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Detroit Free Press from Detroit, Michigan • Page 27

Location:
Detroit, Michigan
Issue Date:
Page:
27
Extracted Article Text (OCR)

SIIOCKIDOUBLE-OT LOSERS, 104-94 Utah holds ofFDetroit (5-7) and Sandy WEDNESDAY July 7, 1999 Tour de France 2 Hockey 5 Scoreboard 6 ON THE WEB www.freep.com cronaeno ciuo-recora 33 points, pace 2d. phone 313-222-6660 Section fi ttw 11 ii 11 Li 1 IU Ullll Hanauer enjoying his second lap rw ijHnmur -r Respite has restored hydro racer's passion By ERIC SHARP FREE PRESS SPORTS WRITER myself my personality, my self-esteem was as a boat racer. "When I quit, frankly, I was scared. I wasn't too worried about finances. I've always been a saver.

But what would I do? Who would I be? "A friend and I started a couple of businesses, and they worked out well. And I do a TV show called 'How-To Outdoors' that was picked up nationally and is now in 14 countries. I'm real big in Japan." He laughed. "Even more important, I learned to play will be just a breathy rasp. But for the moment he is able to talk easily about returning to racing after a three-year break, the things he discovered about himself in a temporary retirement, and his new attitude toward a career that could see him surpass the late Bill Muncey's all-time winning record before the 1999 season ends.

"Boat racing was my life," said Hanauer, who this weekend will try on the Detroit River to pilot Miss Pico to his 11th Gold Cup. "Not only was it the way I made my living, it was too much of RIPPIN' ON THE RIVER What Spirit of Detroit Thunderfest. When: Thursday-Sunday. Where: Detroit River, off Belle Isle. Radio: WWJ-AM (950).

Schedule: Thursday and Friday Testing and qualifying, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday Testing and heats, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday Testing and heats, 8 a.m.-3 p.m.; APBA Gold Cup, 3:1 0 p.m. Details at www.thunderfest.com Tickets: Many packages available. Call 800-359-7760 or Ticketmaster at 248-645-6666.

Chip Hanauer's voice is, if not normal, at least strong. The most successful living unlimited hydroplane driver is enjoying what he calls "the sweet spot" of his vocal abilities after an injection of botulism toxin into his throat to treat a condition called spasmodic disphonia. A month from now the voice KEVIN SWAN ('Special to the Free Press Chip Hanauer, at 45, is back where he was 10 years ago driving Miss Pico, and chasing his former boat, Miss Bud. Please see HANAUER, Page 5D aster aw, 7 LL JL VAA Tigers lose to Yankees in 10, but show fight Tigers' lone All-Star will be catcher Ausmus By JOHN LOWE FREE PRESS SPORTS WRITER By JOHN LOWE FREE PRESS SPORTS WRITER Oh I Third-base coach Lance Parrish told the Tigers they needed heart and fire. Maybe they have found The Tigers this season often have seemed to lack spirit especially comeback spirit.

Maybe Tuesday night showed that they have found it. "We gave up six in the second, but we didn't roll over and die, and that to me is the most important turnaround in a long time," reliever Doug Brocail said after the Tigers mounted three comebacks to force extra innings. "I'll take that battle every night the rest of the year, and we're going to win a bunch of ball-games. "We had the go-get-'em attitude. The best closer is out on the mound." It was 8-4 when that closer, New York's Mariano Rivera, arrived with two runners aboard in the eighth.

The Tigers scored three DREW SHARP i Reliever Todd Jones gave up Chili Davis' one-out RBI in the 10th. times in that inning, and then Bobby Higginson tied it with a two-out homer off Rivera in the ninth. It was the first homer Rivera has allowed since August, and the first time this season the Tigers have tied a game on their final at-bat. The Yankees won in the 10th, 9-8, on Chili Davis' one-out RBI single Tigers catcher Brad Ausmus, who has a tremendous reverence for Boston's Fenway Park)' will be there next week for a special occasion: the All-Star Game. Ausmus has been chosen as the Tigers' only All-Star, the Free Press has learned.

