Newark Bears Woo Strawberry
The Associated Press
Tuesday, Feb. 29, 2000; 7:11 p.m. EST
NEWARK, N.J. –– If Darryl Strawberry wants to play ball during his one-year suspension, count the Newark Bears in.
"If he wants to play somewhere, we want to have him," Dave Popkin, a spokesman for the unaffiliated minor league team in New Jersey's largest city, said Tuesday.
The Bears have a new ballpark in Newark, not far from Strawberry's home in Fort Lee.
The New York Yankees outfielder was suspended for a year Monday and cannot play for any major league team or any minor league team affiliated with them.
The Bears are in the independent eight-team Atlantic League, which Popkin said had 64 former major leaguers in its ranks last season, when it fielded six teams.
"The Bears do have interest in Darryl. We know he's gone the independent route before," Popkin said. The team plans to wait a week before contacting Strawberry, Popkin said.
Strawberry played in the independent Northern League for the St. Paul Saints in 1996, hitting .435 with 18 home runs and 39 RBIs in 29 games. He spent two months with the Saints before rejoining the Yankees.
The Bears are owned by Rick Cerone, a former catcher for the Yankees and other major league clubs.
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