WHY THEY INVENTED THE DH
? Padres pitcher Bruce Hurst had a hit in his second National League start, then was 0 for 32, including 26 strikeouts. "It's the worst slump of my career," said Hurst. He had never had a regular-season professional at bat before this season.
?Last week Reds reliever Kent Tekulve singled against the Braves' Joe Boever for his first hit since Aug. 9, 1982. It lifted Tekulve's career batting average to .083.
THE LEGEND OF MITCH
Cubs reliever Mitch Williams spotted a rat on the field at Wrigley last week, got a bat and crushed it. "I always was a lowball hitter," said Williams.
THINK OF IT ON A GRAPH
Have the Cubs been inconsistent? They started the season winning eight out of 10, lost eight of their next nine, won eight of 11, lost five in a row, won 16 of 22, lost six of eight, won five in a row, then lost seven straight (through June 28).
SECRET OF THEIR SUCCESS
George Bush dropped by to watch the Orioles play at Memorial Stadium on June 28, and the O's beat the Blue Jays 2-1. That made the Orioles 2-0 with Bush watching in Baltimore and 3-0 overall ( Bush went to an Orioles game in Anaheim earlier this season). "I didn't vote for him last time, but I will the next time," said manager Frank Robinson. "I don't see why he can't come see us two or three times a week," said pitcher Brian Holton. "He can't be that busy."
ALL IN THE FAMILY
Trader Jack McKeon of the Padres sent his son-in-law, Greg Booker, to the Twins for Fred Toliver on June 28. If that seems coldhearted, there is historic precedent for such a deal: In December 1968, Dodger general manager Al Campanis traded his son Jim to Kansas City for two minor leaguers.
THE USUAL JUNE WEDDING
Seattle first base coach Rusty Kuntz wanted his marriage to Salli Elmore, on June 22, to take place on top of the Kingdome roof, but he had to settle for a ceremony at home plate because of problems with the insurance. Kuntz then had another problem. He brought along only one witness and needed two, so a member of the Mariners' grounds crew had to fill in.
?If the Dodgers' Mike Morgan ends the season leading the National League in earned run average and has a losing record (he now has a league-leading 1.69 ERA and is 5-7), he will follow Joe Magrane (of the Cardinals) and Nolan Ryan (with the '87 Astros) as the third straight ERA leader in the NL to finish under .500.