Baseball executives, mindful that regular-season games involving replacement players will likely count even if the strike is settled, began shaking up their rosters with a new urgency last week. It wasn't a pretty sight.
NEW YORK YANKEES—"Fired" catchers Juan Velazquez and Orlando Rodriguez; outfielder Eric Garnett; infielder John Kupsey; and utilitymen Eddie Gonzalez and Tom Wright. Owner George Steinbrenner reprimanded front office for being "asleep at the switch."
CLEVELAND INDIANS—Released catcher Dan Gray and outfielder Lee Granger; traded pitcher Mike Curtis and outfielders Mike Palivoda and Barbara Garbey to Cincinnati Reds for future considerations. " Cleveland got the better of the deal," said Red manager Davey Johnson. "They didn't get anybody."
CINCINNATI REDS—Signed Gray and Granger; then released both, citing Gray's sore right arm and Granger's two pulled hamstrings and sore arm; signed 238-pound, multichinned pitcher Pedro Borbon, 48, who last played in majors in 1980. In camp, after falling while running sprints, Borbon approached manager Johnson, saying, "You know what they do to dead horse? They shoot it." Replied Johnson, "We wouldn't waste the bullet."