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By Compiled from Times wires

© St. Petersburg Times, published September 18, 2000

Pirate manager Lamont reportedly on way out

PITTSBURGH -- Pirates manager Gene Lamont has been told he will be out of a job when his contract expires after this season, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported Sunday.

Pirates owner Kevin McClatchy has told Lamont that he won't be rehired as manager when the season ends, the newspaper said.

"The best way to handle that is to not talk about it now," Lamont said after Sunday's 5-3 loss to Houston. "There will be a time to talk about it later."

Pittsburgh has lost nine in a row, its longest skid since a nine-game slump in 1985.

McClatchy declined to discuss the issue late Saturday.

"I'm going to tell you the same thing I've said all year," McClatchy said. "I will address this situation at the end of the season. Any discussions between Gene and myself are just that -- confidential. I'll comment on the status of the manager at the end of the season."

Lamont also declined to discuss whether McClatchy told him he would not return next season.

In June, McClatchy announced that Lamont would finish the season as manager, saying he would not be a scapegoat for the team's poor performance.

YANKEES: The ironic part about Jose Canseco's awful day in right field Sunday was that he asked for it. He told Joe Torre after joining the Yankees from the Devil Rays this season that he'd be willing to play the outfield. Torre appreciated that. After Sunday, however, Canseco may have to reconsider. "I may not volunteer any more," he said with a smile. Canseco made two errors, one a fumbled pickup and the other a misplayed fly ball, in Cleveland's 15-4 rout at Yankee Stadium. He was booed. He was cheered -- for getting out of Bernie Williams' way when the Gold Glove centerfielder waved him away from a fly ball in the fifth inning, one batter after the botched fly ball. The afternoon was a course in baseball humility.

BLUE JAYS: Right-hander Joey Hamilton left the game against Chicago after three innings because of a strained right shoulder. Hamilton went to the mound to start the fourth inning. Manager Jim Fregosi then went to the mound to talk to the pitcher, who made a few warmup throws before leaving.

ORIOLES: Pitcher Mike Mussina went through his usual pre-game treatments for a strained groin muscle that has kept him in the trainer's room for the past three weeks. It's still unknown whether he'll make Friday's start.

PADRES: The team agreed to a five-year, $2.85-million contract with second-round draft pick Xavier Nady. The deal includes a $1.1-million signing bonus spread across several years, and a four-year contract worth $1.75-million, according to general manager Kevin Towers. If Nady, a third baseman, reaches the majors in 2002-2004, additional bonuses could kick in. Towers said it was the first time the club has awarded a major-league contract to a draft pick. Nady is expected to be placed on the active roster when the club begins its final homestand Sept. 26. To make room on the 40-man roster, catcher George Williams was designated for assignment.

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