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TABLE OF CONTENTS

March 25, 2002 | Volume 96, Issue 13

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Jason Giambi Cover - Sports Illustrated March 25, 2002

March 25, 2002 | Stephen Cannella
For the O's to improve, the kids have to keep up with ageless Jeff Conine

March 25, 2002 | Stephen Cannella
Orioles leadoff batters hit. 192 with a .287 on-base percentage last season, both major league lows.

March 25, 2002 | Stephen Cannella
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Orioles

March 25, 2002 | Stephen Cannella
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Stephen Cannella
An out-with-the-old, in-with-the-new plan offers hope—just not for this year

March 25, 2002 | Stephen Cannella
Devil Rays pitchers open the season on a major-league-record run of 152 straight starts without a complete game.

March 25, 2002 | Stephen Cannella
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Devil Rays

March 25, 2002 | Stephen Cannella
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Phil Taylor
Good young arms plus scary veteran bats add up to a team to be reckoned with

March 25, 2002 | Phil Taylor
Frank Thomas remains the major leagues' active career leader in on-base percentage, at .438, though it has fallen .014 since the end of the 1997 season.

March 25, 2002 | Phil Taylor
an opposing team's scout sizes up the White Sox

March 25, 2002 | Phil Taylor
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Mark Bechtel
They smoothly field questions about their future—and every ball hit their way

March 25, 2002 | Mark Bechtel
During Tom Kelly's 15-plus years as Twins skipper, 124 managers were hired by other clubs; 13 teams hired at least five.

March 25, 2002 | Mark Bechtel
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Twins

March 25, 2002 | Mark Bechtel
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Mark Bechtel
With a dropoff in firepower, this Tribe won't be lighting it up in the postseason

March 25, 2002 | Mark Bechtel
Cleveland and Anaheim have gone 27 years without a 20-game winner. Gaylord Perry and Nolan Ryan were the last for each team, respectively.

March 25, 2002 | Mark Bechtel
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Indians

March 25, 2002 | Mark Bechtel
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Mark Bechtel
There may be less bickering in Detroit, but not more bang from a popgun offense

March 25, 2002 | Mark Bechtel
The 2001 Tigers were just the second team since 1980 to hit 60 triples in a season. (The '84 Blue Jays had 68.)

March 25, 2002 | Mark Bechtel
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Tigers

March 25, 2002 | Mark Bechtel
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Mark Bechtel
The embattled manager is all smiles and yuks this spring. Why, exactly, is a mystery

March 25, 2002 | Mark Bechtel
In the past 11 years, 11 hitters have led the Royals in RBIs. The most ever is 12, by the 1913-24 Pirates.

March 25, 2002 | Mark Bechtel
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Royals

March 25, 2002 | Mark Bechtel
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
They won't win 116 games again, but that's O.K.—they've got bigger things in mind

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
Last season's Mariners were the first team since the 1993 Tigers to lead the majors in both runs scored (927) and runners left on base (1,257).

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Mariners

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
Even after losing its big stick, this club gets plenty of bang for its limited bucks

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
Last year Miguel Tejada (31) and Eric Chavez (32) became the first shortstop-third base combo in major league history to each hit 30 home runs in the same season.

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Athletics

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
Nothing would be more heavenly than a return to form by two pivotal sluggers

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
The 2001 Angels were 65-0 when leading after eight innings, the best such mark since the 1999 Astros (82-0).

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Angels

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002
Sweet 16Sarah Hughes is a real girl with genuine family values, the kind of role model that youths need. I cried watching her skate to victory. She was so happy that she seemed to soar without...

March 25, 2002
Letters

March 25, 2002 | Stephen Cannella
An unpredictable staff, a volatile clubhouse and a Murderers' Row—things won't be dull

March 25, 2002 | Stephen Cannella
The Rangers have not had a Rookie of the Year since Mike Hargrove in 1974, the longest American League drought.

March 25, 2002 | Stephen Cannella
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Rangers

March 25, 2002 | Stephen Cannella
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Josh Elliott
The addition of a renowned Sheff adds much-needed spice to a bland offense

March 25, 2002 | Josh Elliott
Gary Sheffield has a career batting average of .457 against the Mets' projected starting rotation.

March 25, 2002 | Josh Elliott
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Braves

March 25, 2002 | Josh Elliott
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
No team made more changes this winter, but will they turn out to be for the better?

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
Rey Ordoñez had a career-high 31 extra-base hits last year despite having none in June (82 plate appearances).

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Mets

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
This talented young bunch needed a leader. They got themselves a Rock

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
The Marlins lost more games (24) in their opponents' last at bat than any other team in the majors last season.

