Missouri’s all-time leading receiver is now a member of the Chicago Bears. Chicago took Jefferson City native, Justin Gage, in the fifth round of last weekends NFL Draft. In his time at Mizzou Gage set eight season and career school receiving records. But Gage’s exploits at Missouri also set conference marks as well. His 200 catches for 2,704 yards and 18 touchdowns was the best ever in the history of the Big 12. He was a Big 12 first-team selection each of his last two seasons. Now he joins a Chicago Bears team that was 24th in the league in receiving in 2003 averaging just 207.3 yards in the air last season. Marty Booker was the team’s only standout, catching 91 passes. Bears GM Jerry Angelo said he hoped Gage and fellow draftee Dobby Wade of Arizona push the starters in training camp. Gage is one of four former Tigers to hook up with NFL teams this week. Fellow Jeff City graduate, Kirk Farmer signed a free agent deal with the Rams, defensive tackle Keith Wright was taken in the sixth round by the Texans and defensive back Taurus Ferguson signed went the free agent route with the Raiders.
Archives for April 2003
The Cardinals were 2-4 on their latest road trip and that required a 20-inning game. They came home and unleashed their frustrations on the Mets with a 13-3 win at Busch Stadium. St. Louis jumped all over Mets starter Al Leiter, taking a 4-0 lead in the first. Albert Pujols, Edgar Renteria and Scott Rolen drove in runs with doubles in the inning. Rolen and Renteria finished with four RBI’s apiece. Pitcher Matt Morris went six strong innings to get his second win of the season allowing two runs off five hits, two walks and five strikeouts. The Cardinals remained two games behind the first-place Cubs who beat Giants 4-2.
Does a two game losing streak constitute a slump? For the Kansas City Royals in 2003 it does. They dropped their second straight with a 7-2 loss at Boston. The Royals took a 2-0 lead with Carlos Beltran’s inside the park homer in the thid and Mike DiFelice’s tradtional round-tripper in the fourth. But starter Chris George allowed a run in the fifth and three more in the sixth to surrender the lead. The Red Sox piled on with three more in the bottom of the ninth to put it out of reach. George, who dropped to 3-2 on the season lasted 5 1/3 innings, was charged with three earned runs to get the loss. Tim Wakefield went six for the Sox to get his third win of the season. Tonight’s game has been moved one hour from 5:05 local time to 6:05.
At T.R. Hughes Ballpark in O’Fallon the sound of wood hitting the bat was heard. Saint Louis and Mizzou played their fourth annual Wooden Bat game. The Tigers liked it, while the Billikens are probably ready for their trusty aluminum bats. Mizzou took the game 6-0. Junior Danny Hill threw 7 1/3 innings of shut out ball to get the win. A four-run third inning put the Tigers on top. Kyle Johnson’s two-run homer in the eighth made it 6-0. Mizzou improved to 29-15 on the season, while the Billikens dropped to 15-24. It was MU’s 14th straight win over SLU.
Congresswoman Karen McCarthy of Kansas City is extending her leave of absence from Congress for another week while she undergoes treatment for alcohol abuse. McCarthy entered the program late last month at an undisclosed location. An aide says he doesn’t know if McCarthy will ask for another extension of the leave later. McCarthy is in her fifth term as a member of Congress.
Pfizer says it’s going to keep its research unit in St. Louis and expand it. The unit had been owned by Pharmacia Corporation, with offices in Creve Coeur, Chesterfield, and at the Washington University School of medicine. One-thousand people work for the unit now. Pfizer is the world’s biggest pharmaceutical company. Among the widely-used drugs developed by the group in the St. Louis area – Celebrex, Bextra, Dynastat, and Somavert.
A state income tax plan described by one State Senator as a choice between simplicity and self-determination has won approval by the State Senate. Senator Mike Gibbons of Kirkwood has won Senate approval of his plan to decouple Missouri’s income tax system from the federal tax code. If the House approves the decoupling, Missouri’s income tax structure will be determined by the Legislature, not defined by federal income tax policies enacted by Congress.
Several state lawmakers who are working on raising much-needed dollars have been talking about increasing taxes on casinos. Casino operators have made it clear they would prefer to see their taxes remain at current levels. But Kevin Mullally, the Executive Director of the State Gaming Commission, says the casinos probably would accept a slight tax hike if they received something else from the state – elimination of the loss limits. As things stand now, there is a $500 loss limit, per gambler, per two-hour period spent on one of casino boats. There is no such limit in Illinois, and St. Louis casino operators say this hurts their profits.
A compromise moves a nursing home reform bill easily through the House and back to the Senate, where it is expected to be received favorably. The House sponsor agreed to remove a provision calling for increased Medicaid reimbursement to nursing homes, totalling as much as $17-Million a year. Critics say that would have killed the bill in this tight budget year. Still, the compromise doesn’t sit well with Representative Rod Jetton of Marble Hill who says falling Medicaid reimbursement rates have hurt the ability of nursing homes to attract quality workers. The House sends the Senate a bill much like the one it approved earlier. There is one big difference. The House stripped provisions that would have allowed video-tapes of residents to be admitted in court. The bill cracks down on poor nursing homes with stiff fines for endangering the lives of residents and for violating state codes.
The State Supreme Court has decided a man on Missouri’s death row for a murder nearly 18 years ago should be released. In a four-three decision, the Court ruled Joseph Amrine is innocent of the murder of Gary Barber in October, 1985. Both Amrine and Barber were prisoners in the state penitentiary in Jefferson City at the time. The Court’s order calls for the conditional release of Amrine within 30 days unless the state elects to file new charges against him in relation to the murder of which he was convicted. A spokesman for the State Supreme Court believes Amrine has already served his time for the offense that sent him to prison in the first place.