SARASOTA, Fla. -- Baseball could be headed for another labor showdown sooner than anyone suspects, said players union director Donald Fehr.
Fehr and special assistant Mark Belanger briefed the Orioles players on a variety of union issues during a lengthy meeting at Twin Lakes Park yesterday, and they warned them that the collective bargaining agreement could be reopened after this season.
The basic agreement signed before the 1990 season called for a four-year term, but included a provision that either side could reopen collective bargaining after three years. The Major League Players Association doesn't intend to exercise that option, but Fehr said that he can't speak for the owners.
"You hope it doesn't happen and I'm not predicting it's going to happen," he said, "but there is enough scuttlebutt that you can't assume it's not going to happen. I have to take it as an operating assumption that the owners will reopen, and if they do, we probably won't be sitting here at this time next year."
Horn hurts hamstring
Designated hitter Sam Horn spent a day on the sidelines after suffering a slight hamstring strain during Monday's base-running drills.
Horn slipped rounding third base and grabbed at his left thigh, but the injury is not expected to keep him out of action more than a few days.
First intrasquad game today
The Orioles will play the first of two intrasquad games today in preparation for their exhibition opener Friday in St. Petersburg. Dugout coach Davey Lopes will manage one team, and bullpen coach Elrod Hendricks will manage the other in the eight-inning workout today. The intrasquad game tomorrow will last seven innings.
Today's pitchers are to include Mike Mussina, Arthur Rhodes, Todd Frohwirth, Jim Lewis, Gregg Olson, Francisco de la Rosa, Mike Oquist, Brad Pennington and Amalio Carreno. All pitchers will throw two innings except Olson and Carreno, who will throw one.
Tomorrow's pitchers are to include Rick Sutcliffe, Storm Davis, Jose Mesa, Mike Flanagan, Richie Lewis, Mark Williamson and Alan Mills. Each will work two innings.
Manager John Oates has announced the relief pitchers for the first four exhibition games:
* Oquist, Carreno and Jim Lewis will come out of the bullpen in Friday's Grapefruit League opener against the St. Louis Cardinals.
* Pennington and Frohwirth will work in relief Saturday against the Kansas City Royals.
* Mills, Williamson, Flanagan and Olson will pitch on Sunday against the Toronto Blue Jays.
* Carreno, Richie Lewis and Jim Lewis will go on Monday against the Chicago White Sox.
Sore-armed relievers Jim Poole and Israel Sanchez will enter the bullpen rotation as soon as they are able.
Sutcliffe on Sandberg
Sutcliffe spent the past eight seasons with Ryne Sandberg playing behind him, and he was happy to hear that the Cubs second baseman had become the highest-paid player.
"If there's anyone who deserves that money, it is him," Sutcliffe said. "I'm thrilled for him. That's what the fans in Chicago wanted, for him to finish his career with the Cubs, and that's what they'll get."