Wilmington Evening Journal - October 22, 1980
Phillies enter record books as baseball’s world champs
Victory city erupts with joy
By Terry Bivens, Staff Writer
It started building in the bottom of the eighth inning at the Stadium Bar at Broad and Snyder.
The wild-eyed crowd started screaming, "Three more outs" and a drunken young woman in a red sweater staggered into the street and fell flat on the pavement.
The frenzy surged and then ebbed while Phillies relief ace Tug McGraw – faithfully following the script of a heart-attack season – struck out the first hitter, then loaded the bases.
But after McGraw pumped a third strike past Royal Willie Wilson to clinch the Phils' first World Series victory ever, it officially burst loose. Philadelphia, not Mount St. Helens, had become the eruption capital of the nation.
At the Stadium Bar, an elderly man wearing a faded meat company jacket started crying. Strangers kissed and hugged. A man in a black silk shirt and gold neck chains whistled a full-beer-can fastball flat against the ceiling, showering everybody at the bar.
From sophisticated Center City to the working-class neighborhoods of South Philly, it was a city gone absolutely berserk under an October baseball moon.
Thousands of people flowed into the streets – some on foot, running and strutting with Phillies banners, others driving, honking their horns and slapping hands with anyone close.
United by a bickering, talented team that had finally made up for the years of disappointment, they poured out of bars, leaned out windows, whooping and flapping their arms, and danced cheek-to-check in the street.
Through traffic on Broad Street came to a halt, "Phillie Express" cars and vans zoomed by on side streets, with riders on hoods and roofs yelling and pointing their index fingers skyward.
The air was full of the sound of breaking glass and the smell of gunpowder from firecrackers, Roman candles and smoke bombs. At one Center City townhouse, a volley was fired from a paper-packed flintlock musket to mark the history of it all.
Toilet paper and empty wine bottles lined the steps of the staid Academy of Music. There were chains of Irish jigs and at least one man running stark naked – except, of course, for a Phillies cap – down Broad Street.
Everywhere, the message was the same: "We're Number One."
"This is the greatest thing that ever happened to Philadelphia," said 20-year-old Melanie Guida, who lives a few blocks from the Stadium Bar. "I just never expected it. The Phillies always seem to play good during the middle of the season, then flop at the end. It's wonderful."
"I can't believe it," said another young woman, perched on her boyfriend's shoulders and jockeying for position in front of a television camera truck. "The Flyers did it, but the Phillies? I can't believe it."
Blocks away, a man in a tuxedo led cheers from the balcony of the Fairmount Hotel. In front of RN's Bar at 18th and Lombard, an on-duty policeman accepted a cold beer from a gang of revelers, then graciously ushered them across the intersection with a "Let's cross now, children."
The police in the city – like their counterparts on horseback and with patrol dogs at Veterans Stadium – were ready. Police cruisers and vans were posted at most major intersections and officers with dogs were stationed in the subway.
Although there were some cars rocked and a few scuffles between folice and the more boisterous celerants, no serious injuries were reported as the citywide party wound its way into the wee hours this morning. Most officers agreed the crowd was reasonably calm – in spite of enough openly displayed beer, wine, liquor and – natch – champagne to float the Saratoga.
"They're being pretty good tonight," said one policeman at Broad and Spruce. But the numbers are incredible. I'll bet half of 'em aren't even Phillies fans."
The policeman went running for his helmet when a beer bottle smashed against a nearby wall. Immediately, he was grabbed and danced around by a young woman with a tambourine.
Many, however, were real, lifelong Phillies fans who had suffered for decades. For them, a quiet smile was enough.
Phillies bury old ‘ghosts’ forever
Years of frustration end with world title
By Ray Finocchiaro, Staff Writer
PHILADELPHIA – The ghosts are buried forever.
The Phillies interred the evil spirits that haunted them nearly a century, winning the World Series with a 4-1 victory over the Kansas City Royals last night in Game Six.
The Phillies are exorcised – and world champions. It is a mantle they did not expect to wear in this summer of discontent and bitterness, which is why it looks so regal on their shoulders today after six weeks of trying so hard and playing so well.
"I think Larry Bowa said it best," said Manager Dallas Green, dripping champagne from every pore. "He said, 'We had some ghosts to put to and we did it. We had won three Eastern Division championships and we had to get over the brink. They've waited a long time for this."
They all had, including the fans who had gone 30 years without, a World Series, the players who had been told to win or pack their bags, and the organization that paid huge salaries and overlooked a lot of mediocrity, finally claiming the team's first world championship in 98 years of trying.
"This team has done it together," said Green, the shrill taskmaster who wielded the whip without mercy or favor, finally getting the job done when most thought all was lost – again.
"I told them in spring training that we could win. It took us a while to get our act together. We had some sinking spells and I would cry in my beer. Finally the bickering and the infighting ended. We played clutch ballgames, come-from-behinders since Sept. 1. Fortunately, a lot of people thought that way."
And now they are laughing together over champagne instead of crying in their beer.
