BOSTON -- Former teammates and current friends are facing off during the three-game series between the Red Sox and Padres this week.
Red Sox manager John Farrell and Padres manager Bud Black played together on the 1988 Cleveland Indians and have maintained a relationship to this day. They chatted for about 10 minutes during batting practice before Tuesday's game.
"He's always been someone that I've learned a lot from as a teammate with and he's been willing to share some of his experiences, so, yeah, we've maintained a pretty close relationship," Farrell said.
The two skippers also share the distinction of being the only two current managers who were Major League pitchers.
When Farrell was preparing to jump from pitching coach of the Red Sox to manager of the Blue Jays, he turned to Black, who's managed San Diego since the 2007 season, for advice.
"There was a number of personnel-type discussions on construction of a staff and those types of things," Farrell said. "But even as a teammate there was always a perspective on his part that he always had a way to kind of slow the game down through our conversations, and I learned a lot for him. So whether it was in the same uniform or going to a similar role, it's a trusted perspective on his part."
Black said their pitching background gives them a similar managing perspective.
"I think there's probably a similar position bond that we have and how we view our managerial situations," Black said. "But I think at the end of the day, even going back to when we played together and our relationship personally, he's a good baseball man. He knows baseball. He's got a great baseball mind. He thinks like a player and that can combine both pitching and position player."
Farrell and Black are just two of the five current Major League managers who have roots from the 1988 Indians.
Farrell, Black, Indians manager Terry Francona and Rangers manager Ron Washington were players on the team, and Phillies skipper Charlie Manuel was the hitting coach.
"It just happened," Black said. "If you were to look at that group you wouldn't have predicted that. But each one of those four guys all have the attributes to lead."
Michael Periatt is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @Michael Periatt. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.