With three teammates, it would be easy for Mark Martin to enlist some help to slow Tony Stewart in the chase for the Winston Cup title.
But car owner Jack Roush won't stand for that in Sunday's season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
"We are one race team that races four cars, but the feeling of fair play does pervade the team," Roush said. "The guys, I'm sure, without any conversation, will give (Stewart) every consideration to have clean track and an opportunity to do what he needs to do."
As will most of the other drivers in the 43-car field -- no one wants to cause the accident that could derail the championship fight between Stewart and Martin.
Stewart holds an 89-point lead over Martin in the standings as both drivers seeking their first Winston Cup title.
Baker agent: Cubs need to dip deeper
The Chicago Cubs can probably reach a deal with manager Dusty Baker if they "dip into their pockets a little deeper," agent Jeff Moorad said.
The two sides have been negotiating since Tuesday and Moorad said he spoke twice Thursday with Cubs CEO Andy MacPhail.
"This is not a typical player-like negotiation," Moorad said on the Cubs' flagship station, WGN radio, Thursday night.
"This is frankly a bit different in the sense there is not a lot of hard bargaining or argumentation. This is more about philosophy. In fairness, the last issues are generally the dollars and cents and that is what we are addressing right now."
The sides are discussing a four-year deal that reports say could be worth between $14 to $16 million.
"How close? I don't know I could say at the moment," Moorad said.
"Everybody is trying, we're not there yet and that doesn't mean that there isn't a real legitimate process under way.
"It's our goal to get something completed. We hope it can come together in the next few days. ... It certainly has a real chance of happening."
North Dakota State coach disciplines son
North Dakota State head football coach Bob Babich has disciplined his son for the team's final season game Saturday against St. Cloud State.
Cornerback Bobby Babich was suspended for violating team rules, the head coach said. He refused to elaborate, but he said his son approached him about the violation.
"He let me know what transpired," Coach Babich said. "So we treated him like we treat everybody else."
The Bison (2-7) are in last place in the North Central Conference.
"It's just tough," the coach said. "I know my son is different from everybody else. He understands that. But he's not going to be treated any different."
Bobby Babich has started on most of NDSU's special teams and played as a backup cornerback, with 10 tackles and one interception.
Maddux wins 13th straight Gold Glove
Greg Maddux won his 13th straight Gold Glove, and St. Louis Cardinals players won four of the nine National League awards Thursday.
Maddux, who extended his own NL record for pitchers, moved within three of the overall record, held by Jim Kaat. Maddux, who has won 10 of his Gold Gloves with the Atlanta Braves, became a free agent after the World Series.
Cardinals second baseman Fernando Vina, shortstop Edgar Renteria, third baseman Scott Rolen and outfielder Jim Edmonds all were winners.
Edmonds has won three straight NL Gold Gloves after winning three in the AL with Anaheim. Vina repeated at second base, and Rolen, acquired from Philadelphia during the season, won for the third straight year and fourth time overall. Renteria replaced Montreal's Orlando Cabrera at shortstop.
Houston's Brad Ausmus repeated at catcher, and Colorado's Todd Helton repeated at first base.
Edmonds was joined in the outfield by Colorado's Larry Walker, who won his seventh Gold Glove, and Atlanta's Andruw Jones, who won his fifth in a row.
Vina and Renteria get $100,000 bonuses, Edmonds and Walker get $50,000 each, and Ausmus and Helton receive $25,000.
Gold Gloves, presented since 1957 by St. Louis-based Rawlings, are voted on by managers and coaches before the end of the regular season. They may not select players on their own teams, and they vote only for players in their own league.
Newspapers: Melvin new Mariners manager
Bob Melvin, bench coach for the Arizona Diamondbacks the past two seasons, has been chosen as manager of the Seattle Mariners, the city's two daily newspapers reported Friday.
The job would be the first as a big-league manager for Melvin, 41, who turned to scouting and coaching after 10 seasons in the majors as a catcher. His only time managing was with Maryvale in the Arizona Fall League in 1999.
An official announcement on Lou Piniella's successor was being planned for Friday, The Seattle Times and Seattle Post-Intelligencer reported.
The Times said Melvin's contract would be for two years. He would be the team's 12th manager.
Mariners general manager Pat Gillick would neither confirm nor deny the reports.
Piniella was hired last month by the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. After 10 seasons in Seattle, he asked to be released from his contract so he could be closer to his family in Florida.
