One of life's little mysteries reared its ugly head again last week.

Why is my favorite Eagle always cut, released, allowed to leave, or just plain dumped?

It's uncanny. Duce Staley, Jeremiah Trotter I, Brian Mitchell, Troy Vincent, Hugh Douglas, Terrell Owens, Jeff Garcia, and Jeremiah Trotter II. All personal faves. All gone.

The Phillies, on the other hand, have it right. As soon as I work up a healthy disdain for a certain guy, he's gone. Curt Schilling, Scott Rolen, David Bell, Mike Lieberthal, Bobby Abreu. All easy to dislike. All gone. (And can Pat Burrell be far behind?)

So in the wake of Trotter's departure, I face the disturbing problem of waiting for a new favorite to emerge. (You don't pick a favorite player any more than you pick a spouse; you wait for the right person to emerge.)

So while I have some candidates in mind, I'm not going to reveal their identities for fear of inadvertently delivering the Terrible Swift Sword.

I won't tell you (or Andy Reid) who he is. But you're going to miss him.

PhilaTrivia. The Anaheim Angels' Garret Anderson drove in 10 runs Tuesday night, a nearly historic outburst.

The American League record for RBIs in one game is 11, by Tony Lazzeri of the Yankees on May 24, 1936.

The major-league record is 12, shared by the St. Louis Cardinals' Jim Bottomley, who accomplished the feat in 1924, and one other player.

Can you name him?

Good company. Former Eagles defensive coordinator Emmitt Thomas was placed on the ballot for possible election to the Pro Football Hall of Fame last week.

For those younger fans who remember him only as an elderly coach, be advised that Em Thomas was a heck of a player.

In a 13-year career with Kansas City, he had 58 interceptions - ranking eighth in NFL history - and returned five for touchdowns.

He started in the Super Bowl after the 1970 season, when the Chiefs stifled Minnesota, 23-7, and grabbed an interception in that game, too.

That team included Hall of Famers Len Dawson, Buck Buchanan, Willie Lanier, Bobby Bell and Jan Stenerud and was coached by Hall member Hank Stram.

"I thought there was no way I'd ever get a chance," Thomas told reporters. "Just to be mentioned with these guys who are already in is a great honor. Whatever comes from it, it's still a great honor."

Sweet and slick. The Rawlings Co. released its all-time Gold Glove team last week, and most of the selections were easy calls.

Willie Mays patrols center field, with Roberto Clemente on one side and Junior Griffey on the other.

Brooks Robinson is covered with gold at third base, as are Ozzie Smith at short and Joe Morgan at second.

The catcher is - no surprise - Johnny Bench. The pitcher is future Hall of Famer Greg Maddux, who actually fields his position as an infielder.

All of those were easy choices. The first baseman was a pleasant surprise, even to himself.

"I'm thrilled to be recognized as one of those who worked hard at what is an underappreciated skill," former Dodger Wes Parker told reporters. "I'm particularly pleased to be the lone representative of the Dodgers and the only awardee who is not and will not be in the Hall of Fame. This is my Hall of Fame."

And well-deserved.

Finally. In an attempt to satisfy the haters who think the media are sweeping the case involving Andy Reid's son under the rug, let me offer you this.

What Britt Reid, or any other adult, does in public is public information. If an arrest is involved, it goes on the public record.

What Andy Reid says to his son in private is private. What counselors, lawyers, members of the clergy or doctors say to either party is private.

If you are arrested with a gun and drugs on the public highways, there's a chance I'm going to write about you.

What you tell your father is your business.

Trivia answer. The record of 12 RBIs in a game is shared by former Phillie Mark Anthony "Hard Hittin' " Whitten, who did it in 1993 while with St. Louis.

Whitten was traded from the Cardinals to Boston in 1995 and later that season was traded to the Phillies for third baseman Dave Hollins. He was released by the Phillies in 1996.

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