10 new candidates on Baseball Reliquary’s Shrine of the Eternals ballot

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Bob Hope, Annie Savoy, Donald Fehr, David Wells and Curtis Pride are part of the eclectic group of new 10 candidates for the 2011 election for the Baseball Reliquary’s Shrine of the Eternals.

The 50-name ballot was released by Terry Cannon, the director of the Pasadena-based non-profit organization. The top three votegetters by members of the Baseball Reliquary (who begin casting ballots on April 1) will be enshrined on Sunday, July 17.

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For starters, it’s not the Bob Hope you’re thinking of — the one-time owner of the Cleveland Indians who was far more famously a comedian. This one is a veteran publicity director with 40 years of experience to rose to prominence during Henry Aaron’s pursuit of Babe Ruth’s lifetime home run record in 1973 and ’74. Hope shepherded the slugger through the intense media blitz that preceded the event. During owner Ted Turner’s early reign, Hope contrived a memorable series of promotional events for the lowly Braves, including his most famous (and most sexist) stunt, the 1977 Wet T-Shirt Contest.

Savoy, the sashaying acolyte of the Church of Baseball in director Ron Shelton’s romantic comedy “Bull Durham,” has become a popular culture icon. Susan Sarandon, once banned from appearing at the Baseball Hall of Fame because of her “political” views, played the role of the baseball-, poetry-, and sex-loving Annie who spent each season tutoring a fledgling player in the mysteries of baseball, love, and life before sending him out into the world.

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Fehr, who succeeded Marvin Miller and Ken Moffett as head of the Players Association, presided over the rocky negotiations between baseball labor and management from 1985 to 2009. During his tenure ,Fehr steered the union through lockouts, player strikes, basic agreement tiffs, drug-testing efforts, expansion and television revenue issues, and the notorious collusion case of the mid-1980s in which the union emerged victorious over then-commissioner Peter Ueberroth and a cabal of owners.

Wells, who ended his 21-year career as a member of the Dodgers, was known as the rambunctious, voluble and talented southpaw known as much for his Ruthian training regimen — booze, brawls, and babes. He became a fan favorite in New York, once pitching a perect game, and another time once wearing an original Babe Ruth cap on the mound.

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Pride, when he debuted with the Montreal Expos in 1993, was the big league’s first deaf player since 1945. He ended up playing 12 seasons with eight teams, the last three season with the Angels (2004-06). He received the Tony Congliaro Award in 1996, presented annually to an MLB player who best overcomes adversity. He’s currently the head baseball coach at Gallaudet University.

Former knuckleball pitcher Wilbur Wood, former Providence Grays manager Frank Bancroft, Society for American Baseball Research founder Bob Davids, former troubled Chicago Cubs shortstop Charlie Hollocher and Kansas City Monarchs founding owner J.L. Wilkinson are also on the ballot for the first time.

Meanwhile, Glenn Burke, the former Dodgers gay centerfielder who died of AIDS at the age of 42 in 1995, is also back on the ballot after an eight-year absence.

The other 39 eligible candidates (with years on the ballot in parentheses):
Eliot Asinof (8)
Steve Blass (2)
Chet Brewer (12)
Charlie Brown (4)
Jefferson Burdick (2)
Helen Callaghan (8)
Charles M. Conlon (10)
Dizzy Dean (11)
Ed Delahanty (8)
Bucky Dent (3)
Hector Espino (2)
Eddie Feigner (11)
Lisa Fernandez (11)
Rube Foster (13)
Ted Giannoulas (9)
Eddie Grant (2)
Jim “Mudcat” Grant (7)
Pete Gray (13)
Ernie Harwell (8)
Dr. Frank Jobe (9)
Charles “Pop” Kelchner (4)
Effa Manley (13)
Conrado Marrero (2)
Dr. Mike Marshall (6)
Tug McGraw (8)
Fred Merkle (5)
Manny Mota (4)
Phil Pote (9)
Vic Power (3)
Dan Quisenberry (5)
J.R. Richard (12)
Rusty Staub (6)
Chuck Stevens (3)
Luis Tiant (9)
Fay Vincent (10)
Rube Waddell (13)
John Montgomery Ward (5)
Maury Wills (2)
Don Zimmer (7)

For more info on the Shrine of the Eternals, contact Cannon at P.O. Box 1850, Monrovia, CA 91017; by phone at (626) 791-7647; or by e-mail at terymar@earthlink.net.

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Not to backpedal on the motocross and Dodger Stadium, but nearly 800 comments later, what have we learned?

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Thank you, I believe, is the proper response to all the emails, comments and phone messages that have been posted and left following the recent column (linked here) on Dodger Stadium yielding its facility to last Saturday’s AMA Motocross and an upcoming Monster Truck show.

Thanks, as well, to those who have been provoked to participate in what has become an unintentional sociological experiment into how people today consume, digest and respond to the media.

