Rich Get Richer: Blue Jays Trade For Rickey Henderson

OAKLAND, Calif. - Rickey Henderson, traded last night by the Oakland Athletics to Toronto, is looking forward to helping the Blue Jays win the AL East.

The trade was agreed to by Toronto, Oakland and the outfielder, who had a no-trade clause in his contract.

Henderson was not available for comment after the trade was officially agreed upon, but he expressed some reluctance to waive the no-trade clause beforehand, hoping to get compensation for agreeing to the waiver.

"Everything is negotiable," Henderson said. "It's a business, you know."

Sandy Alderson, the A's general manager, said it took three hours to hash out the compensation for Henderson, but declined to reveal what the player got, saying only, "There were cash considerations."

Henderson also got a guarantee from the Blue Jays that he will be allowed to become a free agent after the season.

Henderson, who signed a four-year, $12 million contract in 1990, seemed happy about the chance to leave Oakland, even before the trade was official.

"I've suffered for four years," said Henderson, who tried without success to get the A's to rework the contract. "They dogged me for four years. Everybody needs something. I need something, they need something. If they want to trade me, buy my no-trade. Then they can trade me wherever they want."

Oakland receives right-hander Steve Karsay, who was Toronto's first-round pick in 1990, and a player to be named later. Alderson

called Karsay one of the top pitching prospects in baseball.

Henderson, baseball's career stolen base leader with 1,073, is considered the greatest leadoff hitter in history and one of the few players able to carry a team by himself.

He has started games with home runs a record 62 times, is the only player in history with more than 1,000 steals. He won the AL MVP award in 1990. This year, Henderson is batting .327 with 47 RBIs and 31 stolen bases.

Henderson has a career .318 average in 18 playoff games, a .412 average in eight World Series games, and a .292 average in 10 All-Star appearances.


Tim Belcher thought contenders had soured on him during his July slump. The Chicago White Sox proved him wrong.

The AL West-leading White Sox obtained the right-hander from Cincinnati for minor-league pitchers Johnny Ruffin and Jeff Pierce.

Belcher is 9-6 with a 4.47 ERA in 22 starts. Ruffin, 22, is 3-4 with a 3.30 ERA in 29 relief appearances at Class AAA Nashville. Pierce, 24, a converted outfielder, is 3-4 with a 2.59 ERA and 18 saves at Class AA Birmingham.


The Pittsburgh Pirates traded reliever Stan Belinda to the Kansas City Royals for two minor-league pitchers.

The Pirates acquired 23-year-old John Lieber, who was a combined 11-4 with a 3.33 ERA for Wilmington of the Class A Carolina League and Memphis of the Class AA Southern League, and 22-year-old Dan Miceli, 6-4 with a 4.60 ERA for Memphis. Both will be assigned to the minors.

Belinda was 3-1 for Pittsburgh with a career-high 19 saves and had a 3.61 ERA.


-- After posting a 15-7 record in April, the Tigers slipped to 15-11 in May, 13-16 in June and slipped to 10-18 in July.

-- The Baltimore Orioles placed All-Star right-hander Mike Mussina on the 15-day disabled list Saturday, retroactive to July 22. His spot on the roster will be taken by pitcher Arthur Rhodes, who had been on the disabled list since late May.

-- Elton "Sam" Langford, a former baseball player who still shares the record for most outfield assists in a game with four, died at age 94 in Plainview, Texas. He was a left-handed hitting outfielder for the Boston Red Sox and Cleveland Indians from 1926 to 1928.