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BASEBALL HELD HOSTAGE -- PART II: NEWS FROM 15 MLB CITIES
Published February 21, 1995
BALTIMORE -- PETER'S PRINCIPLES: The Orioles informed MLB that they won't play spring training games against teams using replacement players (Mark Maske, WASHINGTON POST, 2/18). Acting MLB Commissioner Bud Selig said the opposition from Orioles Owner Peter Angelos "isn't anything new, obviously" (Buster Olney, Baltimore SUN, 2/18). But columnist Ken Rosenthal asks: "How would the Orioles know if their opponent was using scabs?" (Baltimore SUN, 2/18). CALIFORNIA -- SLOW TICKET SALES: Angels VP of Stadium Operations Kevin Ulich said sales of tickets to Cactus League games are down about 5,000 from this point last year, and sales of regular season games are down about 2,800 (Mike DiGiovanna, L.A. TIMES, 2/20). CINCINNATI -- HARD LINE: Reds GM Jim Bowden said Reds minor leaguers will be expected to play in Grapefruit League games. Bowden: "If they decide not to perform, they have that statutory right and we will not discipline them. They will be put on the disqualified list and go home" (Chris Haft, CINCINNATI ENQUIRER, 2/18). COLORADO -- REPLACEMENT PARK: According to the team's ad agency, the "star" of the Rockies' '95 marketing campaign will not be the players, but the team's new stadium, Coors Field (Norm Clarke, ROCKY MOUNTAIN NEWS, 2/19). DETROIT -- PARTING THOUGHTS? Tigers Manager Sparky Anderson, who went on unpaid leave Friday rather than manage replacement players, called the team a "mess" and accused the front office of "phoniness" (DETROIT FREE PRESS, 2/20). FLORIDA -- RIGHTS FEES: Marlins President Don Smiley said if replacement games are played for an extended period, he would consider reducing the rights fees of the team's TV partners or increasing the number of telecasts on Sunshine Network and WBFS- TV (Barry Jackson, MIAMI HERALD, 2/19). LOS ANGELES -- PICKET PREPARATIONS: The Dodgers, the only private owner of a spring training facility, met with local authorities to prepare for possible picket lines at Dodgertown (Bob Nightengale, L.A. TIMES, 2/20). MINNESOTA -- AD TIME: Midwest Sports Channel GM Kevin Cattor said he will decide in a few weeks whether MSC will lower its ad rates to attract more advertisers to Twins games. WCCO-TV will do the same this week (Rachel Blount, Minneapolis STAR TRIBUNE, 2/21). Some Twins sponsors have requested "rate adjustments," and WCCO-TV is "struggling" to sell ads at full price (ST. PAUL PIONEER PRESS, 2/17). MONTREAL -- ALOU WAVERS: Expos Manager Felipe Alou said he is undecided whether he would manage a replacement team (AP/Toronto GLOBE & MAIL, 2/21). NEW YORK -- SHOWALTER PUTS OFF DECISION: Early on Friday, Yankees Manager Buck Showalter "expressed uncertainty about whether he would manage replacement Yankees." By the afternoon, he said he would be at the March 2 spring training opener, but he put off a decision on the regular season (Jack Curry, N.Y. TIMES, 2/18). OAKLAND -- OPEN-DOOR POLICY: A's President & GM Sandy Alderson, on the team's openness on their replacement players: "We don't want to expose any of our guys to pressure or ridicule" (SAN JOSE MERCURY NEWS, 2/19). PHILADELPHIA -- WHAT TO DO? The Phillies are to open their spring schedule with the Orioles on March 3, but the O's say they won't play teams with replacement players. Phillies GM Lee Thomas: "If we're just going to play minor-leaguers against minor-leaguers, then why do we even have the replacement players here?" (PHILA. INQUIRER, 2/19). PITTSBURGH -- JOB TO DO: Pirates Manager Jim Leyland, who described the scene as "weird," will manage the team this spring: "I have to do my job. And I intend to do that to the best of my ability" (PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE, 2/21). ST. LOUIS -- UNION TOWN: Labor leaders are urging the St. Louis area's 250,000 union members to boycott Busch Stadium if the Cardinals use replacement players (Roger Signor, ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH, 2/19). TORONTO -- NO FREE LUNCHES, OR DINNERS: The city of Dunedin's annual "Welcome Back Blue Jays" dinner was cancelled (Jim Byers, TORONTO STAR, 2/18).