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BEIRNE IN PRESSURE SITUATION.



Byline: KEVIN MODESTI

DENVER - Their pitching has been so good for so long this baseball summer, their rotation so healthy and hardy in the rising heat of the pennant race, it's hard to believe the Dodgers have come to this.

Tonight, in mid-September, they hand the ball to somebody named Kevin Beirne Kevin Patrick Beirne (born January 1, 1974, in Houston, Texas) was a Major League Baseball right-handed pitcher. He is an alumnus of Texas A&M University, where he played wide receiver for the Aggie football team.  and ask him to keep the playoff wild card from slipping away.

Kevin Beirne, who is one vowel, one consonant and 181 major-league victories away from being Kevin Brown The name Kevin Brown can refer to several different people, including the following:
  • Kevin Brown (baseball) (b. 1965), a former Major League Baseball right-handed starting pitcher with 211 career wins
  • Kevin D. Brown (b.
. Kevin Beirne, who takes a 6.50 lifetime ERA up against the opponents' ace, against the world's hardest-hitting lineup, against the world's toughest pitching park. Kevin Beirne, who previews his first Dodgers start in the humble tones of a chimney sweep chimney sweep
n.
A worker employed to clean soot from chimneys. Also called chimney sweeper.


chimney sweep
Noun

a person who cleans soot from chimneys

chimney sweep 
 beginning a private tour of Buckingham Palace Buckingham Palace (bŭk`ĭng-əm), residence of British sovereigns from 1837, in Westminster metropolitan borough, London, England, adjacent to St. James's Park. .

``It's an honor,'' he kept saying Thursday before watching the Dodgers just get outplayed by the Colorado Rockies For the National Hockey League team (1976 – 1982), now known as the New Jersey Devils, see .
The Colorado Rockies are a Major League Baseball team based in Denver, Colorado. They are in the West Division of the National League.
 and lose 7-1 in the rain-delayed opener of a four-game series at Coors Field Coordinates:

    [
.

An honor to be a 28-year-old, on his third club after a trade and a release, carrying a Dodgers playoff bid on his right arm.

``I know how much tradition there is (in Los Angeles Los Angeles (lôs ăn`jələs, lŏs, ăn`jəlēz'), city (1990 pop. 3,485,398), seat of Los Angeles co., S Calif.; inc. 1850. ),'' said Beirne, a native of Houston. ``I know about Don Drysdale
    Donald Scott Drysdale (July 23, 1936 – July 3, 1993) was an American right-handed pitcher in Major League Baseball. He was born in Van Nuys, Los Angeles, California.
     and Sandy Koufax
      Sanford Koufax (IPA pronunciation: /'kofæks/) (born Sanford Braun, on December 30, 1935, in Brooklyn, New York) is an American left-handed former pitcher in Major League Baseball who played his entire career for the Brooklyn/Los Angeles Dodgers, from 1955 to 1966.
      . I've been in Vero Beach Vero Beach (vēr`o), city (1990 pop. 17,350), seat of Indian River co., E Fla., on Indian River (a lagoon and part of the Intracoastal Waterway); founded c.1888, inc. 1919.  and seen Kirk Gibson's picture on the wall. It kind of gives you chills to think you're pitching where those guys did.''

      In a pennant race in September, when those guys did.

      ``Hopefully, I go out there and get ahead and use our great defense, and either (catcher Chad) Kreuter or (Paul) Lo Duca calls a great game,'' said Beirne, whose name is pronounced burn, trying to turn down the temperature. ``You can't expect to throw a no-hitter.''

      It's his second major-league start.

      In September 2000, when he was a Chicago White Sox The Chicago White Sox are a professional baseball team based in Chicago, Illinois. The White Sox are a member of the Central Division of Major League Baseball's American League. From to the present, the White Sox have played in U.S.  rookie, he was given the modest assignment of facing Pedro Martinez with the Boston Red Sox The Boston Red Sox are a professional baseball team based in Boston, Massachusetts. The Red Sox are a member and currently champions of the Eastern Division of Major League Baseball’s American League. From to the present, the Red Sox have played in Fenway Park.  in the wild-card race. He is proud to say he pitched well. Five innings, two hits, three runs. Pedro, of course, pitched better.

      ``(Tonight) is the same kind of deal,'' Beirne said of getting thrown into the fire.

      Only tonight, pitching well enough to lose won't do Beirne or the Dodgers any good, not when the playoffs hang on every result with 16 left on the schedule.

      Beirne needs to be this pennant race's unlikely Dodgers hero, this year's Dick Nen, R.J. Reynolds, Jack Fimple or Chad Fonville.

      You can always sound baseball-savvy when somebody asks whether the local team can go places if you answer, ``We'll see if the pitching holds up.''

      For five months, it appeared the Dodgers' might.

      They were making it through the season using only six starters, adding Omar Daal to the rotation after Brown went down with injuries. The staff ERA was lower than anybody's in the National League's except Atlanta's. The pitchers were carrying the lineup of Shawn Green and the seven dwarfs.

      Then, cracks appeared, figuratively and literally. Andy Ashby developed an infection in a finger and hasn't appeared since Sept. 4. Kazuhisa Ishii got conked on the head by a line drive and won't appear again this season. Odalis Perez struggled and Daal lost his second start in a row Wednesday. Brown tries to pitch himself into postseason form. The consistent brilliance of Hideo Nomo won't be enough.

      Beirne replaces Ishii.

      It's so last year, when injuries forced the Dodgers to use a dozen starting pitchers, among them Jeff Williams, Dennis Springer and Terry Mulholland.

      It's so this April, when there were question marks up and down the Dodgers' rotation, from post-surgery Brown and Ashby to the young Perez to the erratic Ishii.

      ``The (starters') names I write down and erase, and write down and erase, they look as good to me as the guys we're competing against,'' manager Jim Tracy said confidently Wednesday.

      Tonight, Tracy writes down Kevin Beirne, who's 1-0 in nine relief appearances for the Dodgers after going 10-3 for Class-AAA Las Vegas, whom his old Chicago general manager Dan Evans sent him after spring training with an emergency like this in mind. It won't be easy for Tracy to grip a pen with his fingers crossed. Colorado starts 16-7 Jason Jennings.

      Beirne, 6-foot-4, with a rugged red beard beneath friendly features, was a Texas A&M wide receiver. Beirne's father, Jim, caught passes for the Houston Oilers and San Diego Chargers
        “Chargers” redirects here. For other uses, see Charger.

      The San Diego Chargers are a professional American football team based in San Diego, California.
      . Kevin was recruited by an Aggies offensive coordinator named Bob Toledo.

      Beirne switched from the outfield to pitching in part because a pitcher's schedule melded better with his football. He said he didn't begin to learn to pitch until he was 21 and in pro ball. And he's still catching playing catch-up.

      Ask the Dodgers' pitching coach about Beirne and the first thing Jim Colborn said is that he's ``a guy that's never gotten much of a chance in the big leagues.''

      He's about to get it.

      The faltering Dodgers need him to make the most of it.
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      No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
      Copyright 2002, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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      Article Details
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      Title Annotation:Sports
      Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
      Date:Sep 13, 2002
      Words:837
      Previous Article:BAD BOY IN RING, GOOD FATHER OUTSIDE VARGAS TRIES TO BE THE DAD HE NEVER HAD GROWING UP.
      Next Article:ANOTHER PITCHER BITES DUST DAAL ROUGHED UP IN DODGERS' LOSS COLORADO 7, DODGERS 1.



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