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Notes on a Scorecard

If soccer is boring to many Americans, what do you think baseball is to most of the rest of the world? . . .

Put the World Series on television all over Europe, and the ratings would be lower than they are for the World Cup in the United States. The rules of the game would be baffling. Soccer is pretty easy to understand. But just try explaining baseball to someone who has never seen it. . . .

Regarding baseball, World Cup fans probably would agree with Beano Cook, who, after the hostages returned from Iran in 1981 and were awarded baseball season tickets, said, “Haven’t they suffered enough?” . . .

I imagine Chicago White Sox Manager Jeff Torborg has ordered the tape of Oakland Athletic pitcher Dave Stewart’s remarks about his team for showing the next time they play. . . .

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What do Angel batters have against pitcher Mark Langston? . . .

On TBS the other night, Don Sutton said he didn’t think Bill Russell would succeed Tom Lasorda as Dodger manager. Something about Russell not having the personality to fill the role. Skip Caray then asked Sutton if Mel Brooks would be the logical choice. . . .

White Sox reliever Bobby Thigpen, not San Francisco Giant first baseman Will Clark, is having the best year of any Mississippi State product. . . .

Watching “Baseball Tonight” at 8 p.m. on ESPN kind of takes the suspense out of the baseball scores and highlights on “SportsCenter” at 8:30. . . .

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The New York Yankees, who are battling Atlanta for the distinction this year, haven’t had the worst record in the major leagues since 1912. . . .

Ryne Sandberg is at a pace to break the National League home run record for second basemen set by Davey Johnson with 43 in 1973. . . .

Thumbs up to Chicago Cubs management for not blaming its woes on Manager Don Zimmer and, instead, giving him a contract extension. . . .

For a young strikeout pitcher, Ramon Martinez doesn’t walk many people. In fact, he didn’t walk any Braves Monday night in Atlanta. . . .

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Former St. Louis Browns third baseman Bob Dillinger gave the Browns’ T-ball league team in Glendale a pep talk before a game recently. Then they went out and, as was the Browns’ custom, lost. . . .

KLAC sports-talk show host Gabe Kaplan, after watching Nelson Mandela wear a Yankee jacket and hat and declare himself a Yankee: “He’s not a Yankee anymore. George Steinbrenner fired him.” . . .

Recommended reading: The Show, a new baseball magazine that is being published four times a season. A portion of the proceeds go to the Major League Baseball Players Alumni Assn. . . .

They would never understand this in the NBA, but the top two clubs in the American League West, Oakland and Chicago, have better records on the road than at home. . . .

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Another example of the lack of quality pitching in the majors is the Pittsburgh Pirates ending their season-long search for a pitcher by acquiring the fabled Jay Tibbs from the Baltimore Orioles. . . .

The USC men’s track and field program couldn’t receive a bigger lift than to have Jim Bush become head coach. . . .

Most boxing prospects are spoon-fed, but light-heavyweight Andrew Maynard fought Bobby Czyz before he was ready. . . .

If I turn on the TV and the sun is shining at Wimbledon, I think something is wrong with my set. . . .

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John McEnroe has had it. . . .

The doors to the Olympic Auditorium were reopened recently for filming of a movie on the life of rock star Jim Morrison. . . .

The Lakers got Kareem Abdul-Jabbar from the Milwaukee Bucks and the rights to draft Magic Johnson from the New Orleans Jazz cheaply enough, but I don’t think they’re going to be able to steal Akeem Olajuwon from the Houston Rockets. . . .

Give the edge to the Utah Jazz, which got high-scoring guard Jeff Malone, in that three-way trade that also involved the Washington Bullets and the Sacramento Kings. The Kings, as usual, got the worst of it. . . .

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The Clippers, who need a backup center, could do worse than take 7-foot Duane Causwell of Temple with their second pick in the first round today. . . .

After what Bo Kimble did to Gary Payton one-on-one Monday night, maybe Magic Johnson would be too big and strong for Michael Jordan in such a competition. . . .

From Vin Scully: “The Dodgers are such a .500 club that you get the idea they would split a three-game series if they could.”


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