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Mattingly May Be Hanging Up His Spikes

From Staff and Wire Reports

Don Mattingly’s baseball career seems over--at least for now. The Associated Press reported Monday that a source who has been in contact with Mattingly’s advisors said the free-agent first baseman will issue a statement saying he won’t be playing at the start of next season.

Mattingly, who will be 35 on April 20, wants to see how he likes retirement. He hit .288 last season with only seven homers and 49 RBIs in 458 at-bats, getting a $4.02-million salary in the final season of a $19.3-million, five-year contract he agreed to in April 1990, about three months before severe back pain struck. He filed for free agency after the World Series.

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Angel pitcher Mark Langston and Toronto outfielder Devon White won their seventh Gold Glove awards and Seattle outfielder Ken Griffey Jr. won his sixth in succession. Angel first baseman J.T. Snow was the only first-time winner among the American League selections. Other winners: Toronto second baseman Roberto Alomar, Texas catcher Ivan Rodriguez, outfielder Kenny Lofton and shortstop Omar Vizquel of the Cleveland Indians, and New York Yankee third baseman Wade Boggs.

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Walt Weiss and the Colorado Rockies agreed to a $4.1-million, two-year contract with a player option for 1998. Weiss, 31, hit .260 for the Rockies last season, when he had a $1.6-million base as part of a $2.2-million, two-year deal.

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Kevin Kennedy, who led the Boston Red Sox to the American League East title in his first season as their manager, accepted a one-year contract extension through the 1997 season.

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Catcher Joe Girardi was traded by the Colorado Rockies to the New York Yankees for minor league pitcher Mike DeJean and a player to be determined. Girardi, 31, hit .262 last season with eight homers and 55 RBIs. He has a career average of .269.

Basketball

Arizona’s basketball team is back in the Associated Press’ top 25. Arizona’s streak of being ranked in 144 consecutive polls was broken when the Wildcats were missing from the preseason rankings last week. The Wildcats were 19th in the first regular-season voting after winning two games to reach the semifinals of the Preseason NIT. Kentucky, which is next in the consecutive poll streak with 90, remained No. 1 with 42 first-place votes and 1,567 points, 27 more than Kansas, which held second and had 18 first-place votes from sportswriters and broadcasters. Villanova is No. 3 and UCLA No. 4.

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Cross-Country

Godfrey Siamusiye of Arkansas won the NCAA cross-country race and four teammates followed him in the top 50 at Ames, Iowa, as the Razorbacks earned their fifth men’s title in six years and their eighth since 1984. Providence ended Villanova’s run of women’s championships at six. Villanova’s six-year string of individual champions also was broken as Wisconsin’s Kathy Butler won the race. UCLA’s Mebrahtom Keflezighi finished ninth among 177 in the men’s individual standings.

Soccer

FIFA president Joao Havelange agreed in principle to rotate the World Cup tournament among soccer’s regional confederations. The 1998 tournament will be in France, and Japan and South Korea are the two bidders for the 2002 tournament. Germany is thought to be the early favorite for 2006, and South Africa has indicated interest.

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Miscellany

The CIF Southern Section said Monday that a report it received from a private investigation agency that has been looking into whether football referee Ken Smotrys used racial epithets during the Beverly Hills-Compton Centennial game Oct. 20 is incomplete and will be sent back for more background work. A Southern Section source said the 48-page report didn’t answer all of the organization’s questions, and it is demanding further investigation.

The Southern Section Division I championship football game on Dec. 9 will not be played at Anaheim Stadium as originally scheduled. Commissioner Dean Crowley said the game probably will be played at the Coliseum. . . . Winston Cup champion Jeff Gordon, 24, became the first stock car driver to surpass $4 million in earnings, breaking the 2-year-old record of Dale Earnhardt. NASCAR said that Gordon earned nearly $4.35 million. Earnhardt earned more than $3.35 million in 1993.

Swedish golfer Annika Sorenstam, 25, received the Rolex player-of-the-year award and the Vare Trophy for lowest scoring average, making her the only player besides Nancy Lopez to take both honors the year after being LPGA rookie of the year.

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