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The Inside Track | MORNING BRIEFING

Umpires Not Only Ones Who Blow a Call

March 09, 2005|Larry Stewart | Times Staff Writer

Chuck Thompson, the legendary Baltimore announcer who died Sunday at 83, was truly an honest man.

While calling the 1960 World Series for NBC, he made an error that, he said in his 1996 autobiography, was "easily the most embarrassing moment of my career behind the microphone."

Bill Mazeroski of the Pittsburgh Pirates hit a home run off Ralph Terry of the New York Yankees in the bottom of the ninth inning of Game 7, giving his team a 10-9 Series-clinching victory. But Thompson, describing the play, said Mazeroski had hit the homer off Art Ditmar and that it made the final score 10-0.

When the Pirates produced a souvenir record of the Series, Thompson declined to correct the call.

"I figured it had gone on the air that way, so it wouldn't be honest to change it," he wrote.

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Trivia time: Jim Brown was an All-American in two sports at Syracuse. One, of course, was football. What was the other?

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Still hard to stop: Larry Csonka, an All-American running back at Syracuse in 1967 who went on to stardom with the Miami Dolphins, is involved in another sport these days, the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.

Csonka, 58, who now lives in Anchorage eight or nine months a year, sees similarities between football and sled-dog racing.

After reaching the 1,100-mile race's first checkpoint, he told Associated Press, "Whatever hits you in the face, you have to deal with and take it on the run."

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Another kind of show: Speaking of dogs, Carlee, the German shorthaired pointer who won last month's Westminster Kennel Club dog show, attended the Denver Nuggets' home game against Portland on Monday night.

Carlee's owners, Richard and Linda Stark, live in nearby Castle Rock and are Nugget season-ticket holders.

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Getting to the bottom of it: Reggie Jackson suffered minor injuries after his sport utility vehicle was rear-ended by another SUV on Friday night in Tampa, Fla., prompting reader Bill Littlejohn to ask, "Was Reggie's first thought, 'Find the straw that stirred his drinks?' "

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Almost covers it: Jay Leno, on the division winners of the L.A. Marathon each getting $25,000 and a new car: "Do you know what the 25 grand is for? Gas money!"

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Looking back: On this day in 1958, George Yardley, then playing for the Detroit Pistons, became the first NBA player to score 2,000 points in a season. Averaging 27.8 points a game, he finished with 2,001. Yardley, who died last August at 75, was a star at Newport Harbor High and Stanford.

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Trivia answer: Lacrosse.

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And finally: Dwight Perry of the Seattle Times, noting that in the first women's professional boxing match in California on April 28, 1976, at the Forum, Kim Maybee defeated Patricia Pineda, wrote: "Alert statisticians, eschewing the usual first-round knockout, instead entered the result in the 'Ring' record book as 'a definitive Maybee.' "

Larry Stewart can be reached at larry.stewart@latimes.com.

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