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Milwaukee's insurance policy

Los Angeles infield coach Monty Basgall, who was a close friend of pitcher Don Sutton when he was with the Dodgers, thinks that Sutton will give the Milwaukee Brewers exactly the insurance they need to hold their current lead in the American League East. Earlier this week, Don was traded by Houston to Milwaukee for three unidentified minor league players.

''Sutton is a marvelous competitor who, until approximately two years ago, had an outstanding curve ball,'' Basgall said. ''Even though it's not outstanding anymore, it's still a big league pitch good enough to stop most hitters. Meanwhile, Don has come up with a superb change of pace that has actually increased his effectiveness.''

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Sutton, who entered the current season with 241 lifetime wins, was 13-8 this year with the Astros, including a 3.00 earned run average. During his final year with the Dodgers (1980), Don bought four-wheel drive pickup trucks for both Basgall and former L.A. pitching coach Red Adams, who both he and his wife, Pat, consider second fathers.

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