|ESPN.com: Baseball||[Print without images]|
MINNEAPOLIS -- Twins manager Ron Gardenhire will miss Minnesota's games on Friday and Saturday against the Royals to attend Saturday's funeral of Michael Hirschbeck in Ohio.
Hirschbeck, the son of umpire John Hirschbeck, died Tuesday at age 27. He had battled adrenoleukodystrophy, a disease that affects the brain and nervous system.
"There's a place in Gardy's heart for him," acting manager Terry Steinbach said. "He was going to try and do everything he could to get there."
Once while the younger Hirschbeck was in Minneapolis for medical tests at the University of Minnesota, former Twins manager Tom Kelly invited him to be the team's batboy for a game. It was the beginning of a relationship between Michael and the Twins that continued when Gardenhire became manager.