LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Dude, where's Joe Girardi's car?
The answer, at least on Tuesday morning, was the parking lot at Ed Smith Stadium in Sarasota, Fla. -- the spring home of the Orioles. And the Yankees' manager was none too pleased.
"We had an interesting night," Girardi said, re-telling the story for reporters after chugging his morning coffee.
After the final out of New York's Grapefruit League tie against Baltimore, Girardi couldn't find the keys to his rental car, digging in vain through the manager's office, the dugout bench and his own bags.
A scowling Girardi was forced to take the team bus back to Tampa, Fla., abandoning his personal vehicle in Sarasota. He said the last time he saw the keys was when hitting coach Kevin Long went back to the car to retrieve a hat he'd forgotten.
"He claims he gave them back to me," Girardi said. "I can't say he didn't, but I can't say he did. I checked everywhere."
Long is holding true to his version of the story, saying, "I gave them back. Maybe he's got a lot on his mind."
In any event, traveling secretary Ben Tuliebitz provided another car for Girardi to drive to the Bombers' afternoon tilt with the Braves and will now get down to sorting out the details with the rental agency.