The low down On Lo Duca

Jun 21, 2005 6:23 AM

The day started low key, not much to do except wash clothes.

I wanted to get home to watch the last five races at Hollywood Park in hopes of finding some candidates for my Horses To Watch column. I got an ice tea and turned on TVG with my trusty notebook in hand. What was written down came not from some bad trip a horse made, but something all together different and troubling.

The regular TVG announcers had a guest on the show, Florida Marlins catcher Paul Lo Duca, who is also a horse owner and just happened to be in town playing the Angels. The conversation started mostly about owning horses and amounted up to about nothing. But then it turned to the Kentucky Derby.

Lo Duca tells the boys he had a bet on Giacomo to win the Derby and the race was just about to run. They were in the middle of a game and the Marlins were at bat. Lo Duca tells them he goes down into the clubhouse to watch the race and is standing there rooting his horse on when someone is telling him he’s the on deck batter. Now things really start to get dicey.

Lo Duca is asked about the pine tar incident when Frank Robinson complained to the ump that Angels reliever Brendan Donnelly had pine tar on his glove. The rule is that a pitcher is not allowed to apply any foreign substance. Well. this ended in a big brouhaha between both managers.

The TVG announcer wanted to know what Lo Duca thought about the incident. The answer had me dumb founded. He said, "If you ain’t cheatin’ you ain’t trying,"

This is the new attitude of pro sports?

Four days later, nothing has been said about the Lo Duca pine tar remark. I guess young people nowadays think cheating is the way to go. No wonder the NFL (drugs), baseball (steroids) steroids and NBA (all of the above) are an embarrassment to most normal people.

I was just thinking Mays, Mantle, Koufax, Clemente and Henry Aaron didn’t cheating and they were trying every time they stepped onto the field. All I can say is, what a shame!

By the way, Miami Dolphins RB Ricky Williams has entered the NFL substance abuse system. Last year, he said he would rather smoke pot than play in the NFL. I guess he finally figured that lifestyle was more important, or did he? We will have to wait and see.

One last thought on Lo Duca. If he is "cheating’" he sure isn’t doing a good job of hitting. I guess if he "ain’t cheating, he ain’t tryin."