Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Morning Briefing Eye Openers

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Morning Briefing Eye Openers

Article excerpt

Taken in by a joke: Until recently, Dodgers manager TOM LASORDA couldn't figure out why his shirts seemed to be shrinking on him a few years back.

Lasorda told the Los Angeles Times that he would return from a trip only to find his golf shirts too tight.

NOBE KAWANO, then the clubhouse attendant, got the wrath of Lasorda, who yelled, "What are you doing when you wash these shirts? You must be shrinking them because they are tight."

But Kawano had done nothing. Prankster and pitcher JERRY REUSS, a St. Louisan who hurled for the Dodgers from 1979 to 1987, had Lasorda's shirts altered several times.

"I would have his shirt taken in a half-inch on each side, then put it in his closet and take the other shirts away," said Reuss, who never told Lasorda about it. A family friend told Lasorda about the tailor trick.

No Small Changeup: ALLAN MALAMUD of the LA Times reports that a NAPOLEON "LARRY" LAJOIE baseball card was sold recently for $63,000 at an auction in Beverly Hills.

Lajoie, in case you forgot, played 21 years in the majors (from 1896 to 1916) for Philadelphia and Cleveland - one of the few ballplayers in the history of the game to win batting titles on two different clubs. He also won batting titles in 1901 (.422), 1903 (.355) and 1904 (.381).

Vacation Vagaries: DAN SALEAUMUA, the Chiefs' nose tackle, can't understand why so many fans from Kansas City used their vacations to visit training camp in River Falls, Wis., to get their first glimpse of new quarterback JOE MONTANA.

"It's like if you were planning a vacation and someone said, `Where would you like to go - Acapulco, Cabo San Lucas or River Falls?' " Saleaumua said. "If I had my choice, I'd be in Cabo San Lucas."

The secret formula: Did you ever wonder how the National Football League computes its quarterback passer rating? Football Digest explains it: (Completion percentage) + (Average gain/attempts x 5) + 2.5 + (touchdown percentage x 400) - (Interception percentage x 500) x 5 divided by 6.

Got all that?

Helmet-ically Incorrect: JUSTIN STRZELCZYK is toning down his tough-guy biker's image to avoid offending Pittsburgh's large ethnic population.

The inoffensive Strzelczyk, an offensive lineman with the Steelers, used to wear a German military-style helmet as he rode his Harley-Davidson around town, but he has changed helmets since realizing some might object to his garb. …

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