Former Detroit Tigers star Miguel Cabrera released a statement in honor of former manager Jim Leyland being announced to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame. Cabrera is “grateful” for what Leyland has taught him in the past, via MLB insider Hector Gomez.
“Congratulations Boss, more than proudly grateful for having you with a manager, you took my game to another level,” Cabrera said. “Well deserved and the two lines that you always told me ‘you are going to do something in the game today' and ‘if you don't want to play I will put someone else'. Love you JEFE.”
Leyland is best known for taking the then Florida Marlins to their first World Series title in the 1997 season where the team was a Wild card squad. While Cabrera was also with the Marlins early in his career, him and Leyland didn't cross paths until they were both with the Tigers starting in 2008.
At the time, it was Cabrera's first season with Detroit compared to Leyland who was with the team since 2006. What would result was two American League pennants when the both of them were on the Tigers.
Leyland has emotional message
Besides the Tigers and Marlins, Leyland was also the manager of the Pittsburgh Pirates to start his coaching career from 1986-1996. Leyland had an emotional message when hearing the news that he would be inducted according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
“It's the highest honor you can get in our business, and I'm thrilled, excited, surprised and flattered,” Leyland, 78, said over Zoom shortly after the announcement was made. “All of those words come into play when you're thinking about this.”
There's no doubt that Leyland is considered a legend in the baseball world. According to USA Today, Leyland earned “15 of 16 votes from a committee considering non-playing personnel whose careers stretched past 1980, Leyland, 78, won 1,769 games.”