Gettysburg Times - October 14, 1980
Leonard To Oppose Walk In Opener
By John Nelson, The Associated Press
PHILADELPHIA (AP) - Darrell Porter, the Kansas City Royais' All-Star catcher, contends he is not much of a baseball fan, but he knows what makes a pitching rotation go around.
A consummate handler of pitchers, Porter believes the bulk of the work sn the 1980 World Series against Philadelphia will has to be assumed by right-hander Dennis Leonard and lefty Larry Gura
"We got to rely on Gura and Leonard simply because of what they have done for us all year long." Porter said.
Leonard, the Royals' only 20-game winner, will oppose Philadelphia rookie Bob Walk,11-7 during the season, in the opening game of the best-of-seven World Series here tonight (starting time 8:30 pm EDT).
Royals Manager Jim Frey tabbed Leonard in an effort to negate the Phillies righthanded swinging power of Mike Schmidt, Greg Luzinski, Garry Maddox and Bob Boone.
"Dennis is probably the hardest thrower consistently on the club." Porter said. "His fastball is the key He throws a hard slider, a curveball and a changeup. His slider and curve are both good pitches when he's on."
Porter said Leonard gets into trouble if he gets in a groove, spotting his fastball in the same place all the time.
Gura, 18-10 with a key victory in Game One of the American League Championship Series against the New York Yankees, probably will start Game Two of the Series, with Rich Gale starting the third game. Frey said Paul Sphttorff, Kansas City's fourth starter, will be used as an emergency starter.
"Gura is not an overpowering pitcher." Porter said "He relies more on finesse, control and mixing speeds. Gale is a power pitcher with good
movement on his
fastball. It moves either way, and it's not straight too often."
Philadelphia Manager Dallas Green more or less was forced to go with the 23-year-old Walk in Game One.
"You people asked me last night if I was going to start, and I thought. -Why me?'" said Walk, who did not learn he would start today until Monday afternoon. "Then, all of a sudden, it dawned on me. We had used all our other starting pitchers in the last game of the playoffs."
In order to win Sunday night's game in Houston 8-7 in 10 innings, Green had to use starters Marty Bystrom, a rookie, Larry Christenson and Dick Ruthven. Only left-hander Steve Carlton, who pitched the night before, and Walk were unused. Carlton will start Game Two of the Series here Wednesday.
Walk also is a power pitcher with a slider, curveball and straight changeup. which he says he probably does not throw often enough. Walk got off to an 8-l start this season before control problems sent him to the bullpen.
"Sometimes I try to overpower the hitters — I try to pitch them too fine, and that's when I get into trouble said Walk, who saw no playoff
action. "I'm nervous
and excited about starting the World Series, but no more than games I've started before. I don't know how I'll feel tomorrow, though."
The Royals arrived in Philadelphia from New York early Monday morning after taking a day off from travel and then awaiting the outcome of the Phillies-Astros game at Newark Airport. Porter said he had not seen the scouting reports on Philadelphia and didn't know too much about the team.
"I'm not really a baseball fan. I like to play the game, but I don't know much about the National League," Porter said. "I have to rely on the television and scouting reports. "
Frey did not want to watch Sunday night's NL finale at the airport, so he played cards.
"I played hearts with a bunch of cowboys — Jamie Quirk, Dave Chalk and the two Bretts (Ken and George)," the Royals manager said. "I didn't want to root for either team. I'm too superstitious. I thought it might come back and bite me."
Kansas City went through a full workout at Veteran's Stadium here Monday afternoon. The Phillies, meanwhile, didn't get back into town until about 3pm Monday, came straight to the ballpark and worked out for only about a half hour after Kansas City.
A sparse but boisterous group of fans gathered at the stadium to greet their Phillies, who are participating in their first World Series since losing in four games to New York in 1950.
The Royals, born in 1969 are in their first-ever World Series.
"It's going to be a good one," said the Royals' AL batting champion, George Brett. "I can tell you that."
Phillies Capture Hearts of Fans in Philadelphia
By The Associated Press
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — The Phillies Finally Fantastic.
That's what everybody's saying around here.
Women cried. Men toasted their National League heroes at local taverns and kids sported Phillies T-shirts and hats.
They did it: They didn't choke, roll over and play dead or shatter like fine china, as they've been wont to do in past postseason championship games.
This time the Phillies brought the NL pennant home from the Houston Astrodome where they eked out an 8-7 extra-inning win over the Astros Sunday night.
In return, they got the hearts of adoring fans who'll either be near a television, radio or at Veterans Stadium tonight for Game One of the best-of-seven World Series against the Kansas City Royals, the American League champs.
But most of the conquering heroes were either tired or aloof Monday when they arrived here.
Despite thousands of cheering fans, most of the players, including sluggers Mike Schmidt and Greg Luzinski. headed straight for chartered buses.
Only a few gathered on a platform to acknowledge the crowd.
But even if it appeared to be a case of unrequited love, the fans remained a rowdy, happy crowd, pressed up to 10 deep along about 300 yards of fencing at the airport.
There were broken beer bottles underfoot, wild college boys blowing long plastic horns, young girls in down jackets and designer jeans, and shivering children.
"Get your National League champion Phillies pennants now, a real collector's item," shouted a vendor.
Clutching a new Phillies pennant, red-faced against the chill, Sister Theresa of St. Thomas More Church in Cherry Hill, N.J. strained hopelessly to see over the ranks of fans between her and the fence at the airport.
