So Joaquin Andujar didn't apologize to umpire Don Denkinger, after all. He did take the Oakland A's lineup card out to Denkinger one day last week, and he had said he would apologize for his World Series tantrum.
When he got there, though, he couldn't get the words out, and told reporters: "It's a long year. I owe him an apology, and he'll get one."
No matter. For the scouts and players and coaches who've seen Andujar this spring, he has been a manager's dream, someone who resembles the same guy who has thrown better than 250 innings three of the last four seasons and gone 41-26 the last two. Not only that, he has been the role model for a young Oakland staff that had a league-low 10 complete games in 1985. For example:
Last week, he saw Jose Rijo, 20, sitting in the stands in street clothes before an A's-Milwaukee Brewers exhibition game. "Get down here," Andujar yelled.
Rijo put his uniform on and watched the game.
A couple days later, Andujar wasn't scheduled to go to Tempe, Ariz., where the A's were to play Seattle, but he went, anyway, telling Manager Jackie Moore he needed to study American League hitters.
Reggie Jackson's situation continues to be confusing, although there's little doubt he is right when he says the Angels would like to dump him. One team that's interested is the Giants, and their general manager, Al Rosen, has talked so openly about giving Jackson another year on his contract that he has all but begged for a tampering fine.
Every time the Detroit Tigers get one player back in uniform, they lose two more. Shortstop Alan Trammell (sore shoulder) is scheduled to play his first game at shortstop Monday, which is a good thing.
He had been working as a designated hitter, but now Kirk Gibson will fill that role after pulling or tearing a muscle in his shoulder Thursday. Further, catcher Lance Parrish has told a couple of friends his back, which sidelined him two weeks last summer, is acting up again.
Draft update: The Baltimore Orioles aren't the only team catching heat about their minor league system. Despite some very high picks, Gibson is Detroit's only first-round pick since 1976 playing in the majors (that's based on the June regular-phase draft).
If the Houston Astros sign former Detroit reliever Aurelio Lopez, the Tigers will have an additional first-round pick. The last time they had two first-round picks was 1979 -- and they used them to take Rick Leach and Chris Baker.
Injury of the week: As it turned out, Philadelphia third baseman Mike Schmidt injured his back on a golf driving range.
Pitcher Scott Sanderson signed a three-year contract with the Chicago Cubs this winter, but only the first year of the deal is guaranteed ($500,000). However, if Sanderson, who has made only 24 and 19 starts the last two years, stays off the disabled list this season, the contract will become guaranteed for 1987 and '88.
Don't count on it. He already has missed a spring start because of a groin pull.
Stability update: If Ozzie Virgil is the Braves catcher on opening day, he'll be their 12th in 19 years . . .
The Phillies haven't liked what they've seen of the Virgil-for-Steve Bedrosian-and-Milt Thompson deal. In his first spring appearance, Bedrosian lasted only two-thirds of an inning and yielded seven hits and seven earned runs.
One of the hits was by Detroit first baseman Pedro Chavez, who had just arrived from the Dominican Republic the night before and hadn't faced live pitching in weeks. Another was by young batting-practice pitcher Al Labozzeta, who batted because the Tigers didn't have anyone else.
Thompson's two-base error helped allow the Tigers to tie the game.
Quote of the week: "I don't want to hear no country music in Nashville." That from Detroit third baseman Darnell Coles, saying he doesn't want to play in the minors.
Oakland rookie Jose Canseco is getting most of the attention, but the Giants believe their 22-year-old first baseman, Will (The Thrill) Clark, may be a better player.
Clark is wearing Jack Clark's old No. 22, and, as the Giants were winning their first seven Cactus League games, Clark was hitting three homers and driving in nine runs.
Giants catcher Bob Brenly has nicknamed Clark "The Career-Ender" because he homered off Joey McLaughlin and Rick Langford, two veterans trying to make it with the A's.
"Joey McLaughlin . . . ," Brenly said. "I think I saw him here selling hot dogs and draggin' the infield. Rick Langford's going to be working at Westinghouse next week."
Clark has played 65 games in the pros, all at Class A Fresno, and is trying to jump three levels and beat out Dan Driessen. "He has no holes in his swing," said Willie McCovey, a hitting instructor with the Giants