Across the way, in the quiet but hardly funereal Kansas City locker room, the losers sat and figured it could have been them with the smiles and the national TV cameras blinding them, even if it would've taken another night and another victory to do it.
"Feelings are hard to express," said George Brett, the Royals' golden boy who finally ran out of miracles last night. "I can forget losing in the playoffs, but I will never forget this.
"The World Series is something I'll tell my grandchildren about. I won’t tell them I played in a playoff. And when they ask who won the World Series, I'll tell them we lost the first one, but we won the second."
That, though, is up the road. It will come on the day Kansas City has gone as far as it can go. Last night the Yellow Brick Road led to Veterans Stadium. The city of Philadelphia, surprisingly still standing today, will take a long time to forget.
"This team had heart, it had character," said Green, who used those words all season, often finding them bouncing back in his face from disenchanted players with bruised egos. "But we pulled together. Since Sept. 1, this has been a helluva team."
And on television, after the world's baseball fans had seen him embrace Player Personnel Director Paul Owens and cry unashamedly with their mutual goal now a piece of irreversible history, Green lauded the team he had flayed so often and so loudly during the long, hot summer.
"This is an unbelievable baseball team right now," Green raved. "We could beat anybody in the world."
They were no doubters last night.
"This is certainly a special moment for all of us," added Green, thinking of the Phillies' organization he had served for a quarter of a century. "We've worked so hard and waited so long. I've been a Phillie for 25 years and I know what a special feeling it is.
"But it all came down to the players getting together and grinding it out. They had to do it between the white lines."
It was fittingly dramatic the way it ended, after it looked like the Phillies would breeze home behind starting pitcher Steve Carlton. Fueled by World Series MVP Mike Schmidt's two-run single with the bases loaded in the third inning off loser Rich Gale and the runs batted in by Bake McBride and Bob Boone, the Phils led 4-0 and the Royals looked like they would go quietly.
But Carlton had had enough in the eighth.
"Lefty and I have a pretty good rapport," said Green. "He gave me this (motioning with his thumb up) and I knew he had it tonight. He's got to be Mr. Cy Young this year. But in the eighth, he was feathering his fastball a little bit."
So after the Royals put runners on first and second with nobody out, Green waved in Tug McGraw for the fourth time in this World Series spectacle and, after allowing the Royals' only run to score on U.L. Washington's sacrifice fly, he slammed the door on the eighth.
But the ninth inning was another story. As the mounted policemen came in from the right-field bullpen, joined by helmeted policemen with German shepherds and billy clubs, the teams sensed they were on the brink of bedlam.
"It was distracting, with dogs and horses all over the place," said KC second baseman Frank White, who was to play a featured role in the night's most bizarre – and most memorable – play. "Who wants to run into a horse? It just didn't seem like baseball anymore. I've never seen anything like it, except in Venezuela."
This was soon to be Valhalla, not Venezuela.
McGraw threw a third strike past Amos Otis, dropping the fleet center fielder under the .500 mark for the first time in this six-game carnival.
But the next three men got on base, two on singles, and White strode to the plate.
"I saw the police dogs coming on the field," said the weary McGraw, "and I told myself, 'Find something extra, find something That's what the whole team had done."
White lofted a high foul near the Phillies' dugout. As the Vet-record crowd of 65,838 roared in one voice, catcher Bob Boone and first baseman Pete Rose converged on the ball.
Boone saw the ball plop into his mitt, then – as his heart caught in his mouth – pop straight up and out and fall right into Rose's mitt.
Rose raised a clenched fist and the crowd went wild. Destiny had at last smiled on the Phillies.
"We've been practicing that trick play all year," Rose joked later.
But first there was one more batter to retire, Royals' leadoff hitter Willie Wilson, a man who had been collared the whole Series, a frustrated man who had already tied a World Series mark for futility with 11 strikeouts. But with the bases loaded and the entire Midwest helping him swing the bat, Wilson saw a chance for instant redemption.
And McGraw saw it, too.
"They had me so shook up the last inning, I can't remember anything," said McGraw. "I was trying to let them hit the ball and let my defense work for me. If I hadn't gotten Wilson out, I was going to tell Dallas that I'd had enough.”
McGraw got two quick strikes on Wilson, then a ball as the entire crowd, standing and screaming with every pitch since the inning began, let out a collective breath.
Then Tug threw one last fastball, Wilson swung and missed and the Phillies were world champions.
The ghosts were gone, buried under the artificial turf that has replaced the grass, gone with the bad memories of lost chances in other years.
The elderly man who had stood on the subway platform two hours before the game, saying he "had to see the Phillies win the World Series because I probably won't be around to see them do it again" had gotten his wish.
They all had.
Bowa savors vindication
By Hal Bodley, Sports Editor
PHILADELPHIA – Willie Wilson swung and missed and it was over. Larry Bowa stood there for a moment, undecided.
"My first thought was to get down on one knee and thank The Man Upstairs," the Phillies' shortstop said. "Then everything seemed to flash in front of me at once. I thought about the Sundays in the park when my dad hit ground balls to me. I thought about being cut from my high-school team three times. I thought about the writer who said I swung like a Little Leaguer. And I thought about all the terrible stories that had been written about me this year."
