THE '87 PIRATE SLOGAN: WE'RE NOT PITIFUL, JUST LOUSY
Under the shrewd public relations directorship of Joe Gallagher, baseball's worst-drawing team last week:
?Informed players that it will cost them $25 apiece for individual copies of the 1986 team photo, which does not include Hipolito Pena.
?Misled the Pittsburgh Press into thinking that first baseman Sid Bream authored a story it ran on the effect of large crowds on player performance. Bream said that only 10% of the actual story was in his words; it turned out that the article was written by Gallagher and edited by a public relations firm.
?Demanded equal time on ESPN after sportscaster Tom Mees referred to the Pirates as "pitiful." In a subsequent debate with Mees, Gallagher said, "You can call us lousy, but not pitiful."
THE LEE ELIA TIRADE OF THE WEEK
Despite a club ban on negative comments about Candlestick Park, Chili Davis aired some thoughts on Sept. 11.
Davis called the crowd of 4,624 "pathetic." Said Davis, "We have about 6,000 real fans. The rest are——who come out to see other teams beat us."
As for good of Candlestick, Davis said, "They should pack up this team and get the hell out of here.... If I were Bob Lurie, I'd pack it up and take a hike. Adios. See you later."
RAGS TO RICHES
Not even the Yankee owner is suggesting that Dave Righetti be returned to the starting rotation. Righetti has succeeded in 23 consecutive save opportunities since July 3 and has broken the Yankee single-season save record of 35, previously held by Sparky Lyle. The Yankees have won only one game that Righetti hasn't saved since Aug. 12.