Somebody brought a sea gull with him to the Raiders-Seattle Seahawks game Monday night and turned him loose in the Kingdome. That wasn't the brightest thing to do, and it could lead to cruelty-to-animal charges, except the bird has fallen in love with his new home, and now they can't get rid of him.
"He's found what a bonanza the leftovers are," Kingdome spokeswoman Carol Keaton said. "He's got all the leftover peanuts and popcorn he can eat.
"He's got a clean stadium all to himself and is out of the cold and rain. He's the warmest, driest sea gull anywhere. He's in sea gull heaven."
Lou Piniella, asked how much autonomy he'll have as general manager of the New York Yankees, told Marty Noble of Newsday: "I can make a trade myself. I can pick up the phone, call back a general manager and say, 'Yes, we'll do it.' I wouldn't have to check it with Mr. Steinbrenner . . . but I would."
Add Steinbrenner: Here's what he had to say when Piniella was a player: "Lou Piniella is like a child who tests you with how many times he can go to the cookie jar. The type of individual he is, once in a while he has to be belted good."
Trivia Time: Name the only two coaches to win 100 games in their first 10 National Football League seasons. (Answer below.)
Ouch: Veteran baseball writer Earl Lawson, in his new book, "Cincinnati Seasons," calls Rogers Hornsby the greatest right-handed hitter of all time but adds: "He was the worst manager the Reds had during the 34 years I covered the club."
He adds: "Hornsby was one of the most prejudiced, uncouth, thoughtless individuals I've ever met."
Said Philadelphia Eagles Coach Buddy Ryan, when asked where Paul McFadden would be if he had missed the 38-yard field goal that beat the New England Patriots last Sunday: "On the unemployment line."
Would-you-believe-it Dept.: The Raiders, announcing that Gene Upshaw will receive his Pro Football Hall of Fame ring in a special ceremony at the Coliseum Sunday, put out a six-paragraph release in which Upshaw's career is reviewed.
Nowhere in the release is it mentioned that Upshaw is the executive director of the NFL Players Assn.
Trivia Answer: Don Shula and John Madden. Shula, with Baltimore and Miami, was 112-35-5 in his first 10 seasons. Madden, with Oakland, was 112-39-7.
USC football Coach Larry Smith, on being named Pacific 10 coach of the year: "I think it's a nice honor, but my wife keeps me humble. She pointed out to me that it took me eight years to win it, and there are only 10 teams in the conference."