That's what went through Larry Bowa's mind in the first few minutes of the world championship he will savor for a lifetime.
When Tug McGraw fanned Wilson, the Phillies had beaten Kansas City 4-1 last night to claim their first World Series in the 98-year history of the franchise.
For the 34-year-old Bowa, the world championship was something he has dreamed about nearly every day of his life. But being in the middle of it this year made it extra special.
Larry Bowa is the first to tell you most of 1980 was a disaster for him. At one stage he was hitting only .229, was struggling afield and when the Phils dropped a double-header to Pittsburgh on Aug. 10 to fall six games behind the Pirates and Montreal, he thought the season was over.
But the Phils, and especially Bowa, turned it around. As the Phils surged to their fourth National League Eastern Division title in five years, Bowa was brilliant.
When his manager, Dallas Green, openly criticized him, he played even harder. When the Veterans Stadium fans booed him, he was even better.
And when the Phils finally landed in the World Series, Larry Bowa was superb. He set a record at shortstop, starting seven double plays. At bat, he hit safely in every game and led his team with a total of nine hits for a .375 batting average.
"I can play this game, there's no doubt about that," Bowa said last night in the boisterous Phils' dressing room as champagne trickled down his face. "I had a horsebleep first four months. Everybody's entitled to that. There were some reasons. One was those drugs stories, something there was no validity to.
"When the fans boo, they don't boo me as an individual. They boo No. 10 who's hitting .229. I walk down the street and nobody boos me, but they see this number on the field end they boo.
"That night of the Chicago game in September, I thought the fans were the worst I had ever played before and I said so. But that's 20,000 people, not 2.7 million. That night, they were lousy. I just can't understand why you have to boo when you're in the middle of a pennant race. Think people are trying to make outs? Think people are trying to make errors? That's like the Eagles. I remember watching them play the Chicago Bears. The Eagles played poorly in the first half and they booed them.
"Let me tell you something about the sports writers. They all told us we can't win. We weren't supposed to beat Montreal, we weren't supposed to beat Houston, we weren't supposed to beat Kansas City. But tonight, we're world champions."
As Bowa's raspy voice bubbled like the champagne that was flowing, his dad, Paul, sat quietly behind his son at Larry's locker.
Paul Bowa used to manage in the St. Louis system and even though he knew his son lacked great ability, he encouraged him to keep trying harder and harder and that someday he would make the majors.
"I know I have made my dad happy tonight," Bowa said. "There were times when I wanted to quit when I was a kid, but he would not let me. Eventually, even though I was cut three times from my high-school team, I began to get my act together. Tonight, this championship is as much for him as it is for me."
Bowa polished off a bottle of the bubbly, yelled for another and continued what was becoming a midnight sermon.
"Don't tell me I can't do something," said Bowa. "That gets me ticked off. The only thing I can't do is hit home runs. I can steal bases for you, I can field for you, I can hit for you when you want some hits. I ain't a .300 hitter, I'm the first to admit that, but I did hit .300 one year. But I got close to 2,000 hits and they told me I wouldn't even get 200 at-bats in the major leagues. They said I should be playing at Williamsport, Pa. All the stuff that had been written about our baseball team, how we couldn't win, hit me all at once tonight.
"This World Series was very important to me because I might not ever get in another one. I wanted to take full advantage of it. Pete Rose told me if we get through the playoffs, the World Series would be fun. That Houston series was tough; if I didn't get an ulcer in that, I never felt so much pressure in my life as I did down there. It was terrible."
"But he began to show pressure today," his dad interrupted. "He cooked some barbecued chicken for lunch and hardly even said a word. The chicken was good, though."
"I was good in the World Series until today. When I got up this morning I didn't want to talk to anyone. My dad kept trying to carry a conversation and I didn't answer him. I didn't want to be around anyone. I was very nervous, but I kept trying to convince myself that this was the seventh game, that there was no tomorrow. I wanted to go out onto the field thinking we were even with Kansas City at three apiece.
"And when I get that ring and I put in on my left hand, I'm going to look down at it everyday. I will think back to this moment and there is going to be a great, great feeling. And it is going to last a long, long time."
NBC: Not Bad Coverage of final game
Series TV Analysis By Fred Rothenberg, Associated Press
NEW YORK – There was much more good than bad, but NBC's coverage of the final game of the World Series last night was somewhat inconsistent, particularly in Philadelphia's decisive third inning.
One of the game's key plays came when Kansas City shortstop U.L. Washington missed second base on Lonnie Smith's fielder's-choice ground ball.
After fishing for the right replay, the left-field camera showed Washington leaving the bag too soon. Fine shot. Error shortstop.
However, the official scorer then changed his decision, blaming Frank White for the throw that pulled Washington off the bag. Error second baseman. But we never saw the throw again on replay. Error NBC.
Pete Rose, the next batter up, dropped a beautiful bunt from the left side, which pitcher Rich Gale didn't field.