The four finalists to replace him were Melvin, Baltimore bench coach Sam Perlozzo, former Colorado Rockies and Detroit Tigers manager Buddy Bell, and former San Diego Padres and Chicago Cubs manager Jim Riggleman.
Riggleman, who lives in Florida, and Perlozzo, who lives in Maryland, said they had heard a choice had been made but they could not get to Seattle in time for an announcement Friday.
All-Star first basseman Paul Konerko agreed to a $23 million, three-year contract with the Chicago White Sox.
Pitcher Andy Pettitte's $11.5 million option was exercised by the New York Yankees in the team's first big decision of the offseason.
Mike Hampton will rethink blocking a proposed six-player deal that would send him from Colorado to the Florida Marlins.
The tentative trade would move Hampton and outfielder Juan Pierre to the Marlins for catcher Charles Johnson, outfielder Preston Wilson, left-hander Vic Darensbourg and infielder Pablo Ozuna. Hampton and Johnson have until midday Saturday to decide whether to waive their no-trade clauses.
The Royals had their highest payroll in 2002 and their worst win-loss record, so Kansas City owner David Glass intends to trim the payroll by about $10 million to $37 million for 2003.
Texas outfielder Rusty Greer knows he will miss the 2003 season after four offseason operations, but he doesn't believe it means the end of his career.
Pitchers Tex Hughson, Boo Ferriss and Jim Lonborg, outfielders Duffy Lewis and Fred Lynn, shortstop Rick Burleson and former chief executive officer John Harrington were inducted into the Boston Red Sox Hall of Fame.
Carolina Panthers rookie defensive end Julius Peppers was suspended for four games by the NFL for testing positive for a banned substance in a dietary supplement. Peppers would appeal the suspension, meaning he can play in Sunday's game against Tampa Bay.
Hewitt top netter
Andre Agassi's second loss in the season-ending Masters Cup means Lleyton Hewitt will finish the year with the world No. 1 ranking.
Agassi double-faulted on match point, handing Juan Carlos Ferrero a 7-5, 2-6, 7-6 (6) victory. Shortly after the match, Agassi withdrew from the tournament with a hip injury.
Hewitt gave Marat Safin his third straight loss. Agassi's second straight defeat also clinched a semifinal berth for Roger Federer, who ran his record to 2-0 by stopping Jiri Novak.
Milestone for Bruin
Boston defenseman Don Sweeney played in his 1,000th career game, becoming just the fourth player in Bruins history to reach the mark with all of his games in a Boston uniform. Ray Bourque (1,518), John Bucyk (1,436) and Wayne Cashman (1,027) are the others.
A Methodist College football player in Fayetteville, N .C., has been charged with sodomizing a teammate with a pen, and six other players were charged with misdemeanor hazing.
Several Sacramento State players greased their jerseys with nonstick cooking spray on the sideline during their loss at Montana last weekend. Before determining a punishment, the Big Sky Conference and Sacramento State are trying to figure out how many players used the spray and whether coaches knew.
Maryland linebacker E.J. Henderson, Oklahoma defensive tackle Tommie Harris, Texas defensive end Cory Redding and Arizona State defensive end Terrell Suggs are the finalists for the Lombardi Award, which will be presented Dec. 11 in Houston.
PGA back in Boston
The PGA Tour is returning to the Boston area for the first time in five years with a $5 million event that will end on Labor Day and feature Tiger Woods, whose foundation will get the charitable proceeds.
The tournament will be called the Deutsche Bank U.S. Championship and will be played at the TPC of Boston for at least the first two years of the four-year contract.
College cage notes
Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas are No. 2, No. 3 and No. 4 in the preseason poll, making the Big 12 the first conference other than the Atlantic Coast ever to have three teams in the preseason top five.
The ACC did it twice, before the 1973-74 season with No. 2 North Carolina State, No. 4 Maryland and No. 5 North Carolina, and before the 1997-98 season with No. 3 Duke, No. 4 North Carolina and No. 5 Clemson.
"The whole league from top to bottom is the strongest that it has ever been," said Kansas Coach Roy Williams, who has three starters back from a Final Four team.
Team to keep an eye on: Texas Tech, with Andre Emmett leading four starters back from Bob Knight's first team in Lubbock, which went 23-9 and lost in the first round of the NCAA tournament.
Number to watch: Knight's victory total. He is 13 victories from No. 800, where he would join Dean Smith (879), Adolph Rupp (876), Clarence "Big House" Gaines (828) and Jim Phelan, who has 819 victories and is still coaching at Mount St. Mary's in Maryland.
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