The lockers of baseball players are private sanctuaries and sometimes a bit strange. Seattle third baseman Mike Blowers recalls the unusual locker of Tony Welborn, a teammate in double A five years ago at Jacksonville, Fla.
“He used to have (toy) army men in his locker and the day he would pitch, he’d come in early to the ballpark and he’d set his army men up and play war games in his locker,” Blowers told the Miami Herald. “He’d put on a helmet and have his little tank and gun out, blowing things up. That was about as weird as I’ve ever seen.”
Trivia time: Who holds the NFL record for most interceptions in a season?
Stop it: From Bruce Keidan of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: “Please, not another word about the Heisman Trophy before Thanksgiving at the earliest. Until a lineman or a defensive back wins one, it remains the most over-hyped and overrated award in sports.”
Priorities: Diamond Hill High School of Ft. Worth forfeited a football game last Friday with Glen Rose High because more than half the team left school to throw a bachelor party for quarterback Javier Rodriguez before his wedding.
About 17 players apparently left school to help Rodriguez celebrate. The exodus left only 13 players to take on Glen Rose.
When asked what he and his team would do with the forfeit victory and no game to play, Glen Rose Coach Joe Crouch said: “I don’t know. We weren’t invited to the wedding.”
FYI: There are 40 married players on the Brigham Young football team, including nine defensive starters and the entire offensive line. And family life seems to suit BYU. The Cougars are 4-0.
Holding on: Austrian tennis player Alex Antonitsch won a five-set Davis Cup match over New Zealander Kelly Evernden on Sunday in Christchurch, New Zealand, but only after he’d had a moment of crisis.
He accused officials of locking the toilet door when he dashed from the court for relief during the second set. The match was delayed for 10 minutes while he waited for someone with a key.
Wisdom from the boss: Yankee owner George Steinbrenner told Patrick Reusse of the Star Tribune of Minneapolis his philosophy on criticism from the New York media:
“I remember something my father told me. He said, ‘Remember, the most perishable item on the back porch is not the milk and not the eggs. Those things will last three days.’
“ ‘The most perishable item is the newspaper. What’s a big story today is gone tomorrow.’ ”
Shay it again: Another Kinerism from the inimitable Met broadcaster Ralph Kiner, as collected by Jayson Stark of the Philadelphia Inquirer:
“And this: the Mets will be returning to Stay Sheadium . . . “
Trivia answer: Dick (Night Train) Lane of the Rams, with 14 in 1952.
Quotebook: California football Coach Keith Gilbertson, when asked about questionable officiating: “If you say anything about it in this league, they take you to Benihana and cut your fingers off.”