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Doctor: Bell's growth cancerous, but he's fine

Compiled from Times wires
Published September 29, 2006


A surgically removed growth behind Royals manager Buddy Bell's left tonsil was cancerous, his doctor said Thursday.

But the biopsy revealed that tissue surrounding the growth was free of cancer cells. The team made the announcement during Kansas City's game at Minnesota.

Bell was examined by Dr. Michael Hinni at the Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, Ariz., after surgery he had Sept. 22. Hinni said the procedure was successful.

Bell, who is resting at his home in Chandler, Ariz., and won't manage again this season, plans to meet with doctors soon to determine any possible further treatment.

THE HEAT IS ON: How hot are the Dodgers?

They are so hot that, on Wednesday night, one of their best players was on fire.

"Literally," Derek Lowe said.

For all the silliness they survived in a 19-11 win over the Rockies on Thursday, nothing compared to the incident 18 hours earlier, when Lowe accidentally set his pants ablaze in the dugout.

"Craziest thing I've ever seen," manager Grady Little said.

In the top of the fifth inning, Lowe was standing in the dugout preparing to step into the on-deck circle. Next to his right leg was a space heater.

Lowe was so intent on watching the game that he didn't feel the heat or smell the smoke. Then teammate Matt Kemp saw his polyester pants leg burning and cried out.

"He said, 'Dude, you're on fire,' "Lowe recalled. At first, Lowe thought he was just being complimented on his pitching. "Then he said, 'Literally,' " Lowe said.

Lowe jumped away from the heater and the flames subsided but not before the fire had burned holes in his pants and socks.

With his teammates in stitches, Lowe ran into the tunnel and changed into a new pair of pants. Lowe was uninjured and finished his six innings for the 100th victory of his career.

He autographed the toasted pants as a memento.

VETERANS BALLOT: Gil Hodges, Ron Santo, Tony Oliva and Jim Kaat are among 27 players on next year's Veterans Committee ballot for the Hall of Fame. Umpire Doug Harvey, former Dodgers owner Walter O'Malley and former union chief Marvin Miller are among 15 managers, executives and umpires on the 15-man "composite" ballot.

No one received the required 75 percent in the first two votes by the Veterans Committee, held in 2003 and 2005. In the most recent vote, Hodges and Santo received 65 percent, falling eight votes shy. Oliva and Kaat were the only others to be picked on more than half the ballots.

In the composite vote, held every four years, Harvey received 48 votes in 2003, falling 12 short.

Results will be announced Feb. 27.

Four players were added to the ballot: Lefty O'Doul, Al Oliver, Cecil Travis and Mickey Vernon. Two were dropped: Elston Howard and Smoky Joe Wood.

Holdovers include Dick Allen, Bobby Bonds, Ken Boyer, Rocky Colavito, Wes Ferrell, Curt Flood, Joe Gordon, Mickey Lolich, Sparky Lyle, Roger Maris, Marty Marion, Carl Mays, Minnie Minoso, Thurman Munson, Don Newcombe, Vada Pinson, Luis Tiant, Joe Torre and Maury Wills.

BREWERS: Batting coach Butch Wynegar and first-base coach Dave Nelson will not be offered contracts for next year, the team said.

MARINERS: General manager Bill Bavasi and manager Mike Hargrove will return next season, the team said.