Names In The Game
The Associated Press
Sep. 19, 1996
CLEVELAND (AP) _ WAHOO!! Bring on the World Series!
That was the cry of Cleveland Indians fans Wednesday as they cheered the team's second straight AL Central Division title. The 9-4 victory Tuesday over the Chicago White Sox is the first step on the way back to the World Series. Cleveland lost in six games to the Atlanta Braves in last year's series.
``We expected them to bring home the championship, and we are behind them 100 percent,'' said Bob Smetana, 28, who brought his 4-year-old son, Bryce, to Jacobs Field for a glimpse of the Indians' home field.
Such Indians pride, which is never hard to find in Cleveland, spilled across the city and beyond Wednesday.
Banners with team mascot Chief Wahoo hung in store windows, and advertisements in morning newspapers congratulated the team. Gov. George Voinovich _ formerly Cleveland's mayor _ joined the celebration, donning a Wahoo cap and raising the team flag at the Statehouse.
``I have every reason to believe we'll have another Ohio team in the World Series,'' he said.
Mayor Michael R. White declared Friday ``Team Spirit Day'' and encouraged fans to wear their best Indians gear or at least the red, white and blue team colors.
Fans agreed only one thing would have made Tuesday's win a bit sweeter: if it were at Jacobs Field instead of Comiskey Park.
``I thought last night's game was great, but I wish they had done it at home,'' said Scott Welsh, 26, who stood in a long line at the Jacobs Field shop to buy an Indians cap.
``My message to the team for the playoffs is `Good luck, and win it all,''' he said.
TORONTO (AP) _ Donovan Bailey had a hug for his daughter, a kiss for his girlfriend and a couple of barbs for some cocky Americans.
Back in Canada for the first time since his record-setting 100-meter run at the Atlanta Olympics, Bailey plans to catch up on some quality time with his 2-year-old daughter, Adrienna, and her mother, Michelle Mullin.
Next spring, however, he's got Michael Johnson and the United States in his sights with a 150-meter showdown for the mythical title of World's Fastest Man on the line.
``I'm the fastest person in the world, I call the shots,'' said Bailey, who was greeted by about 100 people when he finished a grueling Osaka-Vancouver-Toronto trek about 45 minutes late Wednesday night.
``It will be next year, not this year and when I do, he's going to be really sorry.''
Much has been made about Johnson being the fastest man in the world after his 19.32 seconds record-run in the Olympic 200. But Bailey, who established a 100-meter mark of 9.84 in his gold-medal dash, makes no bones about the sprinting pecking order.
``The claim is from Michael Johnson and he's not even the fastest man in Texas,'' said Bailey, who trains in Austin while Johnson hails from Dallas.
``I think the American media was trying to make a superstar out of one of their athletes. There are two glamor events at the Olympics that combine speed and power _ the 100 meters and the 400-meter relay. We smoked them in both of them.''
Bailey also said he has some improvements to make as a sprinter. He said it won't be hard to avoid complacency despite holding the world record.
``I've always motivated myself by thinking I haven't run a perfect race and that still motivates me,'' said Bailey, who added he might run a couple of 200-meter races next season. ``There's still some things to be worked on.''
LOS ANGELES (AP) _ The Sakura restaurant has been behind the Los Angeles Dodgers since last year, offering a $1 discount on kake udon, a noodle soup, every time the baseball team won.
Sakura manager Mickey Ohkita admits he wasn't much of a fan during most of his nine years in Southern California _ until Hideo Nomo came to town.
On Wednesday, a day after the Dodgers pitcher threw a no-hitter against the Colorado Rockies, workers at Sakura saw an enthusiastic lunch line.
``THE DAY AFTER EVERY DODGERS VICTORY, SAKURA WILL DISCOUNT KAKE UDON FROM $2.60 TO $1.60!! LET'S SUPPORT OUR L.A. DODGERS!!'' a sign says.
The foodstand is tucked in a corner of a department store in downtown's Little Tokyo. A pair of workers wearing blue Dodgers caps served customers.
Marie Yamamoto, of West Los Angeles, and her friend, Fukue Oshiro, of Los Angeles, ordered sandwiches instead of their usual Dodger soup special.
Though she isn't much of a baseball fan, she knows Nomo.
``I was really happy for him,'' Yamamoto said. ``Watching him grow this past year was great. I'm very proud of him.''
And the soup?
``It's OK,'' Yamamoto said, ``but eating the same thing over and over again, you get tired of it.''