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It’s showtime again in LA as the world’s highest-priced sports team are closing in on their first appearance in the World Series for 25 years

Friday Book: Selling out the big game

THOSE DAMN YANKEES: THE SECRET LIFE OF AMERICA'S GREATEST FRANCHISE BY DEAN CHADWIN, VERSO, pounds 20

Obituary: Eddie Stanky

NICKNAMES, AFFECTIONATE and otherwise, have been common in baseball since before the turn of the century.

TODAY'S NUMBER 20

TODAY'S

Baseball: Soaring salaries pile on pressure

After the Year of the Bat, hopes are high for the new baseball season.

TODAY'S NUMBER: 28,600

TODAY'S

Baseball: Johnson loses Blue Jays job

TIM JOHNSON, the manager of the Toronto Blue Jays, yesterday had his US major league baseball career derailed after he lied about his military service in Vietnam. He was about to start his second year with the Jays, but has been fired by the American League team and replaced by the veteran Jim Fregosi.

Essay: He was elegant and mysterious - and he didn't talk much

David Thomson honours the memory of Joe DiMaggio (left), a graceful hitter, a loyal ex-husband, and the greatest Yankee of them all

Baseball: Brown strikes it rich

KEVIN BROWN yesterday became baseball's first $100m man, by signing a seven-year $105m (pounds 63m) contract with the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Baseball: Clinton law to benefit players

PRESIDENT CLINTON signed a bill on Tuesday which overturns part of US Major League baseball's 70-year-old anti-trust exemption, putting baseball on a par with other professional US sports on labour matters.

Baseball: World Series in TV ratings flop

The World Series championship that ended in the early hours of Thursday morning drew the lowest television audiences on record.

Baseball: Braves in trouble as Brown strikes form

THE SAN Diego pitcher, Kevin Brown, dominated the Atlanta Braves with a three-hitter as the Padres beat the hosts 3-0 to go two up in the National League Championship Series.

Baseball: Cubs are tamed by Smoltz

THE CHICAGO Cubs found out that regular-season dominance means little once the play-offs start. Atlanta's John Smoltz dominated the Cubs on Wednesday in a 7-1 victory, breaking the Braves' five-game losing streak against Chicago.

Baseball: McGwire's 70 surpasses his dreams

MARK McGWIRE yesterday admitted that he was confounded by his achievement in reaching the mark of 70 home runs in a season as he celebrated in style. "I can't believe I did it. It's absolutely amazing," McGwire said. "It blows me away. Reaching the 70 plateau - I never, ever thought about it."

Baseball: McGwire takes his record up to 70

MARK MCGWIRE swung his way into baseball history yesterday, racking up an astonishing 70 home runs to break the single season record. Indeed, he eclipsed it: Roger Maris managed 61 back in 1961, a record that took 37 years to break but which hardly troubled McGwire.

Baseball: McGwire homing in on run record

MARK McGWIRE, of the St Louis Cardinals, smashed two home runs on Saturday, almost guaranteeing himself ownership of baseball's hallowed single-season record of long balls.
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