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The Inside Track | Morning Briefing

Here's a Switch: Cobb Is Taking a Licking Now

May 15, 2000|MAL FLORENCE

Stan Hochman of the Philadelphia Daily News on Ty Cobb being honored with a postage stamp last week--and it's not a stamp of approval:

"Wasn't he the bigot, the drunk, the womanizer? Wasn't he the guy who darted into the stands one day to beat up a crippled heckler who had no hands to fight back?

"Wasn't he the guy who slashed infielders with his spikes, the hall of famer so despised that when he died, only two big-leaguers came to his funeral?"

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Trivia time: Cobb had a major league career record batting average of .366. Who is second on the all-time list?

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Not cooling off: Tom FitzGerald in the San Francisco Chronicle: "So many runs are being scored at Denver's Coors Field, it's no wonder that two pitchers, the Mets' Mike Hampton and the Rockies' Masato Yoshii, blasted water coolers on successive days.

" 'Something has gotten destroyed pretty much every night since Coors opened,' Rockies Coach Rich Donnelly told ESPN.com."

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Did they respond? When Mike Sweeney of the Kansas City Royals was told the Russian national baseball team was in the stands at a recent game, he yelled up to them: "We need a lefty in the bullpen!"

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Opinion: Nick Canepa in the San Diego Union-Tribune: "The first great revelation of 2000: Bob Knight has a temper. I still wonder, though, if any of this ancient stuff about Knight would have surfaced if he still were winning NCAA championships. Seriously doubt it."

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An old Yogi-ism: Yogi Berra spent part of his 75th birthday christening a New York Waterway ferry named after him. The Hall of Fame catcher reportedly told the ship's pilot, "When you come to a fork in the river, take it."

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Impressed, to say the least: Bob Ryan in the Boston Globe: "The single most inexplicable and aberrational baseball act in my lifetime remains Tim Wakefield's 14-1 run five years ago.

"No knuckleball pitcher ever has, or ever will, do anything like that again, and I don't care if they play baseball for 5,000 years."

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FYI: Boston right-hander Pedro Martinez had a 5-0 record and 1.27 ERA in April. The last Red Sox pitcher to go 5-0 in April was left-hander Babe Ruth, who did it in 1917.

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Comedy caper: Blackie Sherrod in the Dallas Morning News: "Wish I'd Said That: Some Ky. Derby wag reported that The Deputy reverted to type. Ran like Barney Fife."

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Appropriate: Headline in the Seattle Times after the SuperSonics' May 5 exit from the playoffs: "Sinko de Sonics."

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Trivia answer: Rogers Hornsby, .358.

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And finally: Bernie Lincicome in the Chicago Tribune on Knight: "I say let him stay. Give him some props. Give him some rope. We've all come too far to be cheated out of a big finish."

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