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May 24, 2003

Pride joins long list of former Sox now with Yankees

From: Woonsocket Call, RI - May 24, 2003

DAVID BORGES, Special to The Call

PAWTUCKET --- There are numerous ex-Red Sox players who have moved over to the "Evil Empire" --- the New York Yankees' organization --- and are playing for that noted Red Sox-killer himself, manager Bucky Dent, with the Columbus Clippers.

Rolando Arrojo, the former Sox starter, is in the Clippers' bullpen and pitching very well. He worked two innings of hitless relief on Thursday night against the PawSox, striking out four. Willie Banks, who was with the PawSox the past two seasons, with a few trips to Boston sprinkled in between, is also in the Clippers' bullpen.

Marcus Jensen, who was with Pawtucket and Boston for a nanosecond in 2001, is a catcher for Columbus. And Ryan McGuire, the one-time top-notch Sox prospect who was sent to the Expos organization in 1996 as part of the deal that brought Wil Cordero to Boston, is playing first base for the Clippers.

On Friday, yet another familiar face joined Columbus. Curtis Pride, who became just the fifth deaf player ever to play in a major league game back in the early-1990's with Montreal and later saw time with both the PawSox and Red Sox, was signed on Friday and was playing left field and batting second for the Clippers Friday night.

Pride had been playing with the Nashua Pride of the independent Atlantic League, where he was hitting .344 with five homers and 25 RBIs in just 16 games. He took over the roster spot vacated by Juan Rivera, who was promoted to the Yankees to replace the injured Bernie Williams.

Pride spent last season with Triple-A Nashville, hitting .296 with 10 homers, 46 RBIs and 22 stolen bases. He was with the PawSox in 1997 and again in 2000, earning brief promotions to Boston both years.

Pride was born deaf at birth in Washington D.C., back on Dec. 17, 1968. His mother Sallie, a nurse, had been exposed to German measles or Rubella, and that is believed to be the reason why Curtis was born deaf.

Using a hearing aid, Pride can hear noises, but it's hard for him to differentiate. He relies on reading lips and is extremely adept at it, so much so that you can have a normal conversation with him and not even realize that he's hearing-imparied.


With the eyes of the sports world on Annika Sorrenstam, Buddy Bailey has his own Annika story to tell.

Back in 1995, when Bailey was managing in Australia, the Australian Ladies Masters was being held right next door to the ballpark. Inside the course's hotel, Bailey bumped into Sorrenstam and fellow Swedish golfer Nicolette Neumann. He asked her how so many good golfers come from Sweden, and Sorrenstam told him that the country has a great junior golf program.

Later, during the tournament, Sorrenstam nearly hit Bailey with one of her drives. It hit another fan in the gallery, instead.


Due to inclement weather, a pair of events have been postponed today at McCoy. The Rhode Island Pitch, Hit and Run state finals has been postponed until Saturday, June 7, beginning at 8:30 a.m. And the Boy Scout Sleepover slated for tonight has been postponed and will be made up on Saturday, Aug. 9 and Saturday, Aug. 16. The PawSox will host two more Boy Scout Sleepovers on June 7 and 21. For more information about the Scout Sleepovers, call the PawSox at (401)724-7300.


Still on for Saturday, however, will be the first of four Free Youth Clinics at McCoy. The event will run from 2-3:15 p.m., is open to youngsters of all ages and is free of charge. PawSox manager Buddy Bailey, pitching coach Mike Griffin, hitting coach U.L. Washington and players like Freddy Sanchez, Andy Dominique and Ryan Cameron will offer youngsters baseball instruction.

©The Call 2003