The Jackson Sun from Jackson, Tennessee on August 22, 1998 · 21
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The Jackson Sun from Jackson, Tennessee · 21

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Jackson, Tennessee
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Saturday, August 22, 1998
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21
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Saturday, Aug. 22, 1998 DIAMOND JAXXAUTO RACING The Jackson SunPage 3C p d-'a f v ? 'f f v f f . V V if " y t t 'f V t V v V v t t y t SOUTHERN LEAGUE STANDINGS Second Half ends Sept 7 Western Division W L Pet GB L1Q Str 'Mobile (Padres) 34 20 .630 - 6-4 W-2 Chattanooga (Reds) 29 23 .558 4 5-5 L-2 Huntsville(A's) 25 29 .463 9 64 W-2 JAXX (Cubs) 22 32 .407 12 '3-7 L-1 Birmingham (While Sox) 22 32 .407 12 3-7 L-6 Eastern Division Knoxville (Blue Jays) 29 25 .537 - 5-5 W-1 Jacksonville (Tigers) 28 26 .519 1 7-3 W-1 Orlando (Mariners) 26 25 .510 Vh 5-5 L-1 'Greenville (Braves) 27 27 .500 2 64 W-4 Carolina (Pirales) 25 28 .472 3Vi- 4-6 L-2 '-won first half Friday's Results Jacksonville 2, JAXX 1 Hunstville 6, Chattanooga 3 Greenvile 7, Birmingham 4 Mobile 1 0, Carolina 9 (1 2) Today's Games JAXX at Greenville, 6:15 p.m. Mobile at Chattanooga, 6 p.m. Birmingham at Knoxville Huntsville at Orlando, 6 p.m. Jacksonville at Carolina Sunday's Games JAXX at Greenville, 4:15 p.m. Mobile at Chattanooga, noon Knoxville at Birmingham Huntsville at Orlando, 5 p.m. Jacksonville at Carolina Monday's Games JAXX at Greenville, 6:1 5 p.m Mobile at Chattanooga, 6 p.m. Knoxville at Birmingham Huntsville at Orlando, 6 p.m. Jacksonville at Carolina Tuesday's Games JAXX at Greenville, 6:15 p.m. Knoxville at Birmingham Jacksonville at Carolina Roster moves up By ROSS W. REILY The Jackson Sun No decision has been made on what the Iowa Cubs are going to do with the extra player they are carrying on the roster since Jose Nieves was sent down from the Cubs on Wednesday. The Triple-A team has several options, which include putting a player on the disabled list and sending no one down to the Diamond Jaxx. But the most likely scenario is that Kevin Castleberry or Kary Bridges will be sent down to the Jaxx, which will put the Jaxx in the same situation Iowa is in now. Vols' defensive line raises questions By CHRIS LOW The Tennessean KNOXVILLE - The Tennessee football team opened practice Aug. 14 with a defensive line that, on paper anyway, was as physically imposing as any the Vols have put on the field in a while. But as two-a-days conclude today with the first full scrimmage of the preseason, the outlook in the defensive interior is considerably more hazy. It starts with junior defensive tackle Billy Ratliff, whose surgically-repaired right knee has not responded well thus far. He's practiced just twice since the Vols started and has missed the last eight practices. He's yet to go through any contact work as stiffness in the knee continues to plague him. Tennessee coach Phillip Fulmer said Ratliff, wearing a large brace on his right knee, has been adamant about not wanting to give it up. "He knows there's no pressure for him to play ... from us, the trainers, the doctors, anybody," Fulmer said. "He just wants to play. You have to admire and respect his love and passion for the game." Notre Dame sees benefit to joining Big Ten From wire reports SOUTH BEND, Ind. - Notre Dame may be interested in Big Ten membership, after all. Notre Dame athletic director Michael Wadsworth told The Chicago Tribune that the school's change in outlook came after a meeting last week with conference officials. He said the improved financial picture may have led both sides past a stumbling block that could have ended negotiations. "I really don't think the big issue is going to be the money," Wadsworth told The Tribune in a story published Friday. Although discussions have focused on money, Wadsworth said other issues would determine whether the university will give Up more than a century