Sunday, February 11, 2001
NL Central previews
ST. LOUIS CARDINALS
2000 record: 95-67 (1st)
Manager: Tony LaRussa
Estimated payroll: $75 million
Welcome to the club: 1B-OF Bobby Bonilla, 3B Shane Andrews, RHPs Dustin Hermanson and Steve Kline, OFs John Mabry and Bernard Gilkey.
Say farewell to: INF-OF Shawon Dunston, 1B Will Clark, 3B Fernando Tatis, RHP Britt Reames, OFs Eric Davis and Thomas Howard.
Spring priorities: St. Louis must make sure 1B Mark McGwire's troublesome knee is sound, along with LHP Rick Ankiel's head and throwing mechanics. Craig Paquette is the early favorite to capture the third-base opening, though Andrews and utilityman Placido Polanco will push him. If Ankiel's out of his funk and Matt Morris becomes the No. 5 starter, Garrett Stephenson could be traded for a third baseman or a right-handed-hitting outfielder.
2000 record: 73-89 (3rd)
Manager: Davey Lopes
Estimated payroll: $42 million
Welcome to the club: CF Jeffrey Hammonds, RHPs Will Cunnane and Brandon Kolb.
Say farewell to: 3B Charlie Hayes.
Spring priorities: The Brewers think they have as many as 10 legitimate candidates for the final two spots in the rotation behind Jeff D'Amico, Jimmy Haynes and Jamey Wright. None has the star quality of Olympic hero Ben Sheets, a Rookie of the Year candidate who'll have to fail miserably not to win a job. Marquis Grissom, who has averaged 583 at-bats the last 10 seasons, faces a challenging transition to being a backup behind ex-Red Hammonds.
2000 record: 72-90 (4th)
Manager: Larry Dierker
Estimated payroll: $48 million
Welcome to the club: Cs Brad Ausmus and Jeff Reed, INFs Jose Vizcaino and Charlie Hayes, RHPs Mike Jackson, Kent Bottenfield, Doug Brocail and Nelson Cruz.
Say farewell to: 3B Ken Caminiti, C Mitch Meluskey, INF Tim Bogar, OF Roger Cedeno, RHPs Chris Holt, Joe Slusarski and Marc Valdes.
Spring priorities: Left-handed closer Billy Wagner's elbow and second baseman Craig Biggio's left knee must be sufficiently recovered if the Astros are to regain prominence in the division. Besides Wagner, three other relievers Brocail, Jackson and Jay Powell are coming off arm surgeries. Houston will be eager for early signs of defensive specialist Ausmus' influence on the pitching staff, which recorded an NL-worst 5.42 ERA last year.
2000 record: 69-93 (5th)
Manager: Lloyd McClendon
Estimated payroll: $47 million
Welcome to the club: LHP Terry Mulholland, OFs Derek Bell and Thomas Howard, RHP Billy Taylor, 1B-OF Reggie Jefferson, INF Leo Gomez.
Say farewell to: LHPs Jeff Wallace and Chris Peters.
Spring priorities: The Pirates will closely monitor the health of starting RHPs Jason Schmidt (shoulder) and Francisco Cordova (elbow). Competition for jobs could be fierce, because only Bell, OF Brian Giles and C Jason Kendall are assured of starting. Enrique Wilson and Jack Wilson (no relation) will push 2B Warren Morris and SS Pat Meares. Adrian Brown will get a chance to handle the CF-leadoff combination. The team's adjustment to new manager McClendon, who might be stricter than predecessor Gene Lamont, could be intriguing.
2000 record: 65-97 (6th)
Manager: Don Baylor
Estimated payroll: $65 million
Welcome to the club: C Todd Hundley, 1B Ron Coomer, 1B-OF Matt Stairs, 3B Bill Mueller, LHP Jeff Fassero, RHPs Tom Gordon, Julian Tavarez and Jason Bere.
Say farewell to: 1B Mark Grace, RHP Rick Aguilera, 3B Shane Andrews, C Jeff Reed.
Spring priorities: The Cubs seem to have improved, but their efforts will be nullified if starting RHP Kevin Tapani (knee) and LF Rondell White (knee, shoulder) aren't whole. Finding a closer could be difficult if Gordon, who apparently has recovered from Tommy John elbow surgery in late '99, regresses. Some wonder if RHP Kerry Wood, who avoided elbow setbacks last year, really is OK and whether CF Corey Patterson, a top prospect, is ready. Keeping RF Sammy Sosa's contract hassles from becoming a circus also is key.
Xavier 78, Temple 71
SULLIVAN: XU's Sato aims to please
Muskies: We needed that
UC 64, Southern Mississippi 52
UC's Davis sprains ankle
Best and worst of the week in sports
Miami's injuries mean opportunities
NKU men 94, IPFW 73
NKU women 82, IPFW 48
Kentucky 76, Mississippi St. 57
Mighty Ducks 3. St. Johns 3
Cleveland 7, Cyclones 3
Stuff 102, Trenton 88
Agassi building college prep school
Cincinnati needs a celebrity in the stands
Fox faces big test at Daytona
Girls sectional swim meet
High school wrestling tournaments
High School Insider
N.Ky. regional swim meet
Boys basketball coverage
Girls basketball coverage
CCD beats CHCA to take first in MVC
Cincinnati boys basketball games
Cincinnati girls basketball games
N.Ky. boys basketball games
N.Ky. girls basketball games
Ohio boys basketball scores
Ohio girls basketball scores
Kentucky boys basketball scores
Kentucky girls basketball scores
Indiana boys basketball scores
Indiana girls basketball scores
Boys basketball schedule
Girls basketball schedule
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