a-n-o h-a-s n-t l-o-s-t a p-o-u-n-d, s-t-i-l-l a f-a-t a-s-s. S-a-m-a-r-d-j-a n-e-v-e-r g-o-n-n-a m-a-k-e i-t a-s p-i-t-c-h-e-r, s-h-o-u-l-d t-r-y f-o-o-t-b-a-l-l.”
By Jeremy Barewin