Tony Kubek: "Gale froze."
Tom Seaver: "That's the pitcher's responsibly. He should be breaking toward third."
Joe Garagiola: "Rose had only four sacrifice bunts all year."
Triple play for NBC.
Mike Schmidt then singled in two runs that keyed Philadelphia's 4-1 victory over Kansas City that clinched the Series.
In the early innings, there were several discussions in the broadcast booth about a possible balk move by Phillies starter Steve Carlton, Did his foot move toward first on the pickoff, as it's supposed to, or did it start toward home?
Apparently the National League umpires are more lenient about this than the American Leaguers. Garagiola said it was significant that the AL's Nick Bremigan was working home plate. Actually, it was the first base ump, the NL's Harry Wendelstedt, who probably would have made the call on a balk.
Kubek called it a flat-out balk. This is one case where director Harry Coyle's picture didn't keep pace with the commentary. Here we should have seen isolated shots of Carlton's feet. Was it or was it not a balk?
Overall, like Philadelphia catcher Bob Boone, Coyle called another great game. His baseball instincts are unmatched in the industry.
Examples: In the fifth inning, the center-field camera focused on Carlton pitching to John Wathan, who lined a single up the middle. Most directors would have punched up the home-plate camera, but Coyle stayed on the ball and rode into center field.
As soon as Jose Cardenal singled in the eighth, Coyle zoomed in on Phillies Manager Dallas Green. As if on cue, Green moved from the top step. We knew Carlton was gone because Coyle then zeroed in on Tug McGraw waiting and then moving in from the bullpen.
We still don't think NBC's announcers filled the significant human drama that well. Without Howard Cosellian bombast, they still could have done more in the ninth with Willie Wilson, who already had 11 strikeouts, batting with the bases loaded and two outs and facing McGraw, who had been lighting his own fires before putting them out.
And by drama, we don't mean Garagiola saying: "Both teams are winners and losers."
Credit should go to Garagiola, who had the great sense to keep quiet for more than a minute as the cameras rolled over the Philadelphia players' and fans' victory celebration.
But NBC, did we really need your promo for the nightly news, David Brinkley and Roger Mudd, at the top of the ninth? Couldn't you have squeezed it in earlier?
And was it necessary for our final remembrance from NBC's World Series broadcast to be a plug for an upcoming segment of "Games People Play?”
Promos aside, we will remember NBC's overall fine coverage for Coyle's excellence in the truck, the meshing and baseball savvy of Garagiola-Seaver-Kubek and the brilliant work of Bryant Gumbel. His between-innings recaps have been precise throughout the Series and his poise and pinpoint questioning under fire in Philadelphia's exuberant locker room were works of art.
Especially with the work of Coyle and Gumbel, NBC has a right to brag that the World Series of 1980 was indeed "back where it belongs."
Police keep revelry under control
By Terry Taylor, Associated Press
PHILADELPHIA – You've heard of "Angels in the Outfield?"
This was "Animals in the Infield."
It started in the seventh inning last night when nine horses with policemen in the saddle galloped across the warning track at Veterans Stadium.
Then with two out in the ninth inning and an 0-2 count on Kansas City left fielder Willie Wilson, the canine patrol arrived and positioned their German Shepherds just off the first and third-base foul lines and on top of the dugouts.
Seconds before Phillies ace reliever Tug McGraw struck out Wilson to end the game and win the 1980 World Series with a 4-1 victory over the Royals, a wall of leather-jacketed, helmeted policemen stood poised in front of the stands.
When it was over and the fireworks boomed above, the horses, who had galloped by in the seventh inning, settled in around the bases.
Now who would brave all that just to cut up a piece of artificial turf as a memento? Only one or two souls made a dash for the field and they didn't get very far.
It was an unprecedented show of security for a World Series by a police force that was concerned with containing the post-game celebration.
And it worked. Except for some manure, the field was unscathed. There wasn't even any trash on it.
The tone that was set inside the ballpark by the contingent of policemen, horses, and dogs apparently helped keep the lid on antics outside the stadium, too.
Jubilant fans, many young and intoxicated, danced and screamed in parking lots, hopped on car roofs and hung out open car windows as traffic slowly threaded its way out of the stadium area.
Despite the blare of honking car horns and the fans' yelps on the street, the whooping was pretty tame.
"I'd give them an 'A' right now for behavior," said police officer Raymond Naphys as he watched a procession of cars honk their way down Pattison Avenue.
"I think the heavy police presence has a lot to do with it," said officer Richard Bova, referring to the crowd's rather good conduct.
"We were ready for it this time," he said, adding that policemen weren't ready the last time the city went nuts – when the Flyers won the Stanley Cup in 1974.
"They didn't take the field did they?" he asked.
They certainly didn't.
World Series notebook: Phils foil Frey on history
By Rod Beaton, Staff Writer
PHILADELPHIA – Before last night's game at Veterans Stadium, Kansas City Manager Jim Frey clung to a piece of history, refusing to pay homage to the long odds that faced his Royals.
