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Morning Briefing

The Script Calls for Whines

July 17, 1985

Last week, Sparky Anderson was saying you can't win as an All-Star manager because you have only so many spots on the roster and you can't pick everyone who is deserving.

"After you don't pick a guy, then he beats you (when the season resumes)," Anderson said. "I can write the script of what he's going to say. He's going to say how he did it because he deserved to be on the All-Star team.

"That's like every time Ernie Whitt does well against us, he brings up how Bill Lajoie didn't like him when he scouted him."

Whitt is a catcher for the Toronto Blue Jays. Lajoie is the general manager of the Detroit Tigers.

Anderson, incidentally, didn't make Lajoie's mistake. He selected Whitt for Tuesday night's game.

Boston pitcher Dennis (Oil Can) Boyd, who wasn't selected, said after recording his 11th win Sunday: "I wish Sparky Anderson was watching. I wanted to make the All-Star game more than anything else in the world. Some people are in trouble."

Add Sparky: The Tigers are 3 1/2 games behind the Blue Jays in the American League East, but he likes their chances. He told Michael Wilbon of the Washington Post:

"The only time I was worried was last month when we fell 8 1/2 back, with two more games in Toronto that weekend. If we'd lost those two, we were gone. It would take three months to make up that deficit.

"We were in the desert that day, in the Sahara. But we won two, and they let us back into Palm Springs. Now we're in a condominium in Palm Springs, just relaxing. And waiting."

The first man to get a hit in the Metrodome? Nobody asked, but Pete Rose had the answer, anyway.

"I had the first hit in this park," Rose told reporters before the All-Star game. "Pete Redfern was pitching for the Twins, and I was with the Phillies in an exhibition game.

"I was batting second behind Ivan DeJesus, and I was hoping he wouldn't get a hit. He walked, and then I hit a shot up the middle."

Add Rose: As he moves in on Ty Cobb's record, Wheaties is putting Rose on their boxes, temporarily replacing Mary Lou Retton.

A Wheaties executive said Rose had to sign an affidavit stating he eats Wheaties.

Does he?

"Sure," he said. "Ever since I was a kid."

Trivia Time: On this date in 1941, the Cleveland Indians stopped Joe DiMaggio's hitting streak at 56 games. Who were the Cleveland pitchers? (Answer below.)

Wait a Minute: Reggie Jackson, 39, was quoted as saying: "I'm beating the odds if I can just play. They tell me when Babe Ruth was my age, he was like 60."

In 1934, when he was 39, Ruth batted .288 with 22 homers and 84 RBIs in 125 games.

Fred Lynn, after batting .271 with 23 homers and 79 RBIs in 142 games for the Angels last year, was signed by Baltimore for more than $1 million a year. He's 33.

Pedro Guerrero isn't the only one to go on a slugging spree after escaping from the hot corner.

Atlanta's Bob Horner, after moving from third base to first base, has batted .318 with 10 home runs and 31 RBIs in 30 games.

Trivia Answer: Al Smith and Jim Bagby.

Note: DiMaggio hit .406 during the streak. In the same period, Boston's Ted Williams hit .412. Williams wound up the season hitting .406, DiMaggio .357.


Reggie Jackson, saying it can help a hitter to go up to the plate as if he owned the pitcher: "I might go into the act even if I don't hit that pitcher too well. Hey, maybe he doesn't remember."

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