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Possibilities Nearly Limitless Once One Acquires the Bug

What bugs me? I’ll tell you what bugs me:

--Baseball players who earn $400,000 a year and have to be told not to order pizza and not to watch “Wheel of Fortune” in the clubhouse during games . Now you know why baseball teams hire managers.

--Steve Garvey gets thrown out of a ballgame for quietly telling the umpire, “We’ve got to bear down here.” Garvey forgot to say, “Your lordship.”

--Larry Holmes takes a prefight physical that goes like this:

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“How are you?”

“Fine.”

“OK, you can go.”

He didn’t even have to cough.

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At least Holmes gets a prefight physical. Nobody ever makes him take a prefight mental.

--The Soviets are already practicing for the 1988 Olympics. They back out of a track meet in San Jose. A U.S. track spokesman, Pete Cava, says: “I’m surprised. This is the first time I’ve ever seen anything like this from the Russians.”

Earth to Pete. Earth to Pete.

--The world’s best men’s tennis players continue to exhibit behavior that would get them bounced from a fraternity beer party. Their punishment? Tiny fines and paid vacations.

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--In El Centro, the Little League baseball season is called off after a ball rolls into weeds, the umpire calls it a ground-rule double, and a fan threatens the umpire with a knife. What ever happened to the good old days when Little League disputes between fans and umps were settled with fists?

--If the Cubs win the National League championship, they will play their home games in the cozy confines of Busch Stadium in St. Louis, by decree of Peter Ueberroth, who evidently couldn’t find an available stadium in Hermosillo.

--A million-dollar race car comes in second for want of a nickel’s worth of fuel.

--The St. Louis Cardinals are sending their World Series rings back to the manufacturer because the stones are falling out. That’s the ’85 World Series rings, not the ’24 Series rings. A diamond is forever or until spring training, whichever comes first.

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--Newspapers print stories about things that didn’t happen (Irving Fryar’s alleged gambling) and don’t print stories about things that did happen (Patriots’ snorting).

--We should know about a week before the start of the 1988 Olympics whether enough teams will show up to fill all the lanes on the track.

--Professional athletes who earn a million dollars, not counting shoe contracts, sell their autographs. Photographs, old shoes, locks of hair, toenail clippings--fine, great. But please don’t sell autographs.

--The Nevada Las Vegas football team. Record over the last four seasons: 18 forfeits, including a bowl game and a conference championship. Nine players arrested over the last few months. This team is giving the whole city a bad name.

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--Frank Gifford will be the color commentator on “Monday Night Football.”

--A young woman, a superb athlete and possibly a victim of the System, throws herself off a bridge.

--Nothing is real. A Federal Drug Administration official says that 80-100% of all power lifters and body builders use steroids. It used to be pumping iron. Now it’s pumping pig pancreas.

--Any court case involving any two sports organizations. Call me when it’s over.

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--Desperate, short-term executives on NBA teams trade away high draft choices, selling out the team’s future and the loyal fans’ hopes for a few ticket sales. And owners with rice pudding for brains give their stamps of approval.

--Leon Spinks, age 32, has blown the $4.5 million he earned in boxing. Now he has to go out and get another job that pays as well. How about color commentator on “Monday Night Football?”

--The World Cup. Wouldn’t it be safer just to have a war? There are only three things that will incite Mexico City soccer fans to riot in the streets--win, lose or tie.

--Rod Carew quits baseball after two glorious decades and says, “For the first time in years, I’m having fun.” He’s probably kicking himself for not quitting 15 years ago.

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--The NBA draft lottery. If it isn’t rigged, it should be.

--Cheaters are regularly detected in marathons and in bass fishing tournaments.

--Schottzie. The pet St. Bernard of Cincinnati Reds’ owner Marge Schott has a mug shot and bio in the team press guide, has appeared on national TV, wears a baseball cap, and has her own air conditioned office at the ballpark. Enough.


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