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This Song Can Make Him Cry

The season is only two weeks old, but Pittsburgh Pirates’ Manager Jim Leyland already has a new story for the winter banquet circuit.

The Pirates were standing around the dugout in Three Rivers Stadium before a game earlier this season while music blared from the loudspeakers.

Leyland: “One of my players, and I’m not saying who, said, ‘I wish they wouldn’t play that song.’ I asked why. He said, ‘Because every time they play it, I have a bad day.’ ”

The song was the National Anthem.

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For What It’s Worth: When Elgin Baylor scored 61 points against the Boston Celtics in 1962 to set the record which Michael Jordan broke Sunday, the Lakers won the game, 126-121, at Boston Garden.

Baylor made 22 of 46 shots from the floor and 17 of 19 from the line. He also had 22 rebounds.

The win gave the Lakers a 3-2 edge in the series and Coach Fred Schaus said, “We’ll win it now. We’ve got ‘em back home now.”

Forget it. The Celtics won the next one, 119-105, to take the series back to Boston. They won the decider, 110-107, in overtime after Frank Selvy missed the jumper that would have won for the Lakers in regulation.

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Trivia Time: Wally Post is the answer to what trivia question? (Answer below.)

Bill Conlin, writing in The Sporting News, said he was all set to root for Cincinnati until owner Marge Schott, an automobile dealer, started bouncing longtime employees and had a picture and a biography of her dog Schottzie placed in the team’s media guide.

Conlin: “She has become a low-rent George Steinbrenner, a penny-pinching hatchetwoman who even stooped so low as to fire Riverfront Stadium’s longtime organist.”

He added: “Schott’s excellent baseball people have built a dynamite young team for her. But the rest of her operation has become a cheap transportation special--plastic seat covers, no radio or heater and optional battery.”

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Would-you-believe-it dept.: According to “The 1986 Elias Baseball Analyst,” when the season started, the Dodgers had a 41-49 record in Fernando Valenzuela’s last 90 starts. After three starts in 1986, the record is 42-51.

LSU Athletic Director Bob Brodhead, on basketball Coach Dale Brown: “Dale is not your typical coach. How many coaches can read a book on the theory of relativity in two or three hours one night and quote extensively from it to reporters the next day? Dale can and he often does.”

Add Brown: The Sporting News said: “Brown intends to recruit a big foreigner and conduct a series of clinics in Turkey this summer. While overseas, Brown is expected to join an expedition to try to locate the remains of Noah’s ark.”

They’re hoping to get an expansion NBA team in Minneapolis, and the St. Paul Pioneer Press asked Kevin McHale, a native of Hibbing, Minn., if he would be interested in going to the club.

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McHale: “I’ll go if Larry Bird goes.”

Trivia Answer: He hit the first homer in Dodger Stadium history. In the 1962 opener, his three-run shot off Johnny Podres in the seventh inning helped Cincinnati win the game, 6-3.

Quotebook

Toronto Blue Jays’ publicist Howie Starkman, confirming that catcher Buck Martinez uses a bat manufactured in Canada: “We have wood up here, too.”

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