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California Dreamin'

By MARC TOPKIN, Times Staff Writer

© St. Petersburg Times
published October 28, 2002

PUNCHOUT: Some teams have plush clubhouses. Some offer luxurious amenities such as a team masseuse. The Angels' special edge? A huge punching bag in the tunnel behind their dugout. It actually has been there since 1988, installed by then-manager Cookie Rojas to give the players an outlet for their frustration. "If you hear it going, you don't want to go back in there," trainer Ned Bergert said.

HOW'S HE LOOK IN TIGHTS?: We're not sure how it came up, but Giants manager Dusty Baker revealed some deep personal details that may explain his media-friendly attitude. "Clark Kent was my hero," Baker said. "He was a journalist by day and Superman when there was trouble. I didn't want to be Jimmy Olsen. Superman was always getting him out of trouble."

BE BOLD: The Giants apparently weren't that confident of winning Game 6 on Saturday: They didn't check out of their Anaheim hotel.

MAKING A PITCH: Jim Abbott, who pitched despite having one hand, threw the ceremonial first pitch. ... Melissa Etheridge sang the national anthem. Actor Wayne Brady sang God Bless America.

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