Of complications from pneumonia, former All-Star pitcher Steve Barber, 68. In
1963 Barber (above) became the first 20-game winner in Orioles history when he
went 20--13 with a 2.75 ERA. Midway through the '67 season, the lefty took part
in one of the wildest no-hitters baseball has ever seen. Pitching in Baltimore,
he walked 10 Tigers in 8 2/3 hitless innings before he was finally pulled with
two men on and the score tied 1--1. Detroit then scored the winning run on an
error. (Barber also hit two batters, had one wild pitch and made a throwing
error that day.) In his 15-year career with seven teams, Barber was 121--106
and made two All-Star teams.
By the Los Angeles County coroner's office, that USC kicker Mario Danelo was
legally intoxicated when he fell to his death last month (Scorecard, Jan. 15).
Danelo, 21, was found at the base of a 100-foot cliff on Jan. 6. The coroner's
report found that Danelo's blood alcohol level was nearly three times the legal
limit—but the report did not ascertain the manner in which he died. Several of
Danelo's USC teammates said after his death that they do not believe the kicker
took his own life.
By the Major League Baseball commissioner's office, the one-year, $15.8-million
contract that leftfielder Barry Bonds signed last month with the Giants. The
contract, which included a clause allowing the team to terminate the deal
should Bonds be indicted, was dismissed because it contained language requiring
Bonds to make personal appearances on behalf of the team. Such
personal-appearance provisions are banned by baseball. The Giants reworded the
contract and sent it back to Bonds but the slugger's agent said, "At this
time, Barry is not signing the new documents."
By two North American sports franchise owners, $880 million to purchase
Liverpool of the English Premier League. Tom Hicks, who owns the Texas Rangers
and the Dallas Stars, and George Gillett Jr., who is the owner of the Montreal
Canadiens, teamed up to bid for England's most successful club. If the sale
goes through, Liverpool would be the third Premiership club purchased by
Americans in two years. Cleveland Browns owner Randy Lerner bought Aston Villa
last summer, and in 2005 Tampa Bay Buccaneers owner Malcolm Glazer took over
Manchester United for $1.55 billion.
By Miami police as part of an investigation into a shooting death, Bengals wide
receiver Chad Johnson (above). The victim—27-year-old Curtis Tavares Dopson,
who was shot on Jan. 26 outside the duplex where he lived—was a childhood
friend of Johnson's. No arrests have been made, and the Bengals issued a
statement saying that "police have characterized this as a routine
procedure and have stressed that Chad is not a suspect or even a person of
interest in this case."
The deadline for the Hornets to pick up their option to play next season in
Oklahoma City. The decision means that the team will return to play a full
41-game schedule in New Orleans for the first time since 2004--05. The Hornets,
who ranked last in the NBA in attendance during their final season in New
Orleans, sold out 18 of 36 games in Oklahoma City last season and have sold out
seven there so far this year. "We're extremely grateful to the people in
Oklahoma City," says Hornets owner George Shinn. "[But] the right thing
to do is for us to go back."
Indefinitely by the Italian soccer federation, professional games after a
policeman was killed in a riot started by fans. (Additionally, a friendly
between the Italian national team and Romania scheduled for Wednesday was
called off.) Last Friday, supporters of Serie A sides Catania and Palermo
clashed outside a stadium in Sicily. Filippo Raciti, a 38-year-old police
officer, was killed in the melee. More than 100 people were injured in the
violence and nine were arrested. "People have got to understand it's time
for a change," said Italian prime minister Romano Prodi.
By Senator John Kerry, that the FCC investigate a pending deal that would give
DirecTV the exclusive right to broadcast out-of-market baseball games. In
recent years cable subscribers could purchase MLB's Extra Innings package,
which includes dozens of games each week. But MLB's agreement with DirecTV
would mean that fans would have to purchase a satellite dish to get the games.
Approximately 15 million people in the U.S. have DirecTV; 75 million have
cable. (SI is a unit of Time Warner, which also has a cable television
division.) In a letter to FCC chairman Kevin Martin, Kerry, an avid Boston fan,
wrote, " Red Sox Nation stretches all across our country from coast to
coast. I am concerned that this deal, and others that may follow, will separate
fans from their favorite teams and reduce competition in the sports
For two games without pay by the NBA last week for drunk driving, Eric
Musselman. The first-year Kings coach pleaded no contest to a charge of driving
under the influence and received a $580 fine. Musselman (left) was pulled over
on Oct. 21 following a 112--96 win over the Jazz in an exhibition game. "I
made a mistake and take full responsibility," Musselman said.
"Hopefully, this will provide closure on the matter."
At age 90, Bing Devine, who as G.M. of the St. Louis Cardinals pulled off one
of the most lopsided trades in baseball history. In 1964 he swapped sore-armed
pitcher Ernie Broglio for Cubs outfielder Lou Brock, who went on to a Hall of
Fame career in St. Louis. Devine served two stints as the Redbirds' G.M., from
1958 to '64 and from '68 to '78. His teams won two NL pennants and one World