Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Morning Briefing

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Morning Briefing

Article excerpt

In the opinion of many, the sport of boxing has gone to the dogs. Thus, it seems fitting that pugilist GERALD McCLELLAN should be fond of pit bulls.

"I do a lot of rough things," said McClellan, who is favored to take the World Boxing Commission super-middleweight title from NIGEL BENN on Saturday. "Boxing, drag racing. The pit bull, of all dogs, is the most aggressive dog out there, so that's the dog I choose to have."

McClellan rated his passion for fighting his dogs just ahead of drag racing and second only to delivering a knockout blow, something he does with stunning efficiency. In 31 victories in 33 pro fights, he has scored 29 knockouts - including 20 in the first round.

McClellan, who said he keeps four pit bulls at his home in Freeport, Ill., rolled up his sleeve to reveal of tattoo of his favorite dog, Deuce, on his left biceps.

"Deuce is about 80 pounds," McClellan said. "He's won most of the fights. I've had him longest. I believe in big, strong dogs."

So, if horse racing is the sport of kings, then boxing must be the sport of . . . canines?

*****

JEROME HOLTZMAN of the Chicago Tribune recalls another era of replacement players. But the major-leaguers weren't on strike. They were serving their country during World War II.

"The manpower shortage was so acute that PETE GRAY, a one-armed outfielder, batted .218 with the defending American League champion St. Louis Browns" in 1945, Holtzman writes. "There was also a one-legged pitcher, BERT SHEPARD of the Washington Senators."

Holtzman noted that the Browns, who won their only pennant in 1944, had 16 4-F's - men physically unfit for military service - on their 1945 club.

Wonder what the old Brownies would think of the strike?

*****

DAVID MOORE in the Dallas Morning News is an inquiring mind who wants to know: "Actor JIM CARREY reportedly can command $18 million for a film just for making silly faces and acting stupid. …

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