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YANKS BUY OUT RAINES: The New York Yankees decided to pass Thursday on their 1998 contract option for 38-year-old Tim Raines, paying the outfielder a $200,000 buyout.

Raines made $1.8 million, $800,000 of which was deferred, this season and would have made the same salary next year.

In two seasons with New York, Raines batted .305 in 133 games with 13 home runs, 71 RBIs and 18 stolen bases.

PLAYERS NIX REALIGNMENT PLAN: The players' association cast another cloud over realignment, saying Thursday it was unlikely to approve any plan that would shift the AL West Coast teams to the National League.

Owners have set an Oct. 15 deadline to decide realignment, but several have said the date almost definitely will be pushed back. Most plans under consideration would shift Anaheim, Oakland and Seattle to the NL.

Teams say realignment doesn't need players' approval, but union head Donald Fehr said players effectively have veto power because of their ability kill interleague play after the 1998 season.


PISTONS WAIVE CHILDRESS: The Detroit Pistons on Thursday waived backup point guard Randolph Childress.

Childress was acquired by the Pistons in January from Portland along with guards Aaron McKie and Reggie Jordan in exchange for forward Stacey Augmon.

Childress, 25, has played in 51 games in two NBA seasons and averaged 2.4 points per game.

WOMAN INJURED IN PLAYER'S ROOM: An Orlando woman sustained a severely broken jaw when she was attacked by a man inside an apartment where Dale Davis of the Indiana Pacers was staying during the team's training camp in Orlando, police said today.

Shala Miller, 19, was taken to a hospital for treatment about 3:30 a.m. Wednesday. She was released Thursday night.

Police said it appeared that no team members were involved in the incident, which occurred at a two-level townhouse at the Disney Institute that Davis was occupying.

DUDLEY STILL IN LIMBO: The Chris Dudley trade case is back in limbo, although it should be a brief one this time.

A three-way trade involving New York, Toronto and Portland was still not finalized Friday, even though an appeals panel ruled Thursday in favor of letting it proceed.

The process screeched to a halt Thursday night when New York and Portland argued over lottery protection for a first-round pick that would be sent from the Knicks to the Trail Blazers.

The rest of the trade has Dudley going from Portland to New York, second-year forward John Wallace going from the Knicks to Toronto and a number of draft picks changing hands.

The Knicks will get the Raptors' first-round draft pick in 1998, and Toronto also will send a second-round pick to Portland.


TYSON TESTIFIES: Mike Tyson said former opponent Mitch Green came after him like "a madman," grabbing him and ripping his shirt.

That was how their street fight began on Aug. 23, 1988, the former heavyweight champion testified Thursday.

Green is suing Tyson for $25 million for beating him up during the fight in front of Dapper Dan's, a 24-hour-a-day leather goods store on Harlem's 125th Street.

Tyson described a violent and irrational Green. Tyson said he went to the store to pick up a jacket he ordered and was there about 40 minutes when Green entered around 4 a.m.

Auto racing

TRACY SACKED: Indy-car driver Paul Tracy, whose once-promising season gave way to a physical malady and a rash of poor finishes, was fired Thursday by Marlboro Team Penske and replaced by Andre Ribeiro.


ELS IN FRONT: Ernie Els, bidding for his fourth straight World Match Play Championship, was right on course as he took a 4-up lead on two-time winner Ian Woosnam after the first 18 of 36 holes in Friday's quarterfinals.

In the other three quarterfinals on the West Course at Wentworth just south of London, Nick Price was 4-up on New Zealand's Frank Nobilo, Colin Montgomerie of Scotland and American Brad Faxon were all square, and Vijay Singh of Fiji was 4-up on Australian Steve Elkington.


BAM NOT ON LAM: Baltimore Ravens running back Byron "Bam" Morris is expected to turn himself in in response to an arrest warrant issued as part of an attempt to revoke his 10-year probation on a drug conviction.

Morris' attorney, Jay Ethington, said his client could surrender as early as Friday or as late as next week.

District Attorney Ray Sumrow of Rockwall, 25 miles east of Dallas, sought the arrest warrant. He said Morris' probation should be revoked because he violated two conditions of his probation by using alcohol and by failing to report to his probation officer seven times from July 1996 to August 1997.


U.S. WOMEN LOSE: The United States women's soccer team had its 12-game unbeaten streak snapped when it lost 3-1 to Germany, the European champion, in an exhibition game in Duisburg, Germany on Thursday.


COURIER, STARK ADVANCE: In Singapore, Americans Jim Courier and Jonathan Stark and Swedes Thomas Johansson and Magnus Gustafsson won their matches Thursday and advanced to the quarterfinals of the Heineken Open.

FERNANDEZ UPSET: American Mary Joe Fernandez lost to Naoko Sawamatsu of Japan and Amanda Coetzer outlasted teenager Anna Kournikova Thursday to reach the quarterfinals of the Porsche Cup WTA tennis tournament in Filderstadt, Germany.

TODD MARTIN ADVANCES: In Vienna, Unseeded Todd Martin started and finished strongly in a 6-4, 3-6, 6-4 victory over No. 6 Thomas Muster of Austria in the $800,000 CA Trophy tennis tournament.

E Center

SODA CHOICE: Pepsi has been awarded the contract to service West Valley City's new E Center for the next 10 years. The deal includes signage in the arena.