Mike Aviles pranks Jose Ramirez by parking his car on the field
It was a typical day at the Indians' spring complex on Thursday morning. The sun was shining. Palm trees swayed in the breeze. And Jose Ramirez's car was parked on the infield at shortstop on Field 1 at Cleveland's practice facility.
It's a beautiful morning in Goodyear. The sun is out, birds are chirping... and Jose Ramirez's car is at shortstop. pic.twitter.com/hRLpI39t2i- Jordan Bastian (@MLBastian) March 26, 2015
The mastermind behind the prank remains unknown, but the driver was clubhouse clown Mike Aviles, who was spied sprinting to the players' parking lot early in the morning. Aviles had swiped the keys to Ramirez's white BMW and -- on behalf of his teammates -- decided the time had come to teach the young shortstop a lesson in parking etiquette.
"We just saw his car parked out there," Aviles explained. "It was a little far from the curb. It looked a little awkward. There were a lot of spaces open, so we just figured, let's just park it somewhere a little more comfortable for him. We put it at shortstop so it felt comfortable."
It turns out that Ramirez has a reputation for parking his car wherever he feels like it.
When it happened again Thursday, Aviles stepped in.
"He wanted to park on the side," Aviles said with a grin. "It was like, 'All right, well, since we'll just park everywhere, let's park everywhere -- somewhere random. I'm sure my car will end up somewhere one day."
Ramirez was clueless about the prank until he headed to the field with his teammates for infield practice.
"It definitely worked out well," Aviles said. "It was a nice, good parking spot. It was perfectly lined up at shortstop ... Everybody was laughing. It was pretty funny."
Indians manager Terry Francona only had one issue with the prank.
"He's driving a BMW? Times are changing," Francona said. "My eighth year, I had a 1971 VW bug that the heater was stuck on on. ... I used to put my foot out the door, out the window, coming in."
Francona was just happy that car made it to the players' lot each day.
He thought the prank on Ramirez was great.
"That was good," Francona said.