Allentown Morning Call - June 1, 1980

Schmidt hits Nos. 15, 16 for Carlton


CHICAGO (AP) – Mike Schmidt's home-run hitting in Wrigley field has become legend, but the Philadelphia slugger insists it wasn't always so. 


"I've had great success in the last four or five years here," said Schmidt, who blasted two homers yesterday to lead Steve Carlton and the Phillies to a 7-0 victory over Chicago. 


"When I first came to this park I had a lot of trouble hitting," said Schmidt. "It took me awhile to learn that you don't have to pull everything to hit it out. All you have to do is sit back and wait and don't overreact." 


Schmidt sat back and waited, "went with the pitch" and homered onto the right field catwalk.


"It was a good pitch out and away," said Schmidt. "I got the meat part of the bat on it. I'll admit the wind took it out but even on a normal day it would at least have been a double. But I'll take the homer." 


His homer in the seventh, and major league-leading No. 16, came off reliever Bill Caudill.


"It was a fastball, out," said Schmidt. "I know Caudill has a good fastball and when the count went to 2-2 1 figured he'd challenge me." 


Carlton didn't get a chance to complete his third shutout of the season and was lifted by Manager Dallas Green in the seventh. 


"He pitched three very quick innings in a row," said Green, "and he struggled a little in the seventh, so I decided to give him a rest. Shutouts and complete games aren't important to me and I'm sure they're not to Lefty (Carlton)." 


Carlton was asked the same question but refused to answer. 


Schmidt, who now has 24 career homers in Wrigley Field and 34 against the Cubs overall, slugged a two-run homer to feature a three-run third, walked in a three-run fourth and homered again to lead off the seventh.


It was the fifth time Schmidt has hit two home runs in a game in Wrigley Field, where he slammed four in a row on April 17, 1976. 


Carlton, 9-2, allowed only four singles in the seven innings he worked. He struck out 11 for the fourth time this season and didn't walk a man. Dickie Noles finished up. 


Lonnie Smith doubled in the third and scored on a single by Pete Rose before Schmidt homered, an opposite field shot to the right field catwalk.


Smith and Greg Luzinski each singled in a run in the fourth with another scoring on Mike Vail's throwing error. Schmidt drilled his 16th homer onto the left field catwalk to open the seventh. 


Willie Hernandez, 1-4, was the loser. When he was lifted in the fourth, Hernandez threw his glove toward the dugout, but missed as it landed in the first row. He then tossed a chest protector onto the field.

If Jake can’t remember, it never happened in L.V. baseball


By Dan Shope, Call Sports Writer


He looks like a grandpop who stops by the old ballpark to catch a few innings. But he never cheers for the home team, swears at the ump or tells long stories. 


This man is different. 


Never without a Phillies cap to shade his eyes, the old guy watches. He rarely takes his eyes from the field. After a big play, he leans back in his lawn chair and writes a few lines in his notebook. 


Following a few innings, he grins with satisfaction. He closes his book, folds up his chair and saunters back to his car. 


He doesn't care about the final score. It’s the ballplayers he's interested in.


Jake Yakubecek, who is currently enjoying his 69th baseball season, is not your average senior citizen. Neither is he your average fan. 


Jake is not a fan at all. He's renowned as the No. 1 expert for Lehigh Valley baseball. And he has the numbers to prove it. 


He played ball in Whitehall for 14 years, umpired in the Valley for 27 and scouted for 35. 


And as he approaches his 70th birthday, Jake has worked for the Philadelphia Phillies longer than any other major league scout has been with a team. He's the second oldest scout in baseball. 


Certainly, Jake has seen many great ballplayers come and go. The best, he says, was Curt Simmons. And ironically, it was Simmons who helped Jake get his start with the Phillies. 


"We both grew up in Egypt," Jake said. "He lived next door and we were very friendly, playing basketball, football and baseball down in the local park. 


"Curt played three sports and played Legion ball. I was a coach in the Twilight League and Curt played for me in 1947. He already got publicity in his sophomore year at Whitehall, 1946. 


"He played in the All-East Game with the American Legion in 1945. His team was managed by Babe Ruth. The West was managed, I think, by Ty Cobb. He won the award as the American Boy of 1945 after that game.”


So a lot of clubs were after Simmons. And Jake, being his close friend and coach, was an important man for the teams to befriend.


"In 1946, 1 met Herb Pennock, the general manager of the Phillies, and William Cy Morgan, who was the Phillies scout for around here," Jake said. "I promised them that I'd do everything in my power to see that Curt would sign with the Phillies. 


Curt did. And Jake was rewarded with a scouting job. Of course, his full time jobs at Bethlehem Steel and later as a deputy warden of the Lehigh County Jail were still secure. 


Jake kept on coaching, umping and scouting. And he traveled to Florida nearly every spring to help umpire intrasquad games. This past year, he was honored with a lifetime pass to all Phillies games.


But his first love besides the Phillies is Lehigh Valley baseball. And although it's changed through the years, he's still proud of it. 


"It's one of the best localities in the United States for baseball, other than Arizona and California," he said. "A lot of baseball is played here. Tri-County, Blue Mountain, Legion, the Allentown Wings…”


Jake believes players are just as talented today as when he first started scouting. But he says they're different. 


"Ballplayers of years gone by were more hungry, he said. "They loved the game more. In those days, your best friend was your enemy. 


"Today, the talent is there, but there's so much more to distract the kids… too much TV or everybody has a car. In those days we didn't have those distractions.