of independent football status. The Big Ten is hoping to land Notre Dame as the 12th member of the conference. Wadsworth said an agreement with Big Ten officials prohibited him from disclosing any of the information shared by Notre Jason Ryan 3-11, 5.08 ERA G WILD CARD Western Division W L Pet GB Huntsville (A's) 64 69 .520 - JAXX (Cubs) 59 64 .479 5 JAXX 5, Suns 2 JAXX JCKSNVH1E brhbt 3 0 10 Macas2b 4 0 0 0 Barkeret 3 0 0 0 Fickc 4 0 0 0 Kapteirt Meyers 2b Porter cf Freeman H Zuleta 1b Nunez dh McNabb ph Nelson 3b Brown il Molina c Frkrwyss McNicholp 2 0 0 0 VMobos3b4 0 1 0 1 0 0 0 Freire lb 2 0 0 0 4 12 0 Ibarra 4 0 0 0 HemaizH 3 0 11 Mitten ss 3 0 10 Darwin p 0 0 0 0 FWiusp Skosep 31 1 5 1 Totals Total JAXX 010 000 Sunt E-Fk. Darwin DP-Suns 2 LOB-JAXX 6. Suns 10. 2B-Madas. ViaJobos. Hemaiz. SB-Meyers 2. Nelson. IP H RER BB SO JAXX Mobile at Chattanooga, 6 p.m. Huntsville at Orlando, 6 p.m. McNktioIL.12-7 8 Jdutnville Darwin W. 12-5 7 Hdjus 1 Both Bridges and Castleberry played for the Jaxx earlier in the season, and both hit near .300 in their time in Jackson. Jaxx manager Dave Trembley said he expects farm director David Wilder to make a decision very soon. Most believe a decision will be made while the Jaxx are in Greenville for a four-game series with the Braves, which begins today. Garcia on the mend Another decision on the horizon is what to do when pitcher Al Garcia is activated off the disabled list. The right-hander who started the first game at Pringles Park He said the Vols are preparing for the season without Ratliff or senior defensive tackle Ron Green two of their most talented, and easily their most experienced tackles. Degenerative knee conditions will limit Green to maybe 12 or 15 snaps a game. Green received his first contact work of the preseason Wednesday afternoon and also looked sharp in Thursday's situational scrim-maee. He was Fulmer held out of both practices Friday. "Anything we get from those guys is going to be a plus," Fulmer said. "Whether it's 20, 30 or 40 snaps between the two, I don't know. We're not planning on anything. If we get it, then good." The one fixture at tackle has been junior Darwin Walker, the strongest player on the team. The danger with Walker would be playing him too many snaps and having him worn out in the fourth quarter. Senior Jeff Coleman has worked with the first team at the other tackle, but even he has been limited by chronic back problems. COLLEGE NOTEBOOK Dame and the conference. But he said more talks could lead to more specific discussions after the start of the year. The athletic director said he believes that a negotiation phase would not be lengthy because of the amount of information exchanged at the start of talks. Wadsworth said Notre Dame officials would evaluate the new information. The start of the academic year and the football season, which begins Sept. 5, could slow the process down. Florida GAINESVILLE, Fla. - The University of Florida has invited James McGriffs mother, Ernestine, along with other family members to the Sept. 5 season opener against The Citadel. The school plans to honor Mc-Griff, who drowned last spring and never got to play for the Ga Jamie Arnold 0-4, 4.73 ERA 6:15 p.m. - WNWS-FM 101 .5, WWEZ-FM 97.5 RACE Second Half ends Sept 7 Skuse 1 0 0 0 0 2 Umpires Home: Boberg. Firsl McCraw. Third Enckson. T-2 20 A-5.539. How they scored Here are how the runs scored in the game Friday between the Diamond Jaxx and the Jacksonville Suns at Wofrson Park: Diamond Jaxx second: Bryant Nelson, singled, stole second and scored on a Jose Molina single. ...Jaxxl. Suns 0. Jacksonville fifth: Juan Hemaiz singled and scored on a single by Jose Maaas. ... Jaw 1. SunsV Jacksonville sixth: Gabe Kapler walked and went to third on a double by Carlos ViHalooos. Aleiandro Freire was walked mtentjonary to load the bases. Kapler scored as Derrick MitcneU was walked to load the bases. ... Suns 2. Jaxx 1. Play of the game Diamond Jaxx center fielder Bo Porter lost a Carlos