His selection is due to be formally announced today, when both leagues unveil their non-starters and pitchers for the game next Tuesday night. Ausmus, who grew up in Connecticut, saw his big-league baseball as a kid when he made trips to Fenway Park. His mom grew up about 10 minutes from Fenway Park in the suburb of Brookline; her parents still live there. Now, in the park where he watched his first big-league game in 1976, he will an Ail-Star for the first time in his seven-year career. Ausmus, one of the majors' best defensive catchers, entered Tuesday having thrown out 36 percent of aspiring base stealers, the second-highest percentage in the American League behind former Tiger John Flaherty of Tampa Bay.

Ausmus didn't make his second error of the season until Tuesday night. He's hitting .274 with seven homers and 33 RBIs. And he had two triples Tuesday night giving him four for the season, all of them stand-up. Not bad for a catcher. An All-Star catcher.

Please see TIGERS, Page 3D Higginson's magic moment dissolves without a trace If, IF YOU believe in fairy tales and silver linings, then that one majestic moment might be enough to make you forget the dozens of NATIONAL PASTIME San Diego's Tony Gwynn is on the disabled list but might be activated to play in his 15th All-Star Game, which will be next Tuesday at Fenway Park. The NL starters: innings. It's not supposed to matter that the Tigers eventually lost, 9-8, in 10 innings, right? What's important is that a team whose heart was questioned against lowly Minnesota played tough against the defending World Series champions, right? Wrong. Desire was never a problem when the opposition assumed a much higher profile, but discipline has been a nightly concern. How many games has questionable base-running cost this team? Damion Easley's sixth-inning blunder left us once again wondering what these guys are wearing on the front of their uniforms anyway.

TW 'V' maddening mistakes that have turned the Tigers into baseball's biggest situation comedy this season. A 3-2 count with two out and the home team trailing by one. A struggling Bobby Higginson knew what was coming from New York Yankees closer Mariano Rivera. But could he turn on it? Oh, yes. He deposited a Rivera fastball into the upper deck to send the first game of the Yankees' last visit to Tiger Stadium into extra RUNNER-UP Jason Kendall 1B Jeff Bagwell 2B Craig Biggio 3B Chipper Jones SS Rey Ordonez OF Barry Bonds OF Raul Mondesi OF Steve Finley Photos Dy JULIAN H.

GONZALtZOetroit F-ree Press STARTER Mike Piazza Mark McGwire "Jay Bell Matt Williams i Barry Larkin Sammy Sosa Larry Walker Tony Gwynn Details, Pages 4-5D. BOBBY HIGGINSON, on his game-tying ninth-inning homer: "1 felt like two months of frustration was lifted off my back right there, because it was a home run, and it was a good swing I don't know the last time I hit a ball like that." Please see SHARP, Page 3D He's got Rising star: Wings high on Fischer r-r-t rospectgets rave everything you want in a player excellent size, mobility, great character" Wings iopp reviews on and office By HELENE ST. JAMES FREE PRESS SPORTS WRITER assistant tremely polite, speaks three languages, and insisted on completing his education even though it has meant spending two summer vacations in a classroom. "I have never given anything up," Fischer said. "I think if I give one thing up, then come another one, another one, another one.

If I never give up anything I'll never do it, so that's why I fin- defensive prospect, stands 6-feet-5 without skates and weighs 220 pounds, can cover the length of the rink in something like three strides, has a bazooka shot and fists to match. And he's only 18. Along with fellow defenseman Jesse Wallin, Fischer is the core of the Wings' future. And, pending training camp in September, he likely will remain in Detroit next season to begin what could be an elite NHL career. "We're very, very high on him," assistant general manager Jim Nill said of Fischer, who spent the past five days at a mini-training camp in Troy.

"He's our top prospect. He's got everything you want in a player excellent size, mobility, great character. He's our future investment." Fischer, a native of Beroun, Czech Republic, is a delightful package deal along with tremendous hockey skills, he is ex manager Jim Nill said of Jiri Fischer. srX The first thing that stands out about Jiri Fischer is his size, which is huge. Then the fact that he seemingly has no downside, on or off the ice.

Fischer, the Red Wings' prize KIRTHMON F. DOZIER I Detroit Free Press Please see WINGS, Page 5D.

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