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THE INSIDE TRACK | NOTES ON A SCORECARD / ALLAN MALAMUD

It's Opportunity Time as Dodgers Resume Play

July 11, 1996|Allan Malamud

If they allow their bats to speak even louder than their words, the Dodgers could make a big statement about the National League West race in the next seven days. . . .

They play reeling San Francisco tonight through Sunday at Dodger Stadium, while San Diego plays the Rockies at the Colorado bomb site. . . .

Monday through Wednesday, the Dodgers play host to the Padres. . . .

The feeling is that Los Angeles eventually will leave the pack in the West, Houston will overcome St. Louis in the Central and Atlanta will win comfortably in the East. . . .

In the American League, look for Seattle to rally past Texas in the West, Cleveland to hold off Chicago in the Central and New York to maintain its lead in the East. . . .

Good thing for Mike Piazza that he didn't have to pose for a picture with Roberto Hernandez on Tuesday. . . .

The difference between Cal Ripken Jr. and Mike Tyson is that one of them plays hurt. . . .

Next year's All-Star game will be at Jacobs Field in Cleveland, so I guess it will be a sellout. . . .

Every time I hear Joe Morgan analyze baseball strategy, I think what a good manager he would make. . . .

Every time I hear Bob Costas offer solutions to baseball's problems, I think what a good commissioner he would make. . . .

In the year of the home run, it may be that the only individual power record broken will be that for doubles by the Seattle Mariners' Edgar Martinez. . . .

The standing ovation that brought tears to Ozzie Smith's eyes in the seventh inning before his final All-Star at-bat provided one of the great moments in sports this summer. . . .

The youngest All-Star, Seattle shortstop Alex Rodriguez, wore the biggest smile during the player introductions. . . .

The Detroit Tigers wouldn't mind unloading Cecil Fielder, who has another year at $7 million left on his contract. . . .

Just think how many homers Fielder would hit if he got to face Tiger pitching. . . .

Interleague play shouldn't hurt the appeal of the All-Star game one bit. In fact, most of the All-Star participants won't face one another in the regular season under next year's format. . . .

Maybe it is because he performs in the same town as Michael Jordan and Dennis Rodman, but Frank Thomas doesn't get nearly enough attention. . . .

*

Riddick Bowe weighed in at 252 pounds on Tuesday, meaning he must not be taking his bout against Andrew Golota tonight very seriously. . . .

It is the heaviest of Bowe's career and 12 pounds more than he weighed when he beat Evander Holyfield on Nov. 4. Bowe, who has become a seasonal fighter, hasn't boxed since then. . . .

I have mixed feelings about the Baltimore Ravens. It's awful that the franchise left Cleveland, but nice that Baltimore is back in the NFL and that Ted Marchibroda is the coach after getting the shaft from the Indianapolis Colts. . . .

The UCLA and USC football teams will play more games on the road than at home this season. But Oregon State, that perennial box office power, will play more home games. . . .

USC center David Crouse is a member of the Pacific 10 Conference men's basketball team that will play four exhibition games in Japan next month. Guards Tawana Grimes of UCLA and Erica Mashia of USC will play for the women's team in doubleheaders in Fukuoka, Hiroshima, Kobe and Fukui. . . .

Jim Harrick Jr. recently was named assistant coach at Valparaiso. . . .

Kobe Bryant might play in the Laker-Milwaukee Buck game in the Summer Pro League at the Long Beach Pyramid Friday at 2:30 p.m. Ray Allen is definite for the Bucks. . . .

Southern California is well represented at the Nike All-American camp at Indianapolis this week. . . .

Among those playing well are Chris Burgess of Irvine Woodbridge High, Schea Cotton of Bellflower St. John Bosco, Eric Chenowith of Villa Park, Baron Davis of Santa Monica Crossroads, Kenny Brunner of Compton Dominguez, Erron Maxey of Lake Elsinore, Kevin Augustine of Santa Ana Mater Dei and twins Jason and Jarron Collins of North Hollywood Harvard-Westlake. . . .

In this day and age, it figured that it would take nine pitchers to pitch a shutout Tuesday night at Philadelphia.

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