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Baseball Miscellany : Names And Numbers

June 25, 1989|ROSS NEWHAN

Who's Left?: Len Dykstra, Juan Samuel and Rickey Henderson, all leadoff-hitting center fielders, were traded this week. Willie McGee went back on the St. Louis Cardinals disabled list. Where does this leave the Dodgers? Well, there's still Joe Carter of the Cleveland Indians, Lloyd Moseby of the Toronto Blue Jays and Dan Gladden of the Minnesota Twins. The gritty Gladden is basically a left fielder, but he has played center, and, except for stolen bases where Henderson had a 25-13 edge, his 1989 statistics through Thursday were superior to those of his more renowned peer--.278 to .246 in batting average and 26 to 22 in runs batted in.

Gladden II: The Twins, who need pitching, also represent a match for the Dodgers, who have a surplus of it. The list of pitching retreads employed by the Twins in the last two years includes Steve Carlton, Joe Niekro, Mike Mason, Dan Schatzader, Mark Portugal, Karl Best, Charlie Lea, Tippy Martinez, Les Straker, Jim Winn, Lee Tunnell, Randy St. Claire, Fred Tolliver, Mike Cook, Francisco Olivares and Steve Shields.

Bad Rap: Fenway Park, because of the proximity of the left-field wall, has long been known as a graveyard for left-handed pitchers, but the Boston Red Sox are 1-8 against left-handed starters there this year.

Feeling at Home: How successful has Roger Craig been in getting the San Francisco Giants to accept the fog, wind and cold of Candlestick Park, to quit complaining and use it to their advantage? The Giants have the best home record in baseball at 26-12 and their pitchers have a 1.87 earned-run average there this year.

Vulture: Kansas City rookie Tom (Flash) Gordon had nine wins and was tied with Greg Swindell and Jeff Ballard for the American League lead through Thursday. Gordon had done it by blowing five of six save opportunities, then gaining the win in four of those five blown saves.

New Low: Royals' first baseman George Brett, who normally comes off the disabled list with a sizzling bat, was 6 for 41 in his first 10 games after recovering from his latest knee injury and was batting .226 overall through Thursday. Said Brett: "In the 16 years I've been in the big leagues, this is about as tough a time as I've had, as big a rut as I've been in, as frustrated as I've ever felt."

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