Vitelobos fly bat m the kgftts in the sixth rnrung The play turned into a double and moved Gabe Kapler to third where he eventually scored the winning run in a 2-1 victory for the Jacksonville Suns. abrhbi 4 0 2 1 3 0 0 0 4 0 10 3 110 4 0 0 0 4 12 0 3 0 11 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 31 28 2 000 000-1 011 001-2 2 2 4 the line may have O NOTEBOOK strained a tendon on the middle finger of his throwing hand and has not been available for several weeks. He threw in the bullpen on Wednesday and is expected back for the series with Greenville or when the Jaxx return home next week against the Knoxville Suns. Jimenez OK Relief pitcher Miguel Jiminez was given a good report after being taken out of Wednesday's game with pain in his throwing shoulder. Jaxx trainer Jim O'Reilly thinks After that, there's nobody else who's played in a game. At least, nobody who's healthy. Sophomore Kenny Smith, recovering from offseason shoulder surgery, has a ways to go before he gets back into any semblance of shape. Fulmer said that he hoped to get Smith back on the practice field within the next month, which wouldn't be in time for either Syracuse or Florida. One of the keys up front will be the development of redshirt freshman Fred Weary. He showed flashes of dominance last preseason before suffering a stress fracture in his foot. During the spring, Weary was still favoring his foot. He's had his moments thus far during two-a-days, but nothing like last preseason. The 6-foot-4, 280-pound Weary is working with the second team. As disappointing as John Henderson's failure to qualify was when it happened, it really stings now. The Vols could desperately use the 6-7, 300-pound freshman. Henderson will have to sit out as a partial qualifier. His strength and power have been something to behold on the practice field, and he's not even close to grasping the Vols' system or getting his technique down. tors after signing a letter of in tent out of Palm Bay High School. There will be a moment of silence for McGriff and his mother will also be honored prior to kickoff. About 10 family members and friends are expected to attend. Florida officials have kept close tabs on the McGriff family since James' death. Special-teams coach Lawson Holland, who recruited the running back-linebacker, has visited his mother three or four times in Brevard County since the funeral. Jerri Spurrier, the wife of Florida head coach Steve Spurrier, writes the McGriff family every week. "He is a part of the Gator family," Holland said. "He always will be." Mississippi State STARKVILLE, Miss. - Mississippi State defensive back Ashley Cooper will miss part of the season after injuring his shoulder in scrimmage. Cooper underwent arthroscopic Jaxx's on line By ROSS W. REILY The Jackson Sun Every game on the current 12-game road trip has been important to the Diamond Jaxx, but no four-game series has been more important than the one that begins today at Greenville, S.C. With an opportunity to take advantage of a poor starting pitching rotation and a worse relief corps, the Jaxx can put themselves right back in the thick of the playoff race with three victories against the Braves. The Jaxx enter the series four games behind Huntsville for the West Division wild-card position with 16 games remaining. They hope to shake off the effects of a 2-5 start to this road trip as they entered Friday's final game against Jacksonville. Greenville enters the series with the third best team ERA in the league (4.48), behind the Jaxx (3.99) and Mobile (4.03). But the Braves have lost their two best starters in recent weeks as Bruce Chen (13-7, 3.29) and Odaliz Perez (10 wins) have been promoted to the problem was fatigue and said there is no damage to the arm. Jimenez is expected back immediately. By the numbers If there is a candidate for the Jaxx's MVP in the last one-third of the season, it would have to be Julio Zuleta. The first baseman is batting .361 (30-for-83) since being called up a month ago