Green got the heave-ho when barking about a balk call that was reversed twice, finishing in the Pirates' favor, during the third inning. With Green spending the rest of the game pacing in his office, McGwire, the bench coach, took over.
In his first regular-season game as acting manager, McGwire got the win -- thanks in part to home runs by Wil Myers, Derek Norris and Adam Rosales.
"It's not the way you want to get it, but I sort of had a feeling that once they switched the call that Andy was going to be upset," McGwire said.
So McGwire huddled with pitching coach Darren Balsley, and they navigated the game that gave the Padres their second home win of the year.
"They did a great job," Green said. "They worked through it very, very well."
The Padres seemed to get a lift when Green was done tossing his cap and storming about. McGwire said a manager backing his players doesn't go unnoticed and can fire them up.
"Oh yeah, absolutely it can always do that," said McGwire, who's in his first year as a bench coach after previously serving as Dodgers hitting coach. "But the guys were ready to play today. We were ready."
Even if McGwire didn't know he would end up calling the game from the top step.