THE NEVER-ENDING SEASON
When Indians coach and storyteller extraordinaire Charlie Manuel played in Japan from 1976 to '81, the teams were relentless about making up rainouts. "If the games weren't made up during the season," he recalls, "they were made up after the Japan Series. One year, we had 15 games [actually, it was three] to make up after we won the championship. They got mad at me because I wouldn't stay. It was already November 20 [actually, Nov. 8], and I wanted to go home for Thanksgiving."
PITCH OF THE YEAR
In a game against the Class A Medford (Ore.) A's on Aug. 15, righthander Mike Beiras of the Bellingham (Wash.) Mariners uncorked a fastball that sailed over the 35-foot backstop, out of the park, landed in the parking lot approximately 150 feet from the mound and then rolled to the other side of the street. "I thought about swinging." said the bemused batter, John Buccheri. "But I was more interested in seeing where it was going to end up."
When San Diego's Keith Moreland hit a homer on Sept. 5 in Candlestick Park, it was his first since June 1. So after crossing home plate, he launched into a cartwheel. "On a scale of 1 to 10, it was a 1," said teammate Tony Gwynn, who was annoyed because it looked as if Moreland was trying to show up Giants rookie pitcher Trevor Wilson. "It was spontaneous stupidity," admitted Moreland later.
A HANDFUL OF STARDUST
Going into the All-Star Game, the 10 pitchers on the American League All-Star team had a combined record of 68-30. Since then, they have gone 28-30.
THE LINE ON THE GIANTS
In a Sept. 8 game with the Braves, Giants centerfielder Brett Butler's line was 4 0 4 0. Butler is the team's leadoff hitter and three of his four hits were doubles, yet he didn't score a run. What more do you need to know about the state of San Francisco's fading offense? Though the Giants won that game 3-2, they have lost 14 of their last 17 games and fallen 10 games behind in the National League West.
QUOTE OF THE WEEK
Pittsburgh pitcher Dave LaPoint, complimenting Vice-President George Bush before a game in Houston: "I love your beer."
?Not only are major league homers down 28% from '87, but also no minor league player has hit 30 this season.
?Last week the Angels gave former slugger Reggie Jackson's number 44 to Triple A veteran Richard Monteleone.
? Mets outfielder Kevin McReynolds is 29 for 29 in stolen bases since June 2, 1987.