and is 19 for his last 50 (.380) with six doubles. Bo Porter, though, may have made the case for the Jaxx's season MVP. The center fielder is hitting .298 with nine home runs and 63 RBIs. He leads the Southern Assuming Ratliff and Green can't go or play very little, the reality is that Reggie Ridley will probably have to step in and play right away. That's ready or not. Ridley, a 6-4, 270-pound freshman, has been working alongside Weary some with the second team. If it's not Ridley, then it could be senior walk-on Matt Goodin. "We're still looking for that fourth and fifth guy right now," Fulmer said. One other option is junior defensive end Shaun Ellis moving inside to play tackle, especially if junior college newcomer Roger Alexander keeps improving. The Vols played the 6-4, 275-pound Ellis at tackle some last season during passing situations and plan to do even more of that this season. Ellis, coming off a serious hip injury, has not had any setbacks and has yet to miss a practice. "Shaun was in incredible shape before the injury occurred," Fulmer said. Defensive coordinator John Chavis said he didn't want to get too excited too early about Ellis, but added, "He looks like Shaun Ellis to me. He still looks quick." shoulder surgery Friday and will need four to six weeks to recover, MSU medical personnel said. He had injured the shoulder in the Bulldogs' first two-a-day session of the fall and reinjured it during Thursday's scrimmage. He tore the cartilage surrounding the shoulder joint. The Copiah-Lincoln Community College transfer came to MSU in January and participated in the spring practice. He was running with the first defensive unit at the time of his injury. Cooper is not the only sidelined player. Reserve wide receiver Robbie Stillwell remained in Oktibbeha County Hospital Friday recovering from a concussion. His return to the practice field is still undetermined. Punter Jeff Walker missed Friday's workout with intestinal problems, and in limited action were nose guard Kenwoynne Smith (foot sprain) and wide receiver Harold Lindsey (groin). playoffs against MOM 24 GRN 6:15 HOME DAWAY GRN-Greenville Braves Calendars 4:15 KNX-Knoxville Smokies For Jaxx ticket information, call 664-2020 Triple-A Richmond. The only quality starter left is Micah Bowie (9-6, 3.63) who will go for the Braves on Tuesday. In between, the Braves will send two right-handers and one lefthander with a combined record of 6-13 and an average ERA of 5.83. Going for the Jaxx today will be right-hander Jason Ryan (3-11, 5.08), followed by Phil Norton, the man who is considered one of the top five prospects in the Chicago Cubs organization. Norton's record is only 5-5, but his ERA (3.16), ranks second in the league behind Mobile's Bryan Wolfe (2.32). Ryan will pitch against Jamie impact on Jaxx League in stolen bases (45) and triples (11). He also is among the league leaders in runs scored (84). Trembley might consider Buck McNabb leading off every day. McNabb, who has been relegated to a utility outfielder, is usually put in the leadoff spot when the team is in a slide. And it usually works. When McNabb is leading off, the Jaxx are 12-2 including a 5-2 victory against Jacksonville on Thursday, ending a five-game losing streak. McNabb is 14 for his last 37 (.378), Ray Nunez is quietly burning up the league. The utility third baseman is 19 for his last 47 (.404) Lepage surges past Jarrett for victory The Associated Press BRISTOL - Dale Jarrett dominated the Food City 250 before a red flag set up Kevin Lepage to take the lead with less than two laps left and win Friday night's crash- and fire-marred race at Bristol Motor Speedway. Jarrett took the lead on lap 115 and was about one-fourth of a lap up on the field when a nine-car wreck and subsequent fire brought out a red flag with less than 10 laps remaining, stopping the race for 26 minutes. When the race went back to green with four laps left, Lepage was second but surged past Jarrett down the backstretch on lap 