Wilmington Evening Journal - October 24, 1980

Carpenter puts blast on story knocking Phils


By Hal Bodley, Sports Editor


THE PARADE DOWN Broad Street had been one of the most gratifying experiences he had ever been through. Then, there was the huge party with all the players and front-office people.


From the time Willie Wilson swung and missed Tug McGraw's fastball Tuesday night. the final out in the Phillies' 4-1 victory over Kansas City that brought a world championship to Philadelphia, to all the festivities on Wednesday, Ruly Carpenter had been on a high. Then, yesterday afternoon he picked up his Evening Journal and couldn't believe what he was reading.


Tom Boswell. a reporter for the Washington Post who covered the World Series, rained on Ruly Carpenter’s parade. And judging from the phone calls we received here, he annoyed quite a few Phillies' fans with his attack on the team and the franchise.


First of all, it should be pointed out that in July, a few days after those totally inaccurate drug stories broke, Tom Boswell was caught standing in front of Steve Carlton's locker, studying the contents of same. Carlton walked into the clubhouse and proceeded to verhallv attack Tom Boswell.


Another time, several years ago, this same reporter wrote a story about Jim Kaat during which the pitcher claims he was misquoted. At that time the Phillies tried to take action to have him barred from the clubhouse. Jay Johnstone, the player rep at the time, actually drafted a letter telling the Washington Post and Boswell he was not welcome, but Jay quickly found out he could not do that.


Carpenter, owner of the Phils, thinks the Carlton incident in July probably left a sour taste in Boswell's mouth and led him to write the story that appeared on these pages yesterday.


"When he wrote something about Carlton, he undoubtedly used that as an example of how the Phillies players hate the press," said Carpenter last night from his Montchanin home. "To me, Boswell studying the contents of Carlton's locker, especially after the drug stories had just come out, would be tantamount to a businessman walking into his office and there's a complete stranger looking at some papers. I think most people in the business community would resent that and a baseball player's locker is part of his personal property."


Early in Boswell's long article, he states: "Few teams in baseball history have accomplished more with less, or done it more dramatically than these Phillies…”


"I totally agree with the part where he says we've done it more dramatically," said Carpenter, "but when he says few teams have accomplished more with less, I take offense at that, especially you consider in the last five years the Phillies have won more regular-season games than any team in the National League. We've won 467 games and the Reds have won 461. We have done this in spite of being riddled with injuries the last two years. In 1979 we lost our entire pitching staff, except for Carlton, at one stage.


"We've won four Eastern Division titles in the last five years and so have the Kansas City Royals. This year we won 91 games in National League East. The Royals won 97 games in the American League West, the worst division in baseball. If you take their division and you exclude their record, the other six teams in the American League West have a combined record of 430 wins and 536 losses."


Later in the article, Boswell quotes the Royals' Hal McRae as saving: "We're better than they are. I don't have any doubt of that… If I met a Phillie a week from now, he'd admit to me, 'cause I'm another ball player, that we're the better team. At five of the nine positions (counting designated hitter) we're clearly stronger. We're not worse at any position. The pitching's about equal, have more speed, more power."


"I would like to know what four positions he's talking about other than the DH," said Carpenter. "To say that their pitching is equal to ours is a total joke. I just don't understand how a player with McRae's experience could make a statement like that when you stop to consider the Royals' pitching staff competing in the worst division in baseball gave up 1,496 hits in 1,459 Innings pitched. That's 37 more hits than innings pitched and at the same time, they only struck out 614 hitters. The Phillies, by comparison, gave up 1,418 in 1,480 innings and struck out 889 hitters. As you know, anyone who knows anything about baseball – and it's obvious Boswell knows very little – will tell you pitching is 75 percent of the game.


"I don't want to give you the impression the Phillies had the best pitching staff In the National League, because we didn't. All I'm saying is that I sincerely feel our pitching staff as a whole is better than Kansas City's. I think that Jim Frey, the Kansas City manager in a very direct way proved how he felt about the depth in his pitching staff when in the World Series he really used just five pitchers – Larry Gura, Rich Gale, Dennis Leonard, Renie Martin and Dan Quisenberry. He must have been very reluctant to use his whole staff, unlike Dallas Green, who used everybody.


"I also want to point out If they're such a good ball club how come during the season their record was 21-21 with George Brett out of the lineup. We won a divisional title with several key people hurt a lot."


