Originally created 01/18/00

Overtime: Evans players set to sign college grants



Evans High School outfielders Jamal Jones and Kenny Ludlow will sign letters of intent for college baseball later this week. Jones will sign with Middle Georgia College on Wednesday while Ludlow will sign with Young Harris College on Thursday.

Jones, a two-year starter, also played football and was a member of The Augusta Chronicle's all-area football team this past season. Last spring, he developed into one of the area's top leadoff hitters, exhibiting both power and speed. The senior batted over .375.

Jones will join former Evans standout B.J. Long at Middle Georgia.

HORSE RACING:

Charismatic, who broke a leg while straining for a victory in the Belmont Stakes and the Triple Crown champion, was honored as the Horse of the Year for 1999 on Monday night.

The strapping chestnut colt, a claiming horse in February and a Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner in the spring, won the Eclipse Award as racing's top performer in a split vote with Europe-based Daylami, winner of the Breeders' Cup Turf on Nov. 6 in his only U.S. start.

Charismatic finished third in the Belmont Stakes, 1 1/2 lengths behind winner Lemon Drop Kid, while sustaining two fractures of his left front leg. The breakdown apparently happened with about an eighth-mile remaining. His record for the year was four wins, two seconds and a third, with earnings of $2,007,404.

Eclipse Award winners were honored Monday night at the Beverly Hills Hilton in Beverly Hills, Calif.

Bob Baffert beat D. Wayne Lukas for Trainer of the Year. Baffert trains two Eclipse champions -- Chilukki, 2-year-old filly, and S ilverbulletday, 3-year-old filly.

Ludlow grabbed headlines two seasons ago during his sophomore season, showing promise as a power hitter. He got off to a slow start last season after a toe injury forced him to miss the early part of the baseball season.

However, he rebounded with another solid season and helped the Knights into the second round of the state baseball playoffs.

PRO BASEBALL:

Mike Hampton was traded from Houston to New York because he wouldn't negotiate a contract extension with the Astros. He hasn't placed the same limitation on the Mets.

"I wanted to make sure we would have a chance to win the World Series," Hampton said Monday. "I was going to play the season out see what direction they were going. I wanted to see if the revenues would increase and they would add the players necessary to win the World Series."

Hampton has no such worries about the Mets, who have added the ace pitcher they needed to a team that lost to Atlanta in the NL championship series last season.

The biggest remaining question for the Mets is figuring out who will be their fifth starter. The addition of Hampton, gives New York a solid top of the rotation with Al Leiter and Rick Reed.

Settling two of their three salary arbitration cases, the San Diego Padres agreed Monday to a $2 million, two-year contract with right-hander Donne Wall and a $700,000, one-year deal with outfielder Ruben Rivera.

Wall, 32, was 7-4 with a 3.07 ERA in 55 relief appearances last season and made $275,000. He gets $700,000 this year and $1.15 million in 2001, and San Diego has a $1.6 million option for 2002 with a $150,000 buyout.

Rivera, a 26-year-old outfielder acquired from the New York Yankees in the Hideki Irabu trade three years ago, struggled last season, hitting just .195 with 23 homers and 48 RBI in 411 at-bats. He made $265,000.

AUTO RACING:

The Dakar Rally restarted in Libya on Monday after terrorist threats forced a six-day delay and an airlift of the vehicles from Niger.

Competitors in the rugged endurance race restarted in Sabha, some 400 miles south of the Libyan capital of Tripoli. They will cover about 1,000 miles before entering Egypt on Thursday for the final stages, Egypt's Middle East News Agency reported.

The race was halted Tuesday after the French government warned of possible terrorist attacks in the central African country of Niger, a former French colony.

HORSE RACING:

Philadelphia Park racetrack canceled its racing card Monday as temperatures struggled to get out of the teens and wind chills dipped well below zero. The park got in one race before canceling the rest of the day's events.