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Apparently, since many voices needed to be heard on the subject, today’s technology has made that easier. Admirably, many signed their names to their opinions.

My ultimate regret is that the point I tried to make was lost in the noise this created. The focus of the story was to point out that of the many uses the stadium could undergo, it’s a shame that a place considered to have one of the best baseball diamonds in the country would be buried by tons of dirt — whether it be for a motocross, monster truck event or this was a shame

It was written in humor with the intention of sharing the history of the stadium, with no intention of insulting any particular group.

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Have a look at previous blog items posted here several days before the event (linked here and linked here).

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Play it forward: Jan. 24-30 on your sports calendar

Highlights of the week ahead in sports, both here and afar:

MONDAY

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NHL: Kings vs. Boston, Staples Center, 7:30 p.m., FSW:

Upon further review, the Kings request that all instant replay decisions be done away with. Someone up there isn’t looking out for their best wishes. What are you going to do, fine us?

TUESDAY

NBA: Lakers vs. Utah, Staples Center, 7:30 p.m., FSW:

Counting two preseason games, and a six-point loss in Salt Lake City on the day after Thanksgiving, the Lakers have yet to post a win over the Jazz this year. Al Jefferson, a pickup to help the team match up better against the Lakers, had 20 points and eight rebounds last time as the Jazz, coming back from a 19-point deficit, scored the last 11 points to win last time out.

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NBA: Clippers at Dallas, 5:30 p.m., Prime:

The flat-rimmed, “Blake Griffin Works” fitted cap on the team’s online store has just been reduced from $55 to $41.25. We’d suggest the new “Griffin Monster Dunk” black T-shirts with the phrase “Poster Child,” going for just $27.33 (linked here).

NHL: Ducks at Columbus, 4 p.m., FSW:

It’s the Ducks’ only game this week, then they fly away home.

WEDNESDAY

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NHL: Kings vs. San Jose, Staples Center, 7:30 p.m., FSW:

Last chance to get your Ice Girls calendar signed before the team heads out on a 10-game, three-plus week road trip – they won’t be back home until Feb. 24.

NBA: Clippers at Houston, 5:30 p.m., Prime:

Last meeting in December, Eric Gordon was hit for two fouls in the first 4:25, went scoreless in the first half, and Clippers never recovered.

THURSDAY

College basketball: UCLA at Arizona, 6 p.m., ESPN2; USC at Arizona State, 5:30 p.m.:

The Bruins have lost two in a row in Tucson; the Trojans have lost four in a row in Tempe.

Golf: PGA’s Farmer Insurance Open at Torrey Pines, first round, noon, Golf Channel:

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Tiger Woods has committed to opening his 2011 season here, down to No. 3 in the world rankings now behind Lee Westwood and Martin Kaymer. That’s just unacceptable in the western world. CBS has the third- and final-round coverage on Saturday and Sunday from noon to 3 p.m.

FRIDAY

NBA: Lakers vs. Sacramento, Staples Center, 7:30 p.m, FSW:

They’re also offering the “Courtside View” option on Prime Ticket, with the cameras down at Nicholson level. Show some class. Don’t be a joker.

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Tennis: Australian Open, women’s final, midnight, ESPN2:

We’ll get behind the “Petkodance” that Germany’s Andrea Petkovic does after dumping an opponent – like when she ousted Maria Sharapova to move into the quarterfinals. We’ll have to remember it Oktoberfest time. Technically, this match happens Saturday morning, and this runs until 2:30 a.m., with replays Saturday our time at 6 a.m. and 7 p.m.

SATURDAY

Figure Skating: U.S. Championships in Greensboro, North Carolina: women’s free skate, 8 p.m., Channel 4:

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If you know that a soap star named Rebecca Budig won the first series of ABC’s “Skating With The Stars,” now comes the real reality show. Can North Carolina handle a non-NASCAR event? Hill Carrow, the chairman of the group that brought this event to Greensboro, told the Charlotte Observor that he has received calls from fans who insist on sitting on the “50-yard line.” Carrow adds: “This is not football, basketball, golf or NASCAR. Having grown up in North Carolina, I know it’s not a top-of-the-mind thing for most North Carolinians. But we are a great sports state, and this is a great sport that will showcase the very best American figure skaters.” Alissa Czisny (right), currently ranked first in the world, is the favorite with Rachel Flatt, Ashley Wagner and Mirai Nagasu. The men’s finale is Sunday.

NBA: Clippers vs. Charlotte, Staples Center, 7:30 p.m., Prime:

Is this still a good Charlotte? Without Larry Brown?

College basketball: UCLA at Arizona State, 12:30 p.m., Prime; USC at Arizona, 4:30 p.m., Prime:

The Sun Devils, at the bottom of the Pac-10 standings, shot 50 percent from the floor in a loss at conference leader Washington, but that was only the second time that’s happened all season.

