Atlantic City Press - April 2, 1980

After Sub-Par Season Will ‘Real’ Manny Trillo Stand Up?


CLEARWATER, Fla. (AP) – Philadelphia manager Dallas Green expects the “real” Manny Trillo to play second base for the Phillies this year, not the guy who had a season loaded with ups and downs. 


True, Trillo won his first Gold Glove in almost six years of major league ball, but he missed 40 games after being hit in the forearm on May 3 in a game against Los Angeles. He was hitting .303 at the time. When he came back, his batting stroke was somewhere in his native Venezuela. 


Trillo, obtained by the Phillies last spring in an eight-player deal, rallied in September to hit .316 (he finished at .260) but it was too late. The injury-riddled Phillies were out of the National League East race. Despite Trillo's injury, his defensive performance in 118 games enabled him to win the Gold Glove over New York's Doug lynn and the Dodgers' Davey Lopes. 


Green explained that the 164-pound Trillo is not a very strong guy basically, and needs everything going for him to perform offensively. The fracture in the forearm was disastrous to the infielder and the club. 


“Trillo hurried back too quickly from the injury,” Green admitted. “I don't think he was really sound… until September." 


Green, a manager who pulls no punches, says he really didn’t think Trillo should have won the Gold Glove. On the other hand, the manager is convinced Larry Bowa, not Cincinnati’s Dave Concepcion, earned the honor at shortstop. 


"I think the Gold Glove should go to a guy who is a 162-game guy, who on paper that year won the thing hands down,” Green declared. 


How did Trillo feel about all this? 


“It really was a frustrating season,” said Trillo. “I wanted to show what kind of trade the Phillies made for me. The beginning was so good… Then I break my arm and I lose my swing for another month.” 


Trillo felt that despite the unexpected Gold Glove award he cheated the fans.


“I really didn't get the chance to show the people what kind of ball player I really am,” said Trillo at the Phillies’ spring training camp. “I didn’t get the chance to prove how good a deal they made.” 


Trillo said he was surprised with the Gold Glove award, but noted that things have a way of evening out. He noted that there were years when he felt he should have won the honor and didn’t because a Joe Morgan was around, and Morgan’s all-around performance, including offense, overshadowed Trillo’s glove. 


“Right now you don’t get the Gold Glove because of your glove, but what kind of overall season you have,” Trillo noted. “I think if you’re going to give the Gold Glove it should be based on who gets the most chances and makes the least errors… It should be for the guy with the good hands.” 


Trillo is going to bat second for the Phillies, and with Pete Rose leading off you can expect a lot of hit and run tactics.

Rain, Rangers Leave Phils Soggy


POMPANO BEACH, Fla. (AP) – Ferguson Jenkins, John Henry Johnson and a sudden cloudburst combined to limit Philadelphia to just five hits Tuesday as the Texas Rangers defeated the Phillies 4-1 in a rain-shortened exhibition baseball game. 


The Rangers, now 10-14 in exhibition, scored in the first inning when Bump Wills singled, stole second and third and came home on Al Oliver's sacrifice fly to left. 


Texas scored three runs in the fourth off Phillie starter Randy Lerch. A single by Buddy Bell and walks to Richie Zisk and Billy Sample loaded the bases with two outs. Jim Sundberg singled to drive in two runs and Pepe Frias followed with a base hit to score Sample. 


The Phillies, 10-9 in exhibition play, scored their only run in the eighth inning after Pete Rose reached first on an error by Ranger shortstop Nelson Norman. Bake McBride singled and Mike Schmidt walked to load the bases. Johnson then walked Greg Luzinski to force in a run.