The trial of Curtis Strong, the former clubhouse caterer for the Philadelphia Phillies, begins today with the possibility that several players could be called away from their teams during the pennant races this week to testify.
Strong, 38, faces 16 counts of cocaine distribution in a trial in which players are likely to be asked to detail under oath how extensive the cocaine problem is in major league baseball. In papers filed last Friday, U.S. Atty. J. Alan Johnson said nine current players and one former player might be called to testify. All received immunity from prosecution in return for their testimony before a federal grand jury.