Warszawski: Tony Gwynn was also a Hall of Fame person

The Fresno BeeJune 16, 2014 

Enter the Warzone, light reading for light-headed readers.

• Twenty years ago, a green reporter at an 11,000-circulation newspaper stood inside the visiting clubhouse at Candlestick Park working up the nerve to approach the great Tony Gwynn for an interview.

Fifteen minutes later, the reporter left Gywnn's locker wondering if all professional athletes were so accommodating and friendly.

Nope, just Gwynn. The man was a .338 career hitter who batted 1.000 as a human being.

• Gwynn attributed his rare form of head and neck cancer to decades of chewing tobacco.

Just a pinch between your cheek and gum ... and you'll wind up with a hole in your cheek and cancer in your gums.

• Watching Brazil, The Netherlands and Germany in their opening World Cup matches has given us a better understanding of why the sport's popularity lags in the U.S. compared to the rest of the world.

Soccer played by Americans looks nothing like that.

• The U.S. dominated the first minute and the 86th. Besides that, it was all Ghana.

Good win, but it still doesn't explain how a country with 275 million fewer people can field a more athletic team.

• Moments after John Brooks scored the winning goal, someone updated Brooks' Wikipedia page to read "He is the greatest American since Abraham Lincoln."

Yes, soccer fans are passionate.

• In a perfect world, Rodney Terry would have to "prove it" for one more year before getting a three-year contract extension.

In the real world, Fresno State had to act now so that Terry's status doesn't become an issue.

• Terry is a top-notch recruiter, yet it took him three years to assemble a legitimate Division I roster.

Which only further illustrates how downtrodden the program was when he arrived.

• Won-loss records and APR scores are nice. But more than anything, Fresno State needs men's basketball to make money for the athletic department.

The program lost $92,636 during the 2012-'13 academic year, according to figures the university reported to the Department of Education.

That cannot continue.

• Only a week ago, Giants fans were walking on air.

Six losses in seven games later they're trudging through foot-deep mud in flip-flops.

• Closer Sergio Romo has a 19.80 ERA against the Rockies and 1.93 against everyone else.

Yet Bruce Bochy keeps putting him out there against Colorado. For reasons known only to him.

• A little reality check for those expecting instant success for every local baseball player chosen in the recent draft:

Carlos Salazar, 1-6 with a 10.60 ERA for the Class-A Rome Braves. (Since demoted to rookie ball.)

• Four words longtime Grizzlies fans never thought they'd read: designated hitter Brian Bocock.

• Anyone who wants Derek Carr to have a long, productive NFL career had better hope he doesn't start as a rookie.

Not with those tailbacks and receivers ...

• Yes, we realize Oakland signed Maurice Jones-Drew to pair with Darren McFadden.

Too bad it isn't 2010.

• For no particular reason: Sterling Hitchcock

• The U.S. Open? More like open and shut.

• On this date 20 years ago, a white Ford Bronco, with O.J. Simpson in the back seat, led Los Angeles police on a slow-speed chase along the 405 freeway.

Ninety-five million Americans were glued to their TVs. Which is some 83 million more than have ever watched the Daytona 500.

So much for a need for speed.

Pump the brakes on the Warzone at (559) 441-6218, marekw@fresnobee.com or @MarekTheBee on Twitter.

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