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MORNING BRIEFING

After Whirlwind Tour Ends, White's Agent Not So Popular

April 14, 1993|TIM KAWAKAMI

Hey, Reggie White, you've just completed a whirlwind round of negotiations and landed the biggest contract ever given to a defensive player, $18 million-plus over four years, to sign with the Green Bay Packers. What are you going to do now?

He's going to Disney World. Actually, according to White's weary agent, Jimmy Sexton, the former Philadelphia Eagle is already in Orlando with his family, relaxing after taking bids from eight teams and visiting six cities during the last few weeks.

"It was wild, grueling, exciting . . . just incredible," Sexton says of tagging along on what some dubbed "The Reggie White victory tour."

"We had owners offering us things that were just crazy. And now that Reggie's signed, I probably couldn't get a phone call returned from most of them."

People's choice: Tom Callahan of the Washington Post, describing the reverence in Europe for Spaniard Seve Ballesteros:

"It isn't easy for an American golf fan to understand how precious Severiano Ballesteros is or was to the rest of the world--and whichever tense is appropriate might be the great question in the game today.

"Maybe it helps to say that, all over Europe, Ballesteros has played Arnold Palmer to Nick Faldo's Jack Nicklaus in the sense that God said to Faldo, as He once said to Nicklaus, 'You will have skills like no other,' then whispered to Ballesteros, as He once whispered to Palmer, 'but they will love you more.' "

Trivia time: What active player has gone the most at-bats without striking out against Nolan Ryan?

Bigger than Godzilla: Arnold Schwarzenegger endorses the top-selling brand of noodles in Japan. Recently, the No. 2 company signed Charles Barkley.

"Arnold's No. 1, so their rival company brought Chuck in to hammer him," Barkley said.

"It's true," said a member of a Japanese film crew that visited Phoenix recently to do a feature on Barkley. "As far as commercials (go), Charles is in the same league in Japan as Paul Newman."

Barkley nodded. "That's my next move," he said. "I'm going to have my own salad dressing."

Homer is where the heart is: Colorado Rockies' fans in left field already have begun showing their disdain for opponents' home runs--which may number in the hundreds this season--in an old-time manner. On all four Montreal homers last Sunday, they threw the ball back onto the playing field, adopting a practice made popular by Chicago Cubs' fans at Wrigley Field. On one homer just inside the foul pole, a fan held onto the ball before relenting in the face of loud and persistent booing and throwing it back.

Trivia answer: Fernando Valenzuela has hit 11 times against Ryan without striking out.

Quotebook: Coach Ron Smith, after his New York Rangers were eliminated from playoff contention Monday night with a 1-0 defeat against the Philadelphia Flyers: "It's a sick feeling, no matter how it happens. It kind of reflected the way the team has played all season, and when it happens in the 82nd game, you have to wonder."

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