Tennis: Australian Open, men’s final, midnight, ESPN2:

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Second-seeded Roger Federer is on track to be the second man to win this event at least five times. Top-seeded Rafael Nadal, still fighting off a virus, could be the first to hold all four Grand Slam titles simultaneously since Australian legend Rod Laver in 1969. Technically, it’s Sunday morning, and this runs until 3:30 a.m., with replays Sunday our time at 7 a.m. and 4 p.m.

College football: The Senior Bowl, 1 p.m., NFL Network:

Guys you may recognize in Mobile, Alabama: UCLA’s Kai Forbath and Christian Yount; plus USC’s Kristofer O’Dowd, Ronald Johnson and Shareece Wright.

MMA: Herschel Walker vs. Scott Carson, 10 p.m., Showtime:

Part of the Strikeforce card in San Jose, the 48-year-old former Heisman Trophy winner puts his 1-0 record on the line. It was originally scheduled for last month but postponed after Walker got a cut above his eye during training. up between Walker and Carson was originally scheduled for Dec. 4, but was postponed after Walker sustained a cut above his eye during a training session. Walker, with a fifth-degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do and training in Muay Thai and Kenpo, had a third-round TKO over someone name Greg Nagy almost a year ago. Carson (4-1), who lives in Gardena, is a longtime traininer partner of Chuck Liddell and trains in Lake Forest.

SUNDAY

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NBA: Lakers vs. Boston, Staples Center, 12:30 p.m., Channel 7:

One notable new face from the teams that faced off in last year’s NBA Final: The Celtics’ Shaquille O’Neal, who could be making his final Staples Center appearance. What’s left in the tank for the Aging Diesel? The other night, coming back from an abdominal strain, he scored 23 points (12 above his season average, hitting 10 of 12 from the floor), hit all three free throws, took five rebounds and blocked five shots in 35 minutes during a victory over the Bobcats. For a guy in his 19th season, and having played more than 1,200 regular season games, still carrying a career average of 23.8 points,10.9 rebounds and 147.4 kgs (that’s 325 pounds) is pretty remarkable.

NHL: All Star game in Raleigh, North Carolina, 1 p.m., Versus:

Carolina’s Eric Staal and Detroit’s Nicklas Lindstrom were voted captains by fellow all-stars — not Alex Ovechkin and Sidney Crosby — and they’ll pick the teams in a live fantasy draft on Friday (Versus, 5 p.m.), then play it out today. Not outdoors. Staal can either draft his little brother Marc, or snub him. The Sedin brothers could be split up. And who wants Crosby if he’s already laying the groundwork for skipping out on this exhibition? Anze Kopitar is waiting to find out.

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NFL: Pro Bowl in Honolulu, 4 p.m., Channel 11:

How did Matt Cassel become the leader of the AFC again?

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It’s all fun and games until Phil Shulman creates dead air at Dodger Stadium

Thanks to VinScullyIsMyHomeboy.com for coming up with the video on KTTV Channel 11’s “Good Day LA” attempt at one of those “reporter shows how easy it is” crash courses on the AMA Supercross track at Dodger Stadium:

Phil Shuman Crashes at Supercross: MyFoxLA.com

The Dodgers also posted a video they commissioned of Trey Canard taking a tour of the track with a “Go Pro” camera on his helmet (linked here).

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Ron Swanson’s Pyramid of Greatness

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It’s bigger than John Wooden’s Pyramid of Success, so it must be better.

It’s what Ron Swanson pulled out to show his new youth league basketball team that he was forced to coach in the season 2 debut episode of the NBC sit-com “Parks and Rec” on Thursday.

If you can’t read all of it because of the size we’re limited here, we’ll provide some of the highlights:

== The top square is “HONOR: If you need it defined, you don’t have it.”

== Under that: “BUFFETS: Whenever available, choose quantity over quality.” To its left: “AMERICA: The only country that matters. If you want to experience other ‘cultures,’ use an atlas or a ham radio.”

== Fifth row down far left is “DISCIPLINE: The ability to repeat a boring thing over and over again.” Far right is “SKIM MILK: That’s right. It’s on here twice. Avoid it.”

== Third row up from the bottom includes “INTENSITY: Give 100%. 110% is impossible. Only idiots recommend that.” And “OLD WOODEN SAILING SHIPS: They’re beautiful.” (Maybe that’s a tribute to John Wooden). And “B.O.: Cultivating a manly musk puts your opponents on notice.”

== Second row up has “FRIENDS: One to three is sufficient.” And “PERSPIRATION: Only sweat during physical activity or love making. No emotional sweating.” And “CRYING: Acceptable at funerals and the Grand Canyon.”

== And the foundation row includes “CAPITALISM: God’s way of determining who is smart, and who is poor.” And “POISE: Sting like a bee. Don’t float like a butterfly. That’s ridiculous.” And “HANDSHAKES: Firm. Dry. Solid. 3 seconds.” And “BODY GROOMING: Only women shave below their neck.”

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