Ozzie advises Fredi to take some credit

ATLANTA — Humble by nature, Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez predictably gave credit to his players for clinching a playoff berth.

Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen, however, told his friend to share the wealth. Actually, Guillen’s advise was for Gonzalez to pat himself on the back as well.

“I congratulated Fredi, and he was like, ‘They players did a pretty good job. They played well,’ ” Guillen said. “I said, ‘Fredi, you’ve got to say, ‘I did it too. Because the day you don’t win, it’s going to be your fault. You better celebrate and take some credit too.’ “

Guillen pointed out to Gonzalez that last year, when Atlanta stumbled in September, and didn’t make the playoffs, people were calling for Gonzalez’s job.

“They say, ‘You didn’t [manage good]. This year, take a little credit,’ ” Guillen said.

The suggestion to accept some credit, Guillen said, came from Bobby Cox. The legendary Braves’ manager made the suggestion to Guillen in 2005. That year, Guillen guided the White Sox to a World Series title.

Guillen and Cox were named Managers of the Year.

“When we both won Manager of the Year,” Guillen said. “I was at the podium, saying, “You know, the guys played well. I’m lucky to have these great players.’ When I sat back at my table, he walked up to me and said, ‘You better take credit to yourself.’ I said, ‘Why?’ He said, ‘Because, when you’re in last place, they will fire you. So take a little credit for yourself.’ “

Joe Frisaro

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