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Morning Briefing

Sparky's Only 53 but Is Counting

October 11, 1987

With 98 wins in the regular season, Detroit Manager Sparky Anderson moved ahead of Fred Clarke into 11th place among baseball's winningest managers.

His goal is to pass John McGraw for second place. He needs 1,229 wins to catch McGraw, who had 2,840.

"If I stay healthy, I'll pass him," Anderson said, guessing it would take him 15 years. "I'm only 53. McGraw's the only one I want."

Connie Mack holds the record with 3,776 wins.

"Mack don't count," Anderson said. "He owned the ballclub and stayed there forever."

Mack retired in 1950 at the age of 88. He didn't look a day older than Sparky.

Jack Clark wasn't too happy when he tried to take batting practice last week at Busch Stadium and found the field taken over by the football Cardinals.

"We're fighting for the pennant, and the scabs are taking up my time," he said. "If I see them again, I'm going to hit a line drive off their butts and see if they can catch them. They ought send the scabs back to Yugoslavia or wherever they came from."

Cincinnati Bengals' Coach Sam Wyche blew his top when quarterback Boomer Esiason called off a practice by the striking players because there weren't any footballs.

"You're making a million bucks a year, man," Wyche shouted. "Break down, buy a football."

Add Forgettable Quotes: "We will not break the record," Coach Larry McElreavy of Columbia promised before the season, which started with the Lions working on a 31-game losing streak.

The record fell Saturday when Princeton routed the Lions, 38-8. It was Columbia's 35th straight loss, breaking Northwestern's record of 34.

Princeton was led by Jason, Judd and John Garrett, sons of former Columbia Coach Jim Garrett. They've been the stars this year, but the most envied member of the team is safety Dean Cain.

He dates Princeton grad Brooke Shields.

From Nelson Townsend, who moved from Florida A&M to become athletic director at the State University of New York because the Florida weather was not good for his 12-year-old daughter's asthma: "I'm probably the first person I know who has moved to Buffalo because of the climate."

Wait a Minute: Said Detroit's Pat Sheridan after his game-winning homer Saturday: "I've never done this before. I must have had a pretty mediocre career."

Not exactly. Playing for Kansas City in the 1985 playoffs, he hit two home runs, including one which helped the Royals win the seventh and deciding game against Toronto.

Would-you-believe-it Dept.: When a reporter asked Detroit pitcher Doyle Alexander the name of his son, Alexander said, "That's private."

Said Detroit coach Alex Grammas when asked what he knew about Alexander: "I don't know. I never heard him talk."


St. Louis pitcher Joe Magrane, on the distance between his hometown of Grayson, Ky., and Morehead, Ky.: "It's an hour away by '57 Chevy, 30 minutes by foot."

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