Frey discovered that those who remember history are destined to be betrayed by it. In other words, the 1980 World Series did not feature the Pittsburgh Pirates and Baltimore Orioles.
"Last year in Baltimore, we were ahead three games to one," said Frey. a rookie manager who was a Baltimore coach last season. "We had (Mike) Flanagan, (Jim) Palmer and (Scott) McGregor lined up, three damned good pitchers. And the last two games were at home.
"The politicians were already building platforms to make speeches from. And the Pirates won."
The Pirates did not have to face Steve Carlton. Last night, for the second time, the Royals did. The 6-foot-5 left-hander, with two innings of help from Tug McGraw, did not vindicate Frey's historical precedent. The Phillies beat the Royals 4-1 to wrap up the World Series.
"We fought back as hard as we can," said Frey. "We had a lot of opportunities but couldn't get the hit. It happened in the eighth inning and all during the Series."
• • •
Renie Martin of Dover ended the six-game Series as probably the most effective Kansas City pitcher. It had to be a satisfying conclusion to an in-and-out 10-10, 4.39 regular season.
He appeared in three Series games, 9⅔ innings, and posted a 2.79 earned run average. Only Larry Gura's ERA was lower, at 2.19, on the Royals.
Martin will pitch in winter ball in Venezuela, trying to improve his control and prepare to be a starter next season when KC tries again.
• • •
Although the Phillies rocked him for two late-inning rallies and saddled him with a 1-2 record, Dan Quisenberry is no World Series goat.
At least that's what Frey said vehemently last night at Veterans Stadium.
"They scored two runs off him (in Game Five) and haven't hit a ball in the air yet," said Frey, jabbing a finger at the reporter for emphasis.
"I can't fault Quisenberry for his approach or his performance. The only time they hit the ball hard off him was in the second game here when (Del) Unser and (Mike) Schmidt tagged him."
• • •
The secret to the success of Unser and, to a lesser degree, the other Phillies' left-handed pinch-hitters is summed up in two words: solidarity forever.
"We (Unser, Gross and George Vukovich) get together in the clubhouse and discuss the pitchers, the situations and how to handle them," Unser said."
The Phils' 35-year-old caddy finished the Series with two pinch hits, one short of the record.
• • •
Take note political pollsters and pundits: In nine of the last 10 presidential elections, the National and American League winners have been an early indicator of the election's outcome.
If a National League team wins, the Democrat will sit in the White House. If the American League entry wins, the GOP wins the election.
The last exception was 1 948, when the AL Cleveland Indians beat the Boston Braves and Democrat Harry Truman upset Republican Thomas Dewey.
Jimmy Carter, ignore the polls. The Phillies' triumph means you can take heart – and take Reagan.
• • •
Other Series notes
• Dallas Green is the third rookie manager to win the Series. The others were: Ed Dyer ('46 Cardinals) and Bob Lemon ('78 Yankees).
• Schmidt, Larry Bowa and George Brett had at least one hit in each game.
• Three Phillies did not see action in the Series: Ramon Aviles and John and George Vukovich. Four Royals did not play: Jeff Twitty, Jamie Quirk, Ken Brett and Rance Mulliniks.
• President Carter called Managers Frey and Green. He did not ask either for an endorsement.
• Greg Luzinski was the only player with more than two at-bats to go 0-for-the Series. The Bull was hitless in nine trips.
• • •
Of the 50 players who dressed for the Series, 20 played college ball… The Royals led in seven of nine offensive categories… Larry Christenson, Dick Ruthven, Carlton and Luzinski retired to the trainer's room for most of the celebration, to avoid the crush of reporters… Tony Taylor, the former Phillies' second baseman and first-base coach, threw out the ceremonial first ball. Taylor is now a Phillies' minor league instructor… The national ratings for NBC-TV's coverage of the first three games of the Series are the highest in the history of the event… Trade rumors, as expected, are making the rounds at the Series. Orioles General Manager Hank Peters is reportedly shopping for an outfielder and might be offering Dennis Martinez or even 33-year-old Steve Stone, the probable AL Cy Young Award winner.
Green postpones big decision
By Hal Bodley, Sports Editor
PHILADELPHIA – Dallas Green managed his final game for the Phillies last night – or did he?
"I'm really not sure," said Green, "I wanted to win this thing and then let somebody else manage the team, but if Paul Owens and Ruly Carpenter want me to come back, I'll do whatever they want."
Green, who turned 46 last Aug. 4, took over the Phils on Aug. 31, 1979 when Danny Ozark was fired. His appointment was only on an interim basis, but Owens talked him in to continuing for 1980.
"There's one thing that bothers me about giving it up," added Green. "The Pope (Owens' nickname) keeps telling me that he will retire so I can become general manager. I don't think that's necessary because he still has a lot of baseball left in him."
If Green does decide to leave the field, he says he would be perfectly content to serve as Owens' assistant for a few years.