"Every community had a good ball team… Catty, Northampton, Slatington, Fullerton, Cementon." 


Jake may walk slowly, but he hasn't shortened his baseball schedule. 


Each morning he awakes, walks down to his cellar and checks out a chart on the wall. If the weather looks good, he plans a drive to a game as far away as Wilkes-Barre. If rain is in the forecast, he stays nearby. 


"I cover 120 games a year," he said. "And I drive maybe 10,000 miles. I'm salaried. And the Phillies pay the expenses for all those trips. They've treated me well. That's why I've stayed with them.


"I love sports. All of them. I used to sit and listen to tennis on the radio 40 years ago."


Jake has watched other players from the Valley make names for themselves. Like Gary Lavelle, a Liberty grad with the San Francisco Giants. 


But a few others "just didn't pan out… you know, girls and everything else." 


Presently, Jake has four Valley athletes on the top of his scouting list.


“Two of them are from Easton," he said. "Yup. Bryan Kostishion, a fine junior pitcher and outfielder, and Lendell Jones, a good senior shortstop. 


"And then there's Andy Baranek of Central Catholic. He's a great ballplayer. But he's going to the University of Delaware. 


"The fourth guy I like is a junior from Parkland named Larry Moser, a pitcher and an outfielder. He's only a junior and has another year. 


"These kids have the best possibilities." 


Of course, Jake admits he wins some and loses others. In fact, he said he never was all that impressed with Lavelle. 


Jake judges players for four qualities… running, throwing, fielding and hitting.


"My theory is that running and throwing are God-given talents. he said. "I always use Larry Bowa as an example. He had the God-given talents to run and throw, but by mere practice and practice he became a defensive ballplayer and a switch-hitter. 


"If you can do all four, then you're a major leaguer." 


Jake has watched many prospects become stars. But more never put all four ingredients together. And that disappoints him. 


Of course, there's one other thing that frustrates him. It's as obvious as the cap on his head, but he never lets on. 


Still, I couldn't resist asking him about it. 


"Hey, Jake. When are the Phils gonna win the World Series?" 


I didn't expect an answer. And I didn't get one, either.

Little Leaguers were the real winners in baseball settlement


By Jack McCallum, Call Sports Writer


PHILADELPHIA – The real winner in baseball's recently-settled labor dispute was not management or the players, or even the fans as many assume. The real winner was Little League Baseball. 


Now, before you run a check for strange chemicals in my supply, let me explain. 


Each summer major league baseball provides an outlet for the frustrations of the American fan. He can get home from work tired and hot and underpaid and mad at the boss and unhappy with the way the pork chops were cooked, turn on the ballgame and get some of that out.


"What? They're paying that bum Rose 800 grand to do that? He's a bum." There, now, he feels better. 


Were there no major league baseball this summer, the fan would have to look elsewhere for that outlet. Pro soccer? Nah, what's the use of hollering at somebody if they can't understand you. The wife? Nah, you can do that any time. Besides, she just finished the new self-defense course at the Y. It's got to be baseball. 


Now, I know where that fan would be heading because my buddy, Sammy McWhooter, has already been there. Sometime last summer Sammy got tired of hollering at Pete Rose and Reggie Jackson and started going down to the local Little League field. 


I found Sammy there the other night. As I approached I saw him leap out of his seat and shake his fist in the air.


"Come on, you little twerp! "shouted Sammy. "You coulda' caught that in yer back pocket." Then he smiled and said hello. He was obviously having a good time. 


"You hoofty, get the piano of yer back! he shouted a few seconds later when the shortstop, a freckle-faced kid of 10, failed to come up with a hard smash in the hole, I'd heard enough by now. 


"Sammy, that was a tough play for a kid," I said with some good old liberal scold in my voice.


"You're nuts," Sammy answered. "I've seen Bowa make that play. I've seen Concepcion make that play. What's the matter with that kid?" 


"Well, he's not a professional after all, Sammy. How can you expect… 


"Hey, look, that kid's been coasting for how many years now? Eight? Nine? He gets up, his mother's got breakfast ready. He goes to school, his father drives him. Look, the gravy train's got to stop somewhere." 


Before I could protest again, Sammy was up out of his seat. "You idiot, what are you taking the pitcher out for now?" Sammy shouted to the manager, who also happened to be our mailman. "You couldn't manage your way out of your own dining room, you bum." He sat down with a smile. 


"Sammy, that guy's not supposed to be Gene Mauch or Billy Martin," I said with all the indignance I could muster. "He's just a guy off the street like you and me. And he's volunteering his…


"Volunteering?" Sammy sneered. "How about that free jersey he gets?" 


"You mean the one that says Cox's Auto Body on it? Surely, you don't…


''And the picnic at the end of the season? How about that? And the trip to the Phillies' game the league takes every year. You think that clown pays for that? Hey, this guy comes out here every year lookin' for the free lunch and he couldn't even manage his own bee collection much less a baseball team. I could do twice the job that clown could ever hope to do.”


I was about to suggest that Sammy should do just that when he leaped from his seat again and began lambasting the umpire after a close call at second. I couldn't watch anymore; the umpire had fixed our sink just a few days before. 


Anyway, Sammy was having too good a time without me. As I walked home I realized how fortunate Little League Baseball was that there was a major league season. 


When I walked into the house my wife was looking at the Yankee game over a book. Reggie Jackson had just struck out with the bases loaded. 


"Is that why they're paying that guy 500 grand a year?" she asked. "What a bum!"