SI Vault
Peter Gammons
August 29, 1988
A PUZZLING TRADE It is not difficult to understand why the Dodgers were interested in trading first baseman Pedro Guerrero for Cardinals pitching ace John Tudor last week. The Dodgers badly needed a lefthanded starter to replace the injured Fernando Valenzuela, and Tudor, who is 50-15 since May 29, 1985, and is leading the National League with a 2.22 ERA, is one of the two or three best lefties in the majors. What is baffling about the deal is what the Cardinals get out of it. Why would they trade their best pitcher for a player who, despite his .310 lifetime average going into this season, has been dogged by injuries for years? Guerrero has been sidelined a good part of the season with a pinched nerve, and though he is only 32, one Dodger official says he has "a 40-year-old body." Before one of his first games as a Cardinal, Guerrero shook hands with oft-injured Astro pitcher Joaquin Andujar, and Houston bullpen assistant Strech Suba said, "That's a trainer's nightmare right there."
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August 29, 1988


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Two-time batting champ Tony Gwynn of the Padres has climbed back into contention for the National League crown after hitting as low as .237 on June 13, but he's still not satisfied. "If I win the batting title." he says, "I'll put the silver bat right up there with the other two. But I won't be as proud of this one because I stunk the first three months."...

Most of 60 bases stolen last season by Mariners second baseman Harold Reynolds involved headfirst slides. But he ended the season so banged up he decided to go feetfirst this year. The result? Reynolds is 27 for 50. Last year, in contrast, he was caught stealing only 20 times....

The Cubs would like their two hitting phenoms, first baseman Mark Grace and outfielder Rafael Palmeiro, to try to pull the ball occasionally for more power. "We've talked about [Yankee first baseman] Don Mattingly and how he'll use counts and situations and try to drive the ball," says Chicago general manager Jim Frey. "It's a matter of experience."...

Why does Yankee owner George Steinbrenner want to dump power-hitting third baseman Mike Pagliarulo? The Boss was willing to trade Pags to the Mariners last month for third baseman Jim Presley as part of the Jay Buhner-Ken Phelps deal or to the White Sox for infielder Steve Lyons—until manager Lou Piniella talked him out of it....

Last week Dave Stieb added his name to the Toronto Bellyaching Society and asked to be traded. Said Jays pitcher Mike Flanagan, "We've had so many people paint themselves into corners that our clubhouse is shaped like the Pentagon."

[This article contains a table. Please see hardcopy of magazine or PDF.]

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