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Around The Camps

Emotions mixed on day of deal

By MIKE READLING, TIMES WIRES

© St. Petersburg Times, published February 19, 1999


TAMPA -- Seemingly lost Thursday in the hype surrounding the David Wells-for-Roger Clemens trade was the first official day of spring training for the world champions.

"With all that happened this morning, the first day of spring training lost a little bit of the luster," Yankees manager Joe Torre said, referring to the trade of Wells, Graeme Lloyd and Homer Bush to the Blue Jays.

What they got in return -- five-time Cy Young Award winner Clemens -- should help restore a little of that excitement.

"I'm excited," pitcher Andy Pettitte said. "(Clemens) has been an idol of mine. We're both from Texas, went to the same junior college. I think this is going to be neat."

Clemens is expected to join the team this weekend, Torre said.

STEINBRENNER MATURING?: The thing that finally put the deal over was New York didn't have to give up its younger players. Wells is 35 and Lloyd 31, and Bush is 26 but probably wasn't going to see a lot of playing time.

"Twenty years ago I would have probably just said, "Go out and get him, I don't care what they want,' " Yankees principal owner George Steinbrenner said. "But I've gotten smarter. I think."

WHAT'S MY NUMBER?: Although Clemens has always worn No. 21, it appears that streak might be over.

OF Paul O'Neill wears 21, and Clemens said he isn't considering trying to wrestle it away.

"Paul is one of the captains over there and that's his number," Clemens said. "So, from what I hear, they're going to put me in No. 12. But it doesn't matter, we're going to go get them."

RIVERA WINS CASE: Mariano Rivera made it 2-0 for Yankees players in salary arbitration when he was awarded $4.25-million. Arbitrator James Duff decided against the team's offer of $3-million. Derek Jeter won $5-million Tuesday.


-- Phils give up on Hershiser

CLEARWATER -- The Phillies expect 27 pitchers for the first formal workout at Carpenter Complex this morning. Orel Hershiser won't be one of them

GM Ed Wade cut off negotiations with the 1988 NL Cy Young Award winner when his agent, Robert Fraley, didn't have an answer by a team-imposed deadline of 4 p.m. Thursday. Fraley contacted the Phillies about 10 days ago, saying the 40-year-old right-hander was interested in signing with them. Hershiser was offered a Triple-A contract and a major-league base salary of $850,000, plus performance bonuses that would have increased his salary to $2-million if he pitched 200 innings.

"I think he would have helped us," Wade said. "At the same time, I'm excited about evaluating the young pitchers we have in camp. I don't think it's worth having this hang out there as a distraction."

ARMS WANTED: The Phillies will continue to pursue trades to add pitching depth. Two names that have been mentioned are Dodgers right-hander Dave Mlicki and Diamondbacks left-hander Brian Anderson.
-- SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

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