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Marlins

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Josh Elliott
Last year was nice, but the status quo won't be enough for Philly to move up

March 25, 2002 | Josh Elliott
The Phillies were the only team in the majors without an RBI from a designated hitter in 2001 (32 at bats).

March 25, 2002 | Josh Elliott
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Phillies

March 25, 2002 | Josh Elliott
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
A team teetering on the brink of extinction is pondering what might have been

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
The last team to draw fewer fans at home in a nonstrike year than the 2001 Expos (619,451) was the 1979 A's (306,763).

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Expos

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Josh Elliott
The Redbirds lost a megastar, but there might just be an MVP waiting in the wings

March 25, 2002 | Josh Elliott
Edgar Renteria and Fernando Viña topped the Cardinals with 17 stolen bases each last season, St. Louis's lowest team-leading total in a nonstrike year since Julian Javier's 11 in 1961.

March 25, 2002 | Josh Elliott
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Cardinals

March 25, 2002 | Josh Elliott
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Josh Elliott
A suddenly younger team will count on a superb staff and that old offensive pop

March 25, 2002 | Josh Elliott
After he's hit by two more pitches, Craig Biggio will move past Frank Robinson (198) and into third on the all time list.

March 25, 2002 | Josh Elliott
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Astros

March 25, 2002 | Josh Elliott
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
Will baseball's longest championship drought finally end? Don't count on it

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
Batters in 2001 hit for a lower average (.202) against Kerry Wood than any other pitcher in the major leagues.

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
an opposing teams scout sizes up the Cubs

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
Wanted: a spark at the top of the order and power in the middle of the lineup

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
The 2001 Brewers were the first major league team whose batters had more strikeouts (1,399) than hits (1,378).

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Brewers

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
How bad are the Reds? Two years ago their ace was a minor leaguer—in Japan

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
Jason Larue threw out 60.9% of would-be base stealers last year. He was the only regular NL catcher with a success rate of better than 45%.

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Reds

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
Brian Giles is a superstar, but the naked truth is: The rest of this team stinks

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
Reacquired reliever Mike Williams's 29 career wins are the most of any active Pirates pitcher.

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Pirates

March 25, 2002 | Jeff Pearlman
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Phil Taylor
An aging squad insists last year's magic was no last hurrah. They might be right

March 25, 2002 | Phil Taylor
The Diamondbacks will attempt to join the 1907-08 Cubs, 1921-22 Giants and 1975-76 Reds as the only National League teams to repeat as World Series champs.

March 25, 2002 | Phil Taylor
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Diamondbacks

March 25, 2002 | Phil Taylor
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Phil Taylor
Signs of change for the better still may not get last year's runner-up back to the top

March 25, 2002 | Phil Taylor
Dusty Baker needs 79 victories to move into second place alltime among Giants managers. He trails John McGraw (2,604) and Bill Terry (823).

March 25, 2002 | Phil Taylor
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Giants

March 25, 2002 | Phil Taylor
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Stephen Cannella
Who's on third? It could be a long season if Adrian Beltre doesn't have a big year

March 25, 2002 | Stephen Cannella
In 2001 Shawn Green became the first Dodger to hit 40 or more homers and steal 20 or more bases in a season.

March 25, 2002 | Stephen Cannella
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Dodgers

March 25, 2002 | Stephen Cannella
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Phil Taylor
Think there's nowhere to go but up for the NL's worst defensive team? Think again

March 25, 2002 | Phil Taylor
Last season the Padres were no-hit twice and shut out a major-league-high 16 times, yet wound up sixth in the NL in runs.

March 25, 2002 | Phil Taylor
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Padres

March 25, 2002 | Phil Taylor
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Phil Taylor
Bank on more cost cutting if a pair of aces fails to rebound from a poor 2001

March 25, 2002 | Phil Taylor
On May 19 the Rockies were defeated 1-0 (by the Marlins) for only the second time in their nine-year history.

March 25, 2002 | Phil Taylor
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Rockies

March 25, 2002 | Phil Taylor
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002
We ranked the position players in the major leagues from 1 (the best) to 400 and the pitchers from 1 to 350 based on our projections of their statistical production this season. The categories...

March 25, 2002 | Rick Reilly
Talk about a rebuilding year. The New York City Fire Department football team starts its National Public Safety League season next week missing seven starters, 12 alums and two coaches. But the...

March 25, 2002 | Steve Rushin
Tournament upsets Rendered in couplets? Beware the March muse, For Madness ensues

March 25, 2002 | Richard Deitsch
don't miss

March 25, 2002 | Pete McEntegart
Detroit Tigers radio voice Ernie Harwell, 84, announced last month that this will be his final season broadcasting major league games after 55 years, 42 of them with the Tigers.

