Who's Hot/Who's Not

June 12, 2005

WHO'S Hot

Santanas

Twins ace Johan Santana (right) is 6-2; Angels rookie Ervin Santana threw a shutout; and Brewers reliever Julio Santana is holding opponents to a .102 batting average. "You could ... put together a staff of Santanas," says Brewers G.M. Doug Melvin. "[Carlos] could sing the national anthem."

The Shaq Approach

Shaquille O'Neal may not be going to the NBA Finals, but he's going to the mensch hall of fame after volunteering to help pay for the funeral of George Mikan (page 52). "Without number 99 there is no me," said Shaq of Mikan's impact. The family accepted the offer. "It just speaks to what Shaquille is all about," Mikan's son Terry said.

Kyle Busch

Kurt's kid brother (he's only 20) won his second straight Craftsman Truck series race, was runner-up in the Nextel Cup MBNA RacePoints 400 and was the only driver to run in three races at Dover. Said the Nextel Cup rookie, "I had a blast."

Jim Leyland

The 60-year-old former Pirates, Marlins and Rockies skipper and two-time NL Manager of the Year is eager to get back in the game and could be a candidate for soon-to-be-open jobs with the struggling Rockies, Indians and others. But Leyland vows he's not after Lloyd McClendon's spot in Pittsburgh, explaining, "Lloyd's my friend."

 

WHO'S Not

Mortons

On Friday the Redskins cut return specialist Chad Morton to save $540,000 in salary-cap space. He may get some sympathy from his older brother, wide receiver Johnnie (right), who was released by the Chiefs a day earlier to save $2.4 million against the cap.

The Stern Approach

The Pistons' Rasheed Wallace got a $20,000 fine for 1) dissing the refs and 2) swearing at a press conference. And how's this for an early Father's Day gift: Nuggets coach George Karl was suspended three games after the NBA said he made contact with a player not yet eligible for the draft--while at a Marquette basketball camp watching his 20-year-old son, Coby, play.

Jeff Gordon

After getting bumped from behind by Tony Stewart, Gordon crashed on Lap 41 at Dover, for his fifth DNF of the year, more than he had all last season. When Gordon griped about the goosing, Stewart said, "Jeff's always whining."

Lelands

The auction house is selling pieces of the plane that was carrying Pirates Hall of Famer Roberto Clemente when it crashed in 1972, killing him. Said Roberto Clemente Jr., who is pursuing legal action to stop future auctions, "The Clemente family simply will not tolerate anyone trying to benefit from my father's passing."

COLOR PHOTOAL TIELEMANS (SANTANA) COLOR PHOTODAVID DUROCHIK/SPORTPICS (MORTON) COLOR PHOTOCHRIS GARDNER/AP (BUSCH) COLOR PHOTO ALAN MARLER/AP (GORDON)

HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)