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THE INSIDE TRACK | MORNING BRIEFING

Promotion More Like Takeaway Than Giveaway

June 09, 1997|MAL FLORENCE

It would have been one of sports' strangest promotions if it hadn't been canceled. The minor league Charleston (S.C.) Riverdogs had planned a free vasectomy Friday in honor of Father's Day.

However, negative feedback, including the Roman Catholic Diocese of Charleston, prompted officials to cancel the promotion.

And it shouldn't come as any surprise that the owner of the team, who was enthusiastic about V-day, is Mike Veeck, the mastermind of the Chicago White Sox's notorious Disco Demolition Night and whose dad, Bill Veeck, once sent a midget to bat in the majors.

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Trivia time: What was the result of the first NBA championship series in the 1946-47 season?

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Rare breed: Utah's Karl Malone discussing the Jazz's loss in Game 1 of the NBA final series: "You won't find me using escape goats."

Said Bernie Lincicome of the Chicago Tribune: "This is too bad because I certainly would like to see one of those up close, never mind the plural."

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Shaky statistic: In a letter to tennis fans in the June issue of Tennis magazine, associate publisher Rick Beispel wrote: "There are 84 million fans of professional tennis. That's 11,000,000 more fans than professional golf."

Did you conduct a phone survey, Rick?

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The bright side: Bill Conlin of the Philadelphia Daily News is impressed by the optimism of Phillie Manager Terry Francona:

"Captain Sunshine reminds me of the little kid whose nature was so upbeat that when he saw a huge mound of manure in the barn, he asked Santa for a saddle, assuming there was a pony under there."

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Smoldering reward: Former Montreal Canadien Steve Shutt on playing for Scotty Bowman, now the coach of the Detroit Red Wings: "You hated him for 364 days a year. And on the 365th you collected your Stanley Cup rings."

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Got it all: Cincinnati rookie pitcher Brett Tomko outlining his repertoire for reporters before his first major league start:

"I have a curveball that sometimes acts like a slider, sometimes acts like a curve, and sometimes acts like a batting-practice fastball."

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Boston bias: Dan Shaughnessy writing in the Boston Globe: "The Bulls are basketball's best team since the Celtics of the 1960s, worthy progeny of Red Auerbach, Bill Russell, and friends."

No mention of the Lakers of the 1980s.

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One-man relay: Doug Strange of the Montreal Expos on his inside-the-park home run last month: "I got to third base and I was looking for someone to hand the baton to."

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Looking back: On this day in 1906, the Boston Beaneaters ended their 19-game losing streak with a 6-3 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals.

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Trivia answer: The Philadelphia Warriors beat the Chicago Stags, four games to one.

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And finally: After the Cardinals lost seven consecutive games recently, St. Louis Manager Tony La Russa had eight headache pills arranged on his desk.

"Afternoon game," he said. "It's a long time till bedtime."

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