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Lack of booze may end Boomer’s career - Metro US

Lack of booze may end Boomer’s career

“He’s not the same David. He’s no longer loose and fearless, like he was when he drank.”

Alcohol has been blamed for the demises of many careers, but there’s a popular belief within Major League Baseball these days that a veteran pitcher is losing it because he was compelled to stop drinking.

David (Boomer) Wells, who launched his big-league career with the Toronto Blue Jays in 1987, has been struggling lamentably with the San Diego Padres in recent weeks and the consensus is, at 44, he may be discarded before the season ends.

His age, however, is not being cited as the main reason for his pitching woes. Rather, insiders believe, Wells is plunging downhill after doctor’s orders he refrain from drinking.

By his own admission, Wells was a heavy drinker for years. Earlier this season, he was diagnosed with diabetes and was warned that he would be risking his life if he kept on chugging.

“He’s not the same David,” an NL scout says. “He’s no longer loose and fearless, like he was when he drank. It’s weird, but the word going around baseball is that alcohol made Wells stronger mentally and more confident.”

In his past three starts, Wells has recorded a ghastly earned-run average of 13.50.

• Former NBA referee Tim Donaghy, described publicly in recent weeks as crooked and a rogue, may claim next week he never associated with mobsters, sources say.

They say he may reveal he owed money to a couple ex-school chums who became bookies.

“These guys aren’t even low-level mobsters,” a source says. “They’re just low-lifes who apparently pressured Donaghy to do things to make up for his debts.”

• Other tidbits of information coming from other sources:

• The Blue Jays still would like the Pittsburgh Pirates’ Jack Wilson to replace Royce Clayton, whom they’ve cut loose, but it’s likely the shortstop soon will be dealt to the Detroit Tigers.

Terry Pendleton, hitting coach for the Atlanta Braves, will succeed Buddy Bell, who’s quitting as the Kansas City Royals’ manager after this season.

Pamela Anderson is hot and heavy with David Binn, a long snapper with the San Diego Chargers.

Scott Morrison, dropped by Rogers Sportsnet a couple years ago after an unsuccessful stint as the network’s newsroom chief, has applied to become Hockey Night in Canada’s bossman.

• The Boston Celtics, strengthened by their acquisition this week of 7-footer Kevin Garnett, will soon sign the equally tall Dikembe Mutombo, whose age ranges somewhere between 41 and 47.

• And I’m hearing the Argonauts will be put up for sale in the not-too-distant future.

For details, check my latestCFL Report, exclusively at www.metronews.ca.

marty.york@metronews.ca

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