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A-Rod can’t escape the tell-tale signs

At least this time Alex Rodriguez wasn’t accused of tipping pitches against his own team.

A-Rod and Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeira confronted ESPN analyst and former Cy Young Award winner Rick Sutcliffe on Tuesday for his comments two weeks ago that they thought suggested Rodriguez fed Teixeira verbal signs informing him of the catcher’s location before a pitch.

“Me, Alex and him talked about it,” Teixeira told the New York Daily News. “No doubt it’s disappointing when someone makes an accusation like that. Whatever. I can’t control what they say.”

Given Rodriguez’s reaction to Sutcliffe, the New York Post wondered how A-Rod might react to seeing Selena Roberts, the Sports Illustrated reporter who wrote a book accusing him of steroid use and tipping pitches to friends on opposing teams.

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“If he confronted Sutcliffe in a crowded clubhouse, imagine what he would do to Roberts in a dark alley.”

Trivia time

Which four Lakers each scored at least 20 points in Game 5 of the 1972 NBA Finals against the New York Knicks?

The Mourning after

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Former NBA center Alonzo Mourning isn’t impressed by the coaching in the NBA Finals. And he wasn’t afraid to share his views with reporters on a conference call promoting next month’s American Century Celebrity Golf Championship.

On Lakers Coach Phil Jackson: “I think Phil is just showing up, to tell you the truth. And Kobe is doing all the work to make this team successful.”

On Orlando Coach Stan Van Gundy: “When I see the way Orlando is playing that pick and roll, I mean it’s just ridiculous. It sort of puzzles me with Stan because he was under the tutelage of Pat Riley, who is obviously a huge defensive advocate, that he wouldn’t take a more aggressive approach, especially with the pick-and-roll play.”

Tatt’s hard to believe

After a Polish newspaper published a photo showing a Michael Jordan/Nike logo on the right leg of Marcin Gortat, the Orlando Magic’s backup center, Reebok representatives called Tuesday with a few fashion tips.

Gortat, who has a shoe contract with Reebok, was told that he must wear higher socks to cover the tattoo, or apply makeup so it’s not noticeable.

Gortat’s response? Reebok should’ve signed something in ink if they had a problem with his ink.

“That ain’t going to happen,” Gortat told NBA Fanhouse before Game 3 of the NBA Finals. “I’ve been wearing it four to five years now, and it helped me get to the NBA. “They didn’t say anything about it when I signed the contract, so it’s not going anywhere. I don’t think they are paying me enough to take it off.”

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Trivia answer

Gail Goodrich (25), Jim McMillian (20), Jerry West (23), Wilt Chamberlain (24)

(Question and answer provided by reader David Mirisch of Encinitas.)

And finally

With the Washington Nationals selecting San Diego State pitcher Stephen Strasburg No. 1 overall in Major League Baseball’s first-year player draft, Washington Post columnist Thomas Boswell had this take about negotiations between agent Scott Boras and the Nationals:

“This is an arm-wrestling contest between 97-pound weaklings -- baseball’s worst team, with crowds down 25 percent, and an agent whose two most famous clients are this year’s PED poster boys, A-Rod and Manny Ramirez. Neither wants more headaches.”

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mark.medina@latimes.com

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