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Red Barber seriously ill

Red Barber, a pioneering baseball broadcaster who is now a popular National Public Radio commentator, was in critical condition Wednesday after surgery for an intestinal blockage.

Barber, 84, was "making some slow progress" but remained in intensive care, said Tallahassee Regional Memorial Medical Center spokesman Warren Jones.

"There's really nothing from the doctors on a prognosis yet," Jones said. "When you're in critical condition, your vital signs can be unstable. He has stabilized somewhat."

Barber did not appear Friday morning on his 7:35 a.m. NPR time slot with Morning Edition host Bob Edwards, who said then that Barber was feeling "under the weather."

Barber went to the hospital that day, Jones said, and underwent surgery Saturday.

A Brooklyn Dodgers broadcaster from 1939 to 1953, Walter "Red" Barber did play-by-play of the first night baseball game and the first televised game. In 1978, he and fellow broadcaster Mel Allen became the first sportscasters inducted into the baseball Hall of Fame in 1978.

Some of his memorable expressions behind the microphone included "Oh, Doctor" for a big play, and "sitting in the catbird seat" for a big lead.

Around the majors

Mariners: A San Diego woman who said she was raped by Kevin Mitchell but refused to have him prosecuted on criminal charges has filed a lawsuit seeking monetary damages. The woman claims in the suit filed Sept. 24 that she was raped by Mitchell on Nov. 29, 1991, in his Chula Vista, Calif., home.

Red Sox: Winter Haven resident Edward G. LeRoux Jr., a former part-owner of the club who started out as an athletic trainer, has filed for bankruptcy, according to federal court papers in Boston.

Dodgers: Right-hander Tim Crews elected to become a free agent. He was 0-3 with a 5.19 ERA.

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