Compiled from Times wires
© St. Petersburg Times, published November 26, 2000
Agent Scott Boras angrily disputed a report in Saturday's editions of the New York Daily News in which a longtime associate of free agent Alex Rodriguez said the shortstop does not like Atlanta and might feel uncomfortable playing in southern surroundings.
Boras took particular offense at the unnamed associate's characterization of the Braves locker room as "a jeans-and-boots clubhouse" that might not provide a comfortable environment for Rodriguez, whom the associate described as "an Armani guy." Boras, who represents Braves stars Greg Maddux and Andruw Jones, mentioned them as evidence that the Braves are a progressive club.
Boras said eight clubs are in the running for Rodriguez, expected to command $20-million annually.
MORE BASEBALL: Reliever John Franco re-signed with the Mets for $10.5-million over three years. The 40-year-old left-hander said he felt the chance of winning the World Series was better with New York than with Philadelphia, which offered him a closer's role and a chance at Lee Smith's record 478 saves. Franco has 420.
Kristina Koznick of Burnsville, Minn., placed third in 1:24.12.
Ertl clocked 42.55 seconds in the second run to momentarily take the lead with a combined time of 1:24.03 seconds.
Kostelic, who tore four ligaments in her right knee in downhill training in December, responded with a run of 42.75 seconds for an aggregate of 1:23.19.
Kostelic, 18, won the season-opening slalom last week in Park City, Utah, beating Ertl by 1.73 seconds. "I didn't expect this. This was my season just to stay healthy. I don't really have any goals for this year -- just to stay healthy."
MORE SKIING: Stephan Eberharter of Austria won a World Cup downhill race in 1:40.79 seconds at Lake Louise, Alberta. Sylvano Beltrametti of Switzerland finished second and Lasse Kjus of Norway was third. ... Roar Ljoekelsoy led Norway to victory in the ski jumping World Cup at Kuopio, Finland. Austria finished second, and Finland was third. ... Odd Bjorn Hjelmeseth led Norwegians in a sweep of the first seven places in the opening World Cup cross-country races at Beitostolen, Norway. Defending overall champion Bente Skari won the women's 10K in 26:30.2.
AUTOS: Tony Stewart, 29, who led the Winston Cup circuit with six victories this season, got one in a USAC midget, winning the Turney Night Grand Prix at Irwindale Speedway in California.
HORSES: Bettors wagered a record $160,512,766 on races at Churchill Downs this fall, a 7.2 percent increase from last year's record $149,719,697. Most of the wagering was done at other racetracks and wagering centers throughout North America. El Corredor won the $500,000 Cigar Mile at New York's Aqueduct, 13/4 lengths ahead of Peeping Tom, to earn $300,000. Two Item Limit won by 7 lengths in the Demoiselle for 2-year-old fillies, earning $120,000. Windsor Castle won the Remsen, earning $120,000. Long shot Charge d'Affaires won the $500,000 Citation Handicap by a nose at Hollywood Park in California, earning $300,000. Mystic Lady won the $100,000 Hollywood Wildcat Stakes by 131/2 lengths at Calder. Miss Pickums beat Nasty Storm in the $223,200 Grade II Golden Rod for 2-year-old fillies at Churchill Downs, earning $138,384.
GOLF: Sergio Garcia made two birdie putts to win four skins and $150,000 on the first day of the Skins Game at Indio, Calif. Colin Montgomerie won three skins for $75,000, and Vijay Singh took one skin for $50,000. Three-time winner Fred Couples captured one skin and $25,000. ... Robert Allenby shot 8-under 64 for a one-stroke lead over Aaron Baddeley in the Australian Open.
LUGE: Germans dominated at the World Cup in Sigulda, Latvia, with Steffen Skel and Steffen Woller winning the men's doubles with a two-run combined time of 1:26.279 seconds. Americans Mark Grimmette and Brian Martin, bronze-medal winners in the 1998 Olympics, were third.
PREPS: Tyler Ebell broke the California rushing record with 3,899 yards this season. Ebell has committed to UCLA.
RUNNING: Matt Downin won the 10K national cross-country championship in 29 minutes, 1 second. His brother, Andy, finished seventh, helping Wisconsin Runner win the team title in Boston. Kim Fitchen won the women's 6K race in 20:04, with the Boston Athletic Association winning the women's competition. Thomas Dalton won the men's masters division in 30:48, and Susan LaChance won in 37:48.
SKATING: Alexei Yagudin scored three 6.0s to win the men's singles title at the Lalique Trophy in Paris. Second was Frenchman Stanick Jeannette. Former world champion Maria Butyrskaya took the women's championship. Yelena Berezhnaya and Anton Sikharulidze won the pairs title. ... Gunda Niemann-Stirnemann of Germany won the women's 5,000-meter event and set a World Cup speed skating record of 6 minutes, 55.34 seconds at Heerenveen, Netherlands. Niemann-Stirnemann finished eight seconds ahead of Anni Friesinger of Germany. Maki Tabata was third. The Dutch swept the men's 1,500, with Erben Wennemars winning in 1:47.52.
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