March 25, 2002 | Richard Deitsch
Actor Dennis Quaid won't knuckle under to our heat

March 25, 2002 | Pete McEntegart
The online auction item of the weekWinning Bid: $158.90DESCRIPTION: This painting on the cover of a 1954 calendar portrays the notorious misanthrope Ty Cobb looking positively avuncular while...

March 25, 2002 | Jim Bouton
A former big leaguer and author of the groundbreaking Ball Four explains what the Ruben Rivera incident was really about

March 25, 2002 | Jim Bouton
Rivera isn't the first sports figure who's been connected to missing objects. Here's a look at two recent examples.

March 25, 2002 | Don Yaeger
Last May, SI recounted the story of a mouse that was genetically altered by a team of researchers at Penn's Department of Physiology (SI, May 14, 2001). He-man, as we dubbed him, had been injected...

March 25, 2002
In anticipation of Sunday's Oscars ceremony, we handicap some of the top categories according to an important criterion that Academy members fail to take into account: What's the best choice for a...

March 25, 2002 | Don Yaeger
3,000Euros, or about $2,600, the sum that the German Hockey League fined Berlin Polar Bears forward Scott Levins for calling a referee a Nazi during an on-ice dispute; Levins, a U.S. citizen,...

March 25, 2002 | Daniel G. Habib
Warriors center Adonal Foyle believes more athletes would become politically active except, he says, "most people who approach them with a political agenda don't explain the issues. All they want...

March 25, 2002 | Amy Ruth Levine
When I was in third grade, I wore my skate key on a red shoelace around my neck. It was 1976, and a skate key was a badge of honor: It told the world I'd mastered the knee-skinning, elbow-bruising...

March 25, 2002
Blocked•By hundreds of U.S. companies, employee access to online sports sites during the NCAA basketball tournament. Companies including Travelers Insurance and several banks were responding to...

March 25, 2002
Build your own field of dreams. Sign up now and join one of our two free baseball fantasy games or run your own league at cnnsi.com/fantasy.

March 25, 2002 | Kelley King
Forward Chucky Brown, who on Monday signed with the Kings for the rest of the season, has played for an NBA-record 12 teams in his 13-year career

March 25, 2002
From HBO—the network that has brought you shows about dysfunctional families (The Sopranos), sexually empowered women (Sex and the City), and empty-headed sports figures (Arli$$)—comes Baseball...

March 25, 2002
Former heavyweight champion Larry Holmes, 52, has agreed to a 10-round bout against onetime Toughman champ and novelty act Butterbean.

March 25, 2002
TODD MACCULLOCHNets center and University of Washington alum, on the 20 friends who came to watch a New Jersey game in Seattle even though he sat out with an injury: "It would have been less if...

March 25, 2002 | Mark Beech
A monster move in the Florida Derby gave focus to a fuzzy Kentucky Derby picture

March 25, 2002 | Mark Bechtel
No MLS team benefited more from the league's contraction than New England

March 25, 2002 | Mark Bechtel
Who's the favorite to win the MLS Cup? We rank the teams from top to bottom:

March 25, 2002 | Mark Bechtel
For Donnie MacMillan, there is nothing finer than to be Carolina's king of ice

March 25, 2002
Jennie Finch, LA MIRADA, CALIF.SoftballFinch, a senior righthanded pitcher at Arizona, shut out Louisiana-Lafayette 1-0 to win her 56th consecutive game, an NCAA record. She struck out 12 in the...

March 25, 2002 | Grant Wahl
Each team in the NCAAs measures success differently. Here's our take on the Week One winners and losers

March 25, 2002 | Grant Wahl
CREIGHTONTerrell Taylor's trey to beat Florida in double OT was defining moment of first week of these NCAAs

March 25, 2002 | Grant Wahl
CONFERENCE USAFancies itself power conference but is still just underachieving Cincinnati and not much else

March 25, 2002 | Grant Wahl
DUKECarnage in South leaves open path for Dookies to Final Four, their standard of success

March 25, 2002
HandywomenTennessee's Gwen Jackson (13) and Shyra Ely get high-handed in pursuit of a rebound as Notre Dame players watch helplessly during the Lady Vols' 89-50 win in the NCAA tournament.

March 25, 2002 | Alan Shipnuck
With spring in the air and the Masters nearing, Tiger Woods shook off his winter doldrums and won at Bay Hill for the third straight year

March 25, 2002 | Tim Layden
"I came here to see if we can pitch it around in the NFL. I don't see why we can't..."

