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Saturday, August 20, 2011
Scott Diamond, Joker Phillips make All-Card Team


Hear the letters WSOP a decade ago and you might assume you were about to listen to the sounds of the Big Band era on a 5,000-watt radio station from somebody's basement in Wauwatosa, Wisc. Today, of course, we know better. WSOP means World Series of Poker, and as such, Page 2 presents its All-Card Team:

Scott Diamond: The Twins hope this guy can be an ace. For now, he'd be justified if he felt like a flop card. He was called up for his MLB debut on July 18, in which he pitched into the seventh inning and allowed a respectable three earned runs. And was promptly returned to Triple-A thereafter.

Ace Loomis: Back in the day, everybody had a nickname, and Ace was as common as they came. But Ace Darl Loomis trumped 'em all. That was his given name, and he took it with him to the Green Bay Packers, for whom he acquired three of a kind: exactly four interceptions in three straight seasons (1951-53).

Mel Queen: We'd call him a Jack-of-all-trades, but that would be playing the wrong card -- sort of. In his playing days, he made the Reds as an outfielder in 1963 and 1964. When that didn't work out he moved to the mound, where he went 14-8 in '67. He later served as a pitching coach in the majors and went 4-1 as the Blue Jays' interim manager in 1997.

Vince Spadea: Don't call Spadea a bore. He made the Top 20 in the world tennis rankings; penned a best-selling book about his life on the ATP Tour; and became a first if not a trend-setter: a tennis-playing rapper who performed on the "Today" show, among others.

Joker Phillips: James Phillips is now being taken seriously as a football coach, having taken Kentucky to a bowl game in his first season as the boss after serving as an assistant at UK and four other programs.