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Names And Numbers

August 01, 1993

* CUTBACK: The Major League Scouting Bureau, with headquarters in El Toro, has been hit by baseball's economy wave. The bureau, in its 19th year as a supplement to the scouting staffs of each club, is cutting almost 50% of its full-time staff of about 55 scouts.

Each club contributes about $125,000 to the bureau. The savings from this owner-mandated action is expected to be modest, but typically hits hardest those people who put in some of the longest hours, do the most legwork, are vital to the developmental process and receive the least pay.

* PAYOFF: The Atlanta Braves won eight of their first nine games after acquiring Fred McGriff, matching their entire April total of 84 runs scored in that span. McGriff hit six homers and drove in 10 runs in the nine games. The Braves collected 14 hits in four of the games, 18 in two others and 21 in another. Their previous season high was 14.

* ADD BRAVES: Atlanta is trying to catch the San Francisco Giants in the National League West with a recently remodeled bullpen. It includes three pitchers who did not throw one pitch in the major leagues last year--Greg McMichael, Pedro Borbon and a rebounding Steve Bedrosian.

* GETTING A CHANCE: Playing regularly for the Colorado Rockies in right field, former Angel Dante Bichette has set an expansion record for doubles during a major offensive season.

Bichette had a .310 average, 14 homers and 62 runs batted in through Friday. His 32 doubles led the National League and were two more than the expansion record of 30, set by Danny O'Connell of the Washington Senators in 1961.

With an injured Andres (Big Cat) Galarraga missing from the Colorado lineup, the offensive load, such as it is, falls on Bichette, who said, "There's not much you can do to replace a .390 hitter. Cat is our Barry Bonds."

* PAYING HIS WAY: Ken Griffey's bid to stretch his home run streak to a record nine consecutive games Thursday night resulted in a record of another kind. His Seattle Mariners sold a club-record 30,220 tickets on the day of the game for a total of 45,607.

In tying the record of eight, set by Dale Long and previously tied by Don Mattingly, and pushing his season total to 30, Griffey failed to convince himself that he's a home run hitter.

"I won't believe that until I hit 50," he said.

Manager Lou Piniella, who was at the New York Yankees' helm when Mattingly tied Long, said: "Junior's bigger, stronger and has more home run power (than Mattingly)."

* ONE FOR THE AGES: In the high heat and humidity of New York Thursday afternoon, Charlie Hough, 45, pitched the Florida Marlins to a 2-1 victory over the Mets and Frank Tanana, 40, who took the loss but was two for two at the plate and even attempted to steal a base, in vain.

"We had two senior pitchers today," Met pitcher Mike Maddux said. "Which one is older? It was hard to tell, but the only thing missing was those turn-back-the-clock uniforms."

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