March 25, 2002
The NBA

March 25, 2002 | Ian Thomsen
The 'I' in ClippersContract worries and their owner's stingy ways have L.A.'s players thinking selfishly

March 25, 2002 | Ian Thomsen
Keith Van Horn sent a note of support last week to former Nets teammate Jayson Williams, who has been charged with manslaughter and obstructing the law in the Feb. 14 fatal shooting of limousine...

March 25, 2002 | Ian Thomsen
On Grizzlies rookie Shane Battier, who through Sunday was averaging 14.6 points, 5.3 rebounds and 1.70 steals:

March 25, 2002 | Kelley King
Two ingredients in Troy Hudson's emergence for the Magic: oil and rap

March 25, 2002 | Daniel G. Habib
Wily CoyotesBy trading expensive stars for younger and cheaper players, Phoenix has risen quickly

March 25, 2002 | Daniel G. Habib
Maxim AfinogenovRW SABRESThe 22-year-old Muscovite had 34 points and a career-high 20 goals through Sunday. In three NHL seasons the 6-foot 195-pounder had averaged .50 points per game.

March 25, 2002 | Pierre McGuire
Don't be surprised to see the Flyers cut down on the playing and practice time of defenseman Kim Johnsson, who is beginning to wear down. Johnsson was averaging 23:14 per game through Sunday and...

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
Armed with better tools and new techniques, today's batters have taken over the game. Pity the pitchers

March 25, 2002 | Phil Taylor
It has taken an overhauled stance—and gobs of extra-thick pine tar—to turn Arizona's Luis Gonzalez from spray hitter to feared slugger

March 25, 2002
PREMIUM VINTAGE LUMBER

March 25, 2002
Pride. Possessiveness. Passion. A belter can have a welter of feelings for his most important professional partner. Just listen to these sluggers

March 25, 2002 | Stephen Cannella
Carving a new niche in maple, a Canadian woodworker gave hitters an alternative to ash and unleashed the boutique bat business

March 25, 2002 | Stephen Cannella
Many hitters believe maple gives them extra pop, but an exclusive test suggests that a bat's bark may have scant effect on its bite

March 25, 2002
Playoff Predictions

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
Who could be the breakout Yankee this year? Would you believe Mike Mussina?

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
Last season Mariano Rivera led the majors with 13 saves in outings longer than one inning.

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Yankees

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
It's shaping up as more of the same: Pray for Pedro and wait till next year

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
Rickey Henderson has 1,395 stolen bases since the start of the 1979 season, 13 more than his new team in that span.

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Red Sox

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
Once they've endured their growing pains, the New Jays should improve with age

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
With 34 homers and 32 steals, Jose Cruz Jr. became just the eighth AL 30-30 man and the first since 1998.

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Blue Jays

March 25, 2002 | Tom Verducci
with defensive ratings

March 25, 2002 | Ivan Maisel
The rebirth of the LPGA's crusade to win over fans with good looks and good cheer coincided with the death of one of its most glamorous founders—and raised an age-old question

March 25, 2002 | Edited by Alan Shipnuck
After a sleepy start the season finally awakens this week

March 25, 2002 | Edited by Alan Shipnuck
TV never would have cut away from a playoff involving Tiger Woods, and having a cable network dis your top player—as ESPN did by pulling the plug on Annika Sorenstam on Sunday—is the ultimate...

March 25, 2002 | Gary Smith
Why does Phil Mickelson so often play second fiddle to Tiger Woods? Look no further than Lefty's reckless gamble at Bay Hill

March 25, 2002 | Sal Johnson
With his victory at Bay Hill, Tiger Woods has converted 22 of 24 third-round leads....

March 25, 2002 | Gary Smith
Playing your best transcends the physical. You also need solid course management, so here's a four-step checklist for when you find yourself in an awkward position.

March 25, 2002 | Gary Smith
Stop and goWoods laid up for a one-putt birdie, while Mickelson's risky attempt resulted in a two-putt bogey.

March 25, 2002
Jesper Parnevik's nannies—a pair of fetching Swedes—have been getting a lot of notice lately, and apparently one of them, Elin, has caught the eye of golf's most eligible bachelor, Tiger Woods....

March 25, 2002
What's the most exciting par-3 on the PGA Tour: the 17th at the TPC at Sawgrass (Players), the 12th at Augusta National (Masters), the 17th at Pebble Beach (AT&T Pro-Am) or the 16th at the TPC...

March 25, 2002 | John Garrity
Scott Hoch can live with the incongruity of being described as both a cantankerous boor and a refreshing truth-teller. What bugs him is that after all these years, his game gets no respect