Tom Lasorda says he doesn’t know who...
Tom Lasorda says he doesn’t know who will start for the Dodgers at shortstop tonight against the Phillies. Well, I’ve got a suggestion. Jose Offerman. Give him the job and let him keep it for the next 15 or 20 years. . . .
The Dodger plan is to spoon-feed Offerman the rest of the season after calling him up from Albuquerque, where he was rated the best prospect in the minor leagues. He’s supposed to learn mostly by observing his elders. They don’t want to put too much pressure on a 21-year-old kid. But after what happened Sunday at Dodger Stadium, the plan should be junked. . . .
Now’s not the time for a team that is 6 1/2 games out of first place to be conservative, it’s the time to be bold. . . .
Alfredo Griffin is a nice fellow who has had a fine career, but he’s hitting .224 and has committed 24 errors. He’s hit one home run--a total Offerman equaled in his first at-bat in the major leagues. . . .
“What tools,” drooled Al Campanis after Offerman went three for five and stole a base against Montreal. “You know what people are going to forget about? That running catch he made with his back to the plate. He looked like a wide receiver.”. . . .
Offerman was considered a valuable property as long as three years ago when he was an 18-year-old playing for the Dodger academy team in the Dominican rookie summer league. Fred Claire refused to include Offerman in a trade that would have sent him and a veteran Dodger to Toronto for outfielder Jesse Barfield. . . .
Offerman hadn’t hit a home run this season at Albuquerque, but sometimes the darndest things happen in a first at-bat. In 1952, pitcher Hoyt Wilhelm hit a homer the first time up for the New York Giants. He never hit another in a major league career that lasted 21 years and landed him in the Hall of Fame.
Can it possibly be eight years since Steve Garvey played for the Dodgers? Indeed, he signed as a free agent with San Diego following the 1982 season. But he remains a crowd favorite at Dodger Stadium, where he received a standing ovation after being introduced as the centennial celebrity Friday night. . . .
If the Raiders are going to make a trade for a quarterback--and they should--this could be the week. Only two more exhibition games are left for a new passer to learn their system before the Sept. 9 opener against Denver. . . .
Bobby Hebert has been mentioned in trade rumors, but how about sending Steve Beuerlein and a first-round draft choice to Dallas for Steve Walsh?. . . .
Walsh, who won’t beat out Troy Aikman for the Cowboy job, outperformed Jay Schroeder in the first half Saturday at the Coliseum without the benefit of the quality receivers Schroeder has at his disposal. . . .
Howie Long on the “crowd” for the Raider-Dallas game: “It was a real downer. What a culture shock for Anthony Smith. He’s used to playing in front of big crowds at Alabama and Arizona. I said to him, ‘Hey, this is the big time. The NFL.’ He couldn’t believe it.”. . . . The clock at the Coliseum was in midseason form for the first game of the year--the bottom half of the numbers didn’t work. . . .
The difference in quickness between Ram tailback candidates Gaston Green and Curt Warner during the Rams’ loss to San Diego at Anaheim Stadium Saturday night was enormous. . . .
Sign hanging on the second deck: “Georgia sign the checks!” above pictures of the No. 91 and 78 jerseys of Ram holdouts Kevin Greene and Jackie Slater.
The Clippers could have scored a public relations coup--and gotten some veteran leadership--by claiming Michael Cooper on waivers from the Lakers. . . .
If Junior Seau was so anxious to leave USC early, how come he’s so slow to sign a contract with the Chargers?. . . .
Razor Ruddock can whack, as he showed knocking out Kimmuel Odum in the third round Sunday, but got hit too many times by a journeyman. And maybe Razor should have been disqualified for decking Odum with a punch long after the bell at the end of the second round. Ruddock also came in overweight, a malady common to heavyweight contenders in recent years . . .
I’m not sure that CBS did Ruddock any favors by showing his fight after a retrospective on Muhammad Ali’s career. . . .
Juan Coggi of Argentina was offered $275,000 to defend his World Boxing Assn. junior welterweight title against Loreto Garza in Garza’s hometown of Sacramento. Coggi should have taken it. Instead, he got paid only $200,000 to fight Garza Friday in Nice, France--and lost his title on a majority decision.
Iran Barkley, who takes too many punches, should hang ‘em up. . . .
CBS commentator Gary McCord, who was a schoolmate of comedian Steve Martin at Garden Grove High, provides golf telecasts with the humor they so often lack. . . .
Bob Welch, the A’s 20-game winner, would have had a chance for 30 in the days of the four-man starting rotation. When Denny McLain won 31 in 1968, he started 41 games. Welch is on a pace to start only 34. . . .
Vin Scully in the fourth inning Sunday: “The Jose Offerman video, ‘How to Play Baseball,’ is available everywhere.”