"I watched the game Sunday night and prayed my heart out," she said. "I called up KYW radio to ask what Tug McGraw's real name is, so I could pray to his patron saint in the last inning. His name is Francis Edwin, did you know that?" she asked. McGraw's actual first name is Frank.
"I don't know which St. Francis heard my prayers but one of them was sure listening," she said.
Ruly Carpenter, Phillies owner told the crowd, "I hope you don't have to wait 30 years for another one of these," as he hoisted up the NL trophy.
Philadelphia area businessmen hope so, too, and that's because the celebrants and fans are pouring in from all around the world and that means money.
By late Monday representatives of the city's Convention and Visitors Bureau were referring fans in pursuit of first class accommodations to Wilmington Del. 30 miles away.
The crowd includes an estimated 1,000 sports writers, while another 1,200 baseball executives are spread throughout the city.
For the city's cab drivers, hotel keepers, bellhops and bar owners. the Series will be an immediate economic boost worth at least $4 million.
At Philadelphia's Franklin Plaza Hotel, Joseph Thomaseth, director of advertising and sales, is devising an unlikely strategy to defeat the Royals.
We're going to kill them with kindness, smother them with goodness," he said, grinning and winking.
Rose Amazes Anderson
By Hal Bock, The Associated Press
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — It was a warm reunion, almost like a father greeting a long-lost son when silverhaired Sparky Anderson strode into the Philadelphia Phillies' locker room and threw his arms over the brawny shoulders of Pete Rose.
"Congratulations, kid, a fine series. You were as great as ever." said Sparky to the 39-year-old first baseman of the National League champions, who had just clawed their way into the World Series in a cliffhanging playoff against Houston.
"Thanks. Skip." replied Rose, his face breaking into a wide grin. "It felt like the good old days."
Then the pair went to a private corner to reminisce about their four World Series together when Sparky was the pilot and Rose the main sparkplug of the "Big Red Machine" of the Cincinnati Reds.
From Cincinnati they separated and took different forks in the road, Anderson to become manager of a developing Detroit Tigers team and Rose to Philadelphia to resuscitate a team pennantless for the last 30 years
"What an amazing guy," Sparky said to newsmen later when Rose went out to first base at Veterans Stadium to prepare for tonight's World Series opener against the Kansas City Royals.
"There never has been — and never will be — a man who gave more to the game than Pete Rose. I am not talking about what he has done. There have been many guys with greater skills who have never made it.
"I am taking about the intangibles — the effort and enthusiasm he puts into every game. He loves it. He never thinks of his million-dollar salary. Put a glove and a bat in his hand and he's like a little kid again.
"I've often said that if Pete committed a murder and was arrested, he would tell the cops, "Give me 2½ hours. I've got a game to play. Then I'll be back in."
Undoubtably this stubby brawler from the toughest playgrounds of Cincinnati is the catalyst of baseball's 1980 championships, the man the poised-and-rested Royals must subdue if they are to prevail.
A competitive flame shoots from every pore of his leathery skin. He itches to play and battles to win. His intensity both in the field and at bat seeps through the television tubes and becomes obvious to the millions watching from the comfort of their sitting rooms.
Rose, a 400 hitter in the playoffs, has already erased hitting records of such immortals as Ty Cobb and Honus Wagner. He admits that baseball is an elixir to his soul.
"Baseball is my life." he said. "I'm trying to give something back. When I'm out there, it's like being in some sort of isolation booth. Nothing distracts rne and my concentration is good.
"My four World Series in Cincinnati were very satisfying. But this one is more satisfying to me because the people of Philadelphia have put so much faith in me and the other guys and haven't won in such a long time."
White Playing For Former Teammates
By Hal Bock, The Associated Press
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — When he takes the field tonight in the opening game of the 1980 World Series, Kansas City second baseman Frank White will be playing for himself, his family and his teammates, of course.
But he'll also be playing for 49 other guys.
They are names vou wouldn't know, but people White remembers. They were his colleagues in the first class of the Kansas City Baseball Academy, an ambitious venture in plaver development which never quite paid off, unless you count KC's second base-shortstop combination.
White and his partner, U L Washington, an alumnus of the third class, are the only prominent major leaguers produced by the Academy. But some people will tell you that's quite enough return for the Royals' investment.
The academy was located in Sarasota. Fla., and White earned his way there at a tryout camp in 1970. "There were 600 players over two days," White said. "They chose eight to go."
Who were the other seven?
"You wouldn't know their names," the second baseman said.
When White reached Sarasota. he found a remote baseball camp set on 260 acres well removed from the beaten path. "It was isolated, remote." he said "It was very regimented. Junior college in the morning, baseball in the afternoon. No television, no family."
It meant 10 months away from his wife and infant son. The salary was $100 per month for the first 90 days with increases to $150, $200 and $250. "We spent most of our money in long disance calls back home," White said.
The Baseball Academy staff drove the students hard.
"It wasvery frustrating, sometimes," said White "You couldn't be yourself. You lost all your freedom. The only reliefwas to go into the batting cage and just wear yourself out.
White spent 18 months at the Academy from August 1970 to March 1972. Then he was given the opportunity to make a minor league club in tne Royals' organization and after that he moved steadily up until he reached the majors in 1973, the first Academy product to make it.
Now he's considered one of the very best second basemen in baseball, and when the Royals swept to the American League pennant he was named the Most Valuable Player in the playoffs.
Since White and Washington, a number of other players have moved from the Academy to the Majors. The roster includes Oakland infielder Jeff Cox and St Louis pitcher Tom Bruno.
But White remains in a class by himself. He was the first one to make it and he thinks about the other 49 who didn't.