"What would be wrong with that?" asked Dallas, the team's farm director before he replaced Ozark. "I have been so busy with the minor-league system I am not that familiar with the day-to-day responsibilities of the general manager. I think I could learn a lot serving as the Pope's assistant. I would hate for him to retire just to make room for me as general manager.
Green paused a moment before adding: "What I want to do right now is get away from everything for a few days. I want to relax and savor what we have done.”
If Green does give it up, one of his choices for a successor is Pat Cor-rales, the recently fired Texas Rangers' manager. Corrales grew up in the Philadelphia organization and was with the major-league club in 1964 and 1965.
Green admits Corrales is a possibility, but in the same breath says coach Bobby Wine would be just as strong a candidate.
"Wino has been my right-hand man," said Green. "He has done an outstanding job. He has helped me with the line-up, with strategy and I don't know what I would have done without him. He would make a very good manager."
Carlton, Boone bridge the gulf
By Rod Beaton, Staff Writer
PHILADELPHIA – At one time they were as compatible at Yassir Arafat and Menachem Begin. Last night they were sweethearts communicating with hand signals and thrown baseballs over a 60-feet, 8-inch chasm.
They bridged the gulf that once divided them and last night the Steve Carlton-Bob Boone battery made the post-game box score as the Phillies' winning connection in the World Series.
At one time, Carlton dodged Boone as effectively as he eludes the press that had packed Veterans Stadium for the 1980 Series. Tim McCarver would emerge from the clubhouse and prove he was still ambulatory by catching Carlton's variety pack of pitches.
McCarver was just another witness last night. That was Boone in "the tools of ignorance," – chest protector, shin guards and mask – calling and handling the pitches Carlton used to baffle the Kansas City Royals.
Carlton, alternately called "The Big Guy" and "Lefty," threw seven dazzling innings of four-hit ball. Tug McGraw then struggled through two more in relief and the Phillies won the game 4-1 and the Series 4-2.
It was the Phillies' first World Series title since the team debuted in 1883. Nearly as significant to those who follow the Phils' camp, one that has as much intrigue as Richard Nixon's White House, was that the game was a vindication for Carlton and Boone.
Carlton, it was whispered, can't win "the big one." Boone, many said, was washed up.
You can file those "astute" observations with the Dewey beats Truman headlines.
Carlton was 3-0 in "big ones" this year, winning a National League Championship Series game and both his World Series starts.
Boone has buried the assertions that he is burned out at 32, his bat as lifeless as the Royals are today, The affable Phillies' catcher, with one good knee and one healthy foot, was classy behind the plate and better still at it, hitting ,412 in the six games. He also walked four times and drove in four runs.
Mike Schmidt was the Most Valuable Player In the Series, Larry Bowa warranted consideration, Del Unser was a cinch in a pinch. Yet Carlton-Boone could be the World Series exacta with the biggest possible payoff. One acts like a graduate of the Dale Carnegie School of Public Relations. The other has the amiable press relations of the Iranian parliament. But Boone and Carlton taken together struck a harmonious chord to the record 65,838 on hand last night. They left the Royals flat.
"He (Carlton) threw a lot better tonight than last time," said Kansas City Manager Jim Frey, leading the testimonials in praise of lanky Lefty. "His fastball was much harder and his control was better."
Carlton was in control from the outset, showing the Royals why he is the favorite to win his third Cy Young Award for a 24-9 season.
"His breaking ball was better," said George Brett, who went 1-for-3 against Carlton last night. "It wasn't rolling, but it was sharp.
"I was glad when they took him out."
So was Boone. He knew Carlton was ready for the hook, and willing to accept it.
"He had the real good fastball," said Boone, who talked for Carlton while "Lefty" again ducked the media horde, "I came into the game thinking about using the fastball a lot. We kept the slider in reserve. He had real good power.
"He tired in the seventh. He's a professional, he went along with the manager's decision. He knew what we have in the bullpen."
The Phils had McGraw, appearing in his fourth of the six Series games. A premium left-hander, a Carlton-caliber reliever, McGraw's entry was tantamount to the Royals' exit. He was 1-1 in the Series with a 1.17 earned run average and two saves.
"This whole team has been reaching back and finding something extra since Moby Dick was a guppy," said McGraw, champagne and tear-soaked in a clubhouse crammed with jubilant Phillies and incredulous writers.
Boone had to reach a little farther than everyone else.
He had off-season knee surgery and a tiring, repetitious regimen to prepare for this year, The regular season was nothing to write about to daddy Ray, a former major leaguer. Boone struggled around the plate, hitting .229 and falling off his Gold Glove excellence of 79.
"I'll savor this thing in old-timers' games," said Boone, his swollen and discolored foot propped up on a chair, "Right now I just feel relief."
Much of that must come from Pete Rose's rescue when Boone allowed Frank White's ninth-inning, one-out, bases-loaded foul popup to pop out.
"It was Pete's ball," said Boone, 32, "I just couldn't hear him.
"I wanted to make sure if we collided, I could outrebound him. I think I must have had the Gold Glove I had last year."
When White's pop plopped from Boone's glove to Rose's, the Royals were comatose. When McGraw fanned Willie Wilson they were certified dead.
