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BASEBALL DAILY REPORT : ANGELS : Pregame Advice Pays Off for Snow

April 07, 1993|BOB NIGHTENGALE

Shortstop Gary DiSarcina took first baseman J.T. Snow aside before Tuesday's season opener and told him a story about his predecessor of a year ago.

He wanted to make sure Snow did not make the same mistake.

"I told him not to get caught up in all the pressure," DiSarcina said. "I told him what happened to Lee (Stevens). He got to the point where everything he did, he was comparing to Wally Joyner. Sooner or later, you can't even play.

"I said, 'Don't worry about what happened in spring training. Just be yourself. You don't have to prove anything to anybody.' "

Three hours later, Snow had his arm around DiSarcina, thanking him for the advice after his two-for-four performance that included his first home run.

"I think I became a lot more relaxed," Snow said. "I was excited and everything, but I can't say I was nervous."

Teammate Torey Lovullo also was taking credit for Snow's heroics. Lovullo had convinced Snow to start drinking carrot juice before games, and said it was no coincidence that Snow's first spring-training homer on Saturday came after a dose of the juice.

"It worked the first time," Snow said. "But I didn't have the heart to tell Torey I didn't have any today. I forgot."

*

Manager Buck Rodgers has toyed with the idea before, but it was during Saturday's spring training game against the Dodgers that he decided it was time for action.

Tuesday, Rodgers moved the Angels' bullpen from right field to left field for the first time since the stadium was enclosed, allowing Rodgers full view of the visitor's bullpen.

"When I couldn't see whether (Dodger Manager) Tom Lasorda had a left-hander warming up in the bullpen," Rodgers said, "I said, 'What the . . .?' I don't want to watch my own pitchers warm up."

*

The Angels, feeling the wrath of the fans and the economy, finished their ticket campaign by selling only 13,258 season tickets.

It's a 14.1% drop-off from last year's total of 15,491, and their lowest season-ticket base since 1979.

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