248. Phil Parsons also passed Jarrett Gordon to start 7th in bid for history Continued from cover qualifiers were Ricky Rudd, Mark Martin, Jeremy Mayfield and Ted Musgrave. The big news, however, was Gordon, whose bid created an air of excitement in the garage area, where he has earned the respect of his peers by winning 37 times in just 177 starts on stock car racing's premier circuit. "It's almost like the Mark McGwire deal in baseball," said Larry McReynolds, the crew chief for Skinner. "If you dont strike him out, you kind of hope he does it and hits one out of the park." Gordon's chase of the record attracted an unusually large media contingent at Bristol, and to accommodate the demand, the track arranged for Gordon to appear for a late-morning news conference. The event drew such a large crowd at the infield media center that the doors were closed and secured by guards. Gordon spent much of the 45-minute session insisting it was business as usual for his team this weekend, but late in the news conference, he finally relented. "It certainly keeps me fired up," he said. "I love doing things that haven't been done before. It's really neat for the team and everybody to be a part of something like that." Gordon is the seventh driver with a shot at five consecutive victories in the modern era, which hopes Braves 3 TIIF WRI THII FM 8AT 22 GRN 6:15 KNX KNX KNX 7"0S U 7:05 1 1 7:05 25 GRN 6:15 run 'open? RADIO: WNWS-FM 101.5. WWEZ-FM 97.5 Arnold (0-4, 4.73). Norton will face Kevin McGlinchy (1-1, 7.00). Earl Byrne (4-4, 5.53) will take the hill Monday for the Jaxx against left-hander Ryan Jacobs (5-8, 5.76). The final game of the series could be the most interesting as Courtney Duncan (6-8, 4.23), 2-0 with a 1.82 ERA in his last six starts, goes against Bowie. The Jaxx return home Thursday for their final home series, a four-game set against East Division-leader Knoxville. The final home game of the season is Aug. 30. Approximately 2,000 tickets remain for that game. with three home runs, six doubles and 16 RBIs. For the season, Nunez is batting .316 with seven home runs and 44 RBIs. Ricky Freeman has certainly enjoyed his time playing against Jacksonville. Freeman, who had struggled with his hitting of late, was 4-for-8 with five walks against Jacksonville heading into Friday's finale. Six of his 12 homers and 21 of his 71 RBIs have also come against the Suns in the 15 games played between the teams. Utility player John Cotton continues to play well for the Jaxx as well. The left-hander is 18 for his last 43 (.418) with two home runs and two triples. before they took the white flag. There's nothing to say. My car just didn't run good on cold tires," Jarrett said. "To come out on top after a tough night like this means a lot," said Lepage, whose only other Busch Grand National victory came in November 1996 at Homestead, Fla. Lepage, Parsons and Jarrett were among the survivors of 10 wrecks that reduced a 43-car starting grid to just 20 competitors. The only reported injury involved Tony Stewart, who said he got the wind knocked out of him during the final wreck. He was taken to a hospital for tests. Results, 2C. began in 1972 when NASCAR consolidated the schedule and set up a points system. The six who tried before him and failed represent a cross-section of the sport's biggest names: Cale Yarborough in 1976, Darrell Wal-trip in 1981, Dale Earnhardt in 1987, Harry Gant in 1991, Bill Elliott in 1992 and Martin in 1993. For Gordon to do what they were unable to accomplish, he knows his biggest job will be to stay out of trouble. "Tempers can flare instantly here, so what you've got to do is always be able to control that," he said. "And I think guys who can control it and are patient enough can come out of here with a good finish." A track-record crowd of about 140,000 is expected to be on hand to Bee if that finish is good enough to put him in the record books. The Oasis Spa Relaxing Body Shampoo? 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