Boone's foot hurt, but his head was high, and not just from the champagne he clutched.
"My foot puffed up yesterday," he said, "It's nothing I can't deal with because we're in the Series.
"Now I can feel relief, I'll enjoy it more later, We just got some monkeys off our backs."
Series MVP Schmidt helps Phillies change their image
By John Bannon
PHILADELPHIA – Hatchets were buried. A dismal past was painted over with bright new colors.
The Phillies are world champions. It hardly sounds right. It was difficult enough adjusting to the sight of these characters in this on-going Broad Street passion play even playing meaningful baseball games in mid-October, let alone winning them.
But win they did. The Delaware Valley covets its first major-league championship after these many years of devotion to summer's game. A 4-1 victory in Game Six of the 1980 World Series over the Kansas City Royals last night at Veterans Stadium saw to that.
Still, the darlings of 30th and Market Streets, of Orange Street and of countless corner bars are not popular champions despite their charming charge to current status. The national press, and before that the area media, has portrayed this team as an arrogant band, a pampered group of fragile egos saving their best efforts for petty squabbles.
They even lacked the fun-loving spark to their arguments that the Oakland A of the past decade provided. And Phils Manager Dallas Green never will seem as revolting a despot as A's owner Charlie Finley.
Mike Schmidt, the gifted Philadelphia third baseman and the Most Valuable Player in this World Series after collecting his second game-winning RBI in the six-game drama last night, understands the image. In weaker or franker moments, he likely even would admit the Phillie players have invited trouble into their household with poor public relations and even poorer displays of their talents in past games that mattered most.
Still, teams change from year to year. Certainly this team that now calls itself champion but once quit so easily, has been transformed.
Yet on the eve of the final step of this climatic climb, Schmidt was reading the same tired story about his baseball team, and it has become his team, one that leans so heavily on the sweet stroke of one of baseball premier power hitters.
Complain about his uncooperative stance with the media and Mike Schmidt would understand. Poke fun at how easily this team can bicker over the slightest slight and Schmidt would shake his head knowingly.
But yesterday Schmidt read that his team was undeserving of the World Series title that it was to win later that night. He bristled.
Schmidt had walked with his teammates the lonely miles – no, he often dragged them – down the excruciating path they have followed to their final reward. He appreciates the effort.
"I don't see now anybody could possibly say we are undeserving," he said after last night's game. Over the last month and half, this team has scrap for everything it got. We keep battling. There a limit to how many times a team can come back. We wt that limit and then somehow found a way to come back some more. I can't explain it. I just know we did it.”
Yesterday, Schmidt was ready to admit past transgressions and efforts worthy of criticism.
"We've taken some knocks in the press before this season. I'm not going to stand here and say that they were all wrong," he said. "Even this season, we took some heat. I don't always like it, but I don't always disagree with it. For the first five and a half months of this season, we certainly didn't play like world champs."
Schmidt, though, has stashed such somber thoughts in a musty closet, stacked right next to those bitter previous playoff experience.
"I'm sure if we hadn't won this Series, there would be some stupid writer who would brand us losers, not able to win the big one," Schmidt said. "I couldn't buy that. I think we buried that image when we went into Montreal and had to win two and then went into Houston and had to win two. We showed those two times that we weren't losers."
Schmidt feels a few losses snowballed into that ugly image.
“I know what our reputation was," said Schmidt. "I think the biggest contributing factor to that was the freaky way we found to lose playoff games. This town has been so hungry for a winner that I know there have been times where we have pressed too much in front of them to give them what they wanted."
This season the Phils finally found the right combination – cool-headed slugger, always in control of his emotions, and hot-tempered Manager Green, who just kept blasting away at his team, grabbing its attention and forcing it to look at itself in a mirror.
"I'm sure Dallas is like anybody else. There are times he says things that after he's done it, I'm sure he wishes he could take it back," Schmidt said. "But you can't argue with results."
Green finally milked the required effort with his constant harping on "we" not “I” philosophy and his frank evaluation of his players' performances.
Schmidt smiles now at how it has worked. He just isn't sure that too much hasn't been taken for granted in the midst of the post-season excitement.
"I'm still not sure this is a disciplined team. I think there are still some players on this team who won't or can't accept discipline,” Schmidt said. "But what does that really matter? When we cross over those white lines, we're as serious as anybody. We get the job done."
Schmidt had been the quiet one when his friends, teammates and co-workers had fussed and feuded under Green's barking regime. Now the third baseman stands solidly behind his boss.
"Everything Dallas Green did was right. I'm not going to stand here and criticize Dallas Green. How could you? We're the world champs and he's the world-champ manager. You can't fight that."
Indeed, for once peace had come to the Phillies' locker room. Green hugged shortstop Larry Bowa. Everyone had nice things to say about each other.
Yesterday, there were no complaints about Green's style.
"This made it all worth it," Schmidt concluded.
