March 6, 2014 at 11:09 am

Tom Gage

Tigers manager Brad Ausmus turned down Princeton - and Harvard

Brad Ausmus ended up at Dartmouth. (Robin Buckson / Detroit News)

Gage’s 140 (words, not characters):

Lakeland, Fla. — It’s a question I don’t think I asked Brad Ausmus when he played for the Tigers.

And one I know I hadn’t asked him as a manager. But as the discussion in his Thursday morning media session turned to the circumstances of him signing his first contract, I asked, “If you hadn’t gone to Dartmouth, where would you have gone?”

“Harvard or Princeton,” he replied.

Ausmus was accepted at both.

We all know he’s smart, of course, but the school he went to, along with the schools he turned down, make him an official “brainiac.”

That is former Tigers manager Jim Leyland’s word for a book-smart player — or, for that matter, a book-smart anybody.

“Must be a brainiac,” Leyland would say.

In this case, Jim, you’d be right. A manager who turned down Harvard? Aren’t too many of ‘em.

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