Herzog enters Hall of Fame with umpire
INDIANAPOLIS — Whitey Herzog spent a good, long time stewing about a blown call in the 1985 World Series. So in a strange way, perhaps this fits: He's going into the Hall of Fame, standing next to an umpire.
Herzog and prominent crew chief Doug Harvey got the call Monday, elected to the Hall by the Veterans Committee.
Herzog was a single vote short in his previous try, and might've made it sooner with another crown on his resume. But he was forever linked to Don Denkinger after the ump's infamous miss in Game 6 so long ago cost the St. Louis Cardinals a chance to clinch.
"No, I'm not bitter at Denkinger," Herzog said at Busch Stadium. "He's a good guy, he knows he made a mistake, and he's a human being. It happened at an inopportune time but I do think they ought to have instant replay in the playoffs and World Series."
As for Harvey, Herzog joshed: "I don't know why he should get in. Doug kicked me out of more games than any other umpire."
Like Herzog, Harvey fell one vote shy in the last election. This time, they both easily drew enough support to reach Cooperstown.
"I don't think I would've had my heart broken if I'd missed by another vote or two. But I'm damn happy it's over," Herzog said. "It was just in the last few years when I was only missing by a few votes that I thought, maybe I do deserve it."
Among those who came close this year was former players' union head Marvin Miller. He was on a separate slate for executives and officials, and fell two votes short.
"Very few individuals have had as significant or as positive an impact upon the history of baseball as Marvin," union head Michael Weiner said in a statement. "The Hall remains incomplete without Marvin's plaque."
Herzog was a fixture in major league dugouts for two decades. He won the 1982 World Series and three NL pennants with the Cardinals and three division titles with Kansas City. He became the 19th manager to make the Hall.
Patrick to run limited NASCAR schedule
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Part, but not all, of the plans IndyCar Series star Danica Patrick has to enter NASCAR will finally be revealed Tuesday.
Patrick, whose flirtation with NASCAR has been the subject of endless speculation for months, has signed a contract with JR Motorsports to run a limited schedule in the Nationwide Series, beginning next season, The Charlotte Observer and ThatsRacin.com have learned. However, exactly what that schedule includes remains unclear. Sources said no specific number of races — or even her first Nationwide race — will be announced on Tuesday.
What is clear is open-wheel racing's most popular driver will join forces with NASCAR's most popular driver, Dale Earnhardt Jr., one of four owners of JR Motorsports.
She will however take her first official venture in a stock car next week, when she participates in the Automobile Racing Club of America test session Dec. 18-20 at Daytona International Speedway.
Patrick is planning to enter the Feb. 6 ARCA season opener in a JR Motorsports-prepared Chevrolet. Her performance in that race will in part determine what Nationwide races she does in 2010, sources said.
Earnhardt Jr. said last Thursday that his sister, team executive vice president Kelley Earnhardt, was in negotiations to put Patrick in a car for a partial Nationwide schedule.
Patrick, 27, announced last week that she would compete in the full IndyCar Series season for Andretti Autosport for at least the next two seasons with a mutual option for a third.
Detroit's McCarty announces retirement
TORONTO — Darren McCarty, a veteran of 15 NHL seasons who won four Stanley Cups with the Detroit Red Wings, officially announced his retirement Monday.
The 37-year-old McCarty spent 13 seasons with the Red Wings. He appeared in 758 games overall, recording 127 goals, 288 points and 1,477 penalty minutes.
He scored the Cup-winning goal in the 1997 finals against Philadelphia to end Detroit's 42-year title drought. He also helped the Red Wings hoist the Cup in 1998, 2002 and '08.
"I'm very proud to have played for as long as I did, with so many great teammates and to have been a part of all those strong teams, especially the four Stanley Cup-winning teams in Detroit," McCarty said in a statement released by the NHL players' association. "Playing with and against the best players in the world for the past 15 years has been an amazing experience."
The Red Wings selected the hard-nosed right wing with the 46th overall pick in the 1992 draft. He made his NHL debut during the 1993-94 season, playing in 67 games as a rookie. McCarty, who embraced the enforcer's role in Hockeytown and became a fan favorite, had his best season in the 1996-97 Cup-winning campaign, scoring 19 goals to go with 30 assists.
McCarty saved his best for the postseason with 49 points in 174 career playoff games, including six game-winning goals.
After signing with the Calgary Flames in 2005, he returned to Detroit to finish his career. McCarty played in only 13 games last season before becoming a free agent and was not signed this past offseason.
"It was a great ride. I appreciate what the game has given me and I'm happy with what I was able to accomplish as a hockey player, but now I'm excited for the next chapter," he said.
—Deseret News staff and wire reports