Cleveland — You really couldn’t miss him. With the shock of white hair and his regal bearing, he was as impressive and distinctive as his baseball pedigree.
Scott Reid, the legendary baseball scout who served the Tigers for 18 years and the game for more than 50, passed away Tuesday night. He was 74.
“Myself, along with so many others across the baseball community, are saddened to learn of Scott Reid’s passing,” Tigers general manager Al Avila said in a statement. “We were blessed to spend decades working in the trenches alongside Scott.”
Reid played briefly for the Phillies in 1969 and 1970 and then began his scouting career with them. He also worked for the Cubs and Marlins, which is where he hooked up with Avila and former Tigers general manager Dave Dombrowski.
He followed them to the Tigers in 2002.
“We will always remember his passion for baseball, intellect of the game, and his standing as an all-around great talent evaluator, father and person,” Avila said. “Scott was a trusted advisor to many in the Tigers organization, and a dear friend to all.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife, Sherry, son, Brian, and daughter, Lindsay, during this difficult time.”
Tigers manager AJ Hinch crossed paths with Reid often in his days as a big-league scout.
“And once I got this job, even though he wasn’t in the organization anymore, he reached out and congratulated me,” Hinch said. “I know he meant a lot to Scott Bream, who runs our pro scouting department now, and to so many young scouts.
“He was a mentor to a lot of people.”
In 2017, Reid was honored by the scouting community with the Legends in Scouting award.
“He meant a lot to the organization and to a lot of people in the organization,” Hinch said. “He did so much long before I got here. Our thoughts are with his family, his friends, his colleagues and all the people around the game that he touched.
“Gone too soon.”
Derek Hill cameo
The Tigers summoned Derek Hill from Toledo to serve as the 27th man for the doubleheader Wednesday. The last time we saw him, he was walking slowly off the field favoring his shoulder after crashing into the Comerica Park wall making an incredible catch.
“I’ve had some pretty good crashes throughout the years,” Hill said. “I just got a little unlucky with that one. I went in at a weird angle. It was unfortunate, but I am back now and I couldn’t be happier.”
He completed his rehab assignment on Monday and was optioned back to Triple-A Toledo. Which was tough since he was playing regularly for the first time in his big-league career and had three hits in his last eight at-bats before the crash.
“We have to make decisions in real time and our outfield is really crowded now,” Hinch said. “We’re happy where we are at there. We don’t want to carry five outfielders and given the revolving door at shortstop now, and the extra pitcher is definitely needed, even before the rainout (Tuesday) — he’s the odd man out for now.”
Hill. who will rejoin the Mud Hens on Thursday, took the news, as he seems always to do, with grace.
“I didn’t have any expectations going into it,” he said. “I’ve learned to keep an open mind and whatever happens, happens. And whatever team I’m on, I’m going to do my best to help that team win.”
The perspective comes from a seven-year climb through the minor leagues and missing nearly two full seasons after having Tommy John surgery.
“I just realized your career can be turned upside down at any point,” he said. “I had no arm issues before that and it was just one throw. A year and a half later I was finally able to get back on a baseball field.
“I try to stay as positive as I can every single day.”
To be determined
The Tigers are listing TBD as their starter against the White Sox on Sunday. That would be rookie Matt Manning’s turn, but Hinch indicated Monday that they might push him back an extra couple of days.
The rainout Tuesday and the potential for more cancellations on Wednesday forced Hinch to leave things open for now.
“We were originally going to give Manning a couple of bullpens before his next start and push him back to the first game in Texas (Monday),” Hinch said. “With the rainout and the unknown with the weather — it’s still unstable here in Cleveland — we think we’ll get at least one game in.
“But whether we get one or two games in will dictate the weekend pitching plan.”
Around the horn
… Reliever Michael Fulmer is expected to get more tests on his neck on Friday. He’s been with the club in Cleveland, just taking treatment.