Successful Royals can’t forget failure in Series
By Ron Rapoport, Field News Service
PHILADELPHIA – Later, when the memory of the police dogs and the alley-oop catch of the pop foul and the six men left on base in the last two innings have faded, George Brett will look back on it and remember it his way.
Later, when the World Series strikeout record that he set in such embarrassing circumstances has been reduced to just a small line of type In the World Series' record book, Willie Wilson will tell himself that he really did have a good season after all.
Later, when the rally-ending groundout on a high pitch that he was afraid to let go by has lost its painful immediacy, Hal McRae will remember the parts of the year that will make him smile.
But for the moment, they were just members of another losing World Series ballclub – the Kansas City Royals.
For the moment, they were just one more team that had been to the mountaintop, had accomplished a lot individually and collectively, only to falter into disappointment and defeat at the very end.
"You get a chance to do something you always dreamed about and will think about the rest of your life," said Brett after the Royals had lost the final game of the World Series 4-1 to the Phillies last night. "The playoffs are easy to forget. The World Series is something to cherish. Maybe after the season is over, I'll think back on it and think of the positive points.
"When I get old and gray and have grandchildren, I'm going to tell them I played in the World Series, not that I played in the playoffs, If they ask who won, I'm going to say we lost the first year and won the second year."
Brett was a curious figure through the Series. He started out the way a hitter who flirted with hitting .400 in the regular season might have been expected to, going 6-for-12 in the first three games, getting a home run and four extra-base hits.
But then came his highly publicized hemorrhoid affliction and the only slightly less remarked-about pitch at his head by the Phillies' Dickie Noles. After the second of these traumatic experiences, Brett was more notable for what he did not do than what he did.
Until he ended the Series with two singles, Brett had gone 1-for-10 after the near-beaning. And his last Series hit, a bleeder through the right side of the infield that he barely beat out, was hardly the sort of booming game-breaker that was needed.
"What we needed was a line drive over the shortstop's or second base-man's head to clear the bases," Brett said, perhaps making the implicit statement that they needed it from him.
All Brett's single did was load the bases for McRae, who came up intent on winning the whole thing in the eighth inning.
"I was thinking home run until it was 3-2," said McRae. "Then I was thinking contact. He came in with a high fastball, but I wasn't going to strike out with the bases loaded."
He grounded out instead.
In the ninth, a walk and two singles loaded the bases again, leaving it up to the most bedeviled Royals of afl to try to keep the Series alive into a seventh game.
Frank White, 2-for-24 to that point, went down on a bit of low comedy when Phillies catcher Bob Boone chased his pop foul to the steps of the first-base dugout, got a glove on it, dropped it and watched Pete Rose pluck it out of the air.
"Why now?" thought Brett as he watched Boone and Rose giggle gleefully at their stroke of good luck. "Why didn't that happen in April? Why on the 21st of October with the base loaded? I've dropped a few and nobody was even near enough to pick it up after I dropped it."
The final out of 1980 was, perhaps fittingly, reserved for Wilson, who was greeted when he came to the plate by the sight of helmeted policemen standing shoulder to shoulder all the way down both foul lines, not to mention the cream of the city's canine corps.
Perhaps intimidated as much by the sight of such military might as by Tug McGraw's screwball, Wilson struck out for the 12th time in the Series, thereby erasing the names of Eddie Mathews and Wayne Garrett from that particular line in the record book.
"If you want to say I lost it, you can say that," Wilson said when the subject of his failure was brought up. Gone for the moment was any mention of the .326 batting average and 79 stolen bases he compiled during the season to help the Royals get to the Series.
"If you want to say it's because I didn't get on base, you can say that. But if it's my fault, then this team shouldn't be called the Kansas City Royals, it should be called the Kansas City Wilsons.
"I didn't strike out 12 times in six games in I don't know how long. It wasn't the pitching. Things just didn't go our way. Things just didn't go my way."
As for the appearance of the police, who were there to preserve order and the condition of the Veteran Stadium turf so the Chicago Bears can play their underdog role to the Eagles on Sunday in a National Football League game, the Royals were somewhat amused.
"I figured they thought they had the game in the bag," said Brett. "At least the riot police did. It's funny. The P.A. announcer says, 'Let's show how Philadelphia fans are civilized by not running on the field.’ Then, with one out to go, 3,000 police and dogs and horses are on the field so they can't."
"It just didn't seem like baseball anymore," said White. "If you have to do this kind of thing in America to control the people at a baseball game, then something's wrong. I've never seen anything like that other than in Venezuela where they have people stationed around the field with machine guns."
But we should not leave the World Series with the image of police vans full of barking dogs and horse droppings in the first-base coach's box. We should leave it with George Brett, who was arguably the best player in baseball this year and who was playing in his first Series, a fact that meant something to him even if he did not win.
"I thought it would be scare time," he said. "I thought it was be nervous all the time. But it wasn't. It was fun. The reporters sometimes are like a toothache, but the exposure is fun, The importance of winning is fun. The importance of losing is not fun, but somebody's got to lose. All year long after a loss, the closing line is, 'We'll get them tomorrow.’ There's no 'We’ll get them tomorrow' now.