Boswell also got into a discussion about Brett and Mike Schmidt, saying that the Phils' third baseman had such a great Series because of the luck of the draw. He pointed out that Brett came up with 12 men on base, while Schmidt batted with 25 on base.


"To me, the reason for that was the fact we kept Frank White, Willie Wilson and U. L. Washington off base in front of him."


Boswell also talked about the Phils' lucky playoff victory over Houston. Carpenter is quick to point out that the Phils had a 9-3 regular-season record over the Astros and were 4-2 before the playoffs.


"In my opinion Houston had the best pitching staff in the National League even after J. R. Richard became ill," Carpenter added. "And I don't feel when you beat a team 12 out of 17 times, including the playoffs, it's luck.


"This guy then really showed how little he knows about baseball when he started talking about the the .292 combined team batting averages and the number of men left on base. First of all, this was the first time an entire World Series was played on artificial turf. Secondly, you had two fine offensive teams flaying against each other plus the act neither team was really blessed with great depth on their pitching staff.


Carpenter also was upset about Boswell's attack on the Phils' victory celebration in Montreal after they won the Eastern Division title.


"I was in the clubhouse the entire time and I did not see the unfocused intense anger. I can't disagree more. The celebration was one of total jubilation and happiness after every writer in the country had written us off before the season began. These guys came back and won it, especially after that disaster in Pittsburgh, and they proved that the writers were totally wrong and they were going to enjoy it while it lasted."


Boswell also discussed the strained relationship between the media and the players, but that could fill a whole column.


The points Carpenter makes are sound and accurate.


Hey, the Phillies are World Champions. Why rain on their parade?

Philadelphia wants to put bite on Brett, Royals for wage tax


Associated Press


PHILADELPHIA – "George Brett left here this week owing us some taxes," Philadelphia's top financial official says.


Eugene L. Cliett Jr., the city revenue director, noted yesterday that Brett, the Kansas City third baseman, had not paid the city's 4.3125 percent wage tax for the World Series games in which he played here.


Neither has any other visiting professional athlete in the 40 years that the tax has been on the books.


Cliett said he wants to start enforcing the law and is waiting for Mayor William Green to give him authorization.


Cliett disclosed his plans after learning of a federal suit filed by a Navy Department employee who works in the city and has been billed for $5,795 in taxes.


The suit claims members of visiting teams, along with out-of-town musicians and entertainers, are getting special treatment.


In the suit, Billy Eugene Maxwell of Deptford, N.J., requested an Injunction requiring the city to drop its efforts to collect the $5,795 from his earnings and apply the law evenly.


"The guy is right," said Cliett, adding that because the tax law has not been enforced fully, the city loses up to $500,000 a year.


Cliett said that even before the suit was filed, he prepared letters informing all baseball, basketball, football, hockey and soccer teams that play here that they must begin deducting the tax from the wages of players.

Phils earn more than title


Associated Press


PHILADELPHIA – The Phillies earned approximately $1.5 million through the National League championship playoffs and the World Series, but it cost more than a third that amount for the cleanup after the parade celebration.


Club executive vice president William Giles disclosed the earnings figure yesterday. Giles said the Phils would not have shown a profit if they had not made the playoffs.


City Managing Director W. Wilson Goode said the parade for the Phillies' series victory will cost the city more than a half million dollars.


Goode said he will have a more accurate figure today when various city departments report their parade expenditures. Still not accounted for is overtime pay for the police and fire departments.

Tug undecided about becoming free agent


Associated Press


NEW YORK – Tug McGraw, whose steadfast and emotional pitching performances helped the Phillies win their first World Series in 98 years of trying, says he still has not made up his mind about testing the free agent market.


"I have two weeks from the end of the season to officially declare myself a free agent and I've got a meeting scheduled with the Philadelphia people on Monday," McGraw explained yesterday. "But this is a poor time because there's the general managers' meeting and my schedule is suddenly filling up.


"I might be forced into it (free agency) because of the time. I might have to submit the letter just to protect myself. But, if I do declare myself a free agent and test the market, it's only fair to Philadelphia and me to get a ballpark figure about my value. And the Phillies will have the first shot at me anyhow."


McGraw, who saved two World Series games and won another, added, "After the strength I showed them in the last month and a half of the season and the playoffs and the World Series, they can't have any doubts about my ability to help them."


Twenty-eight players have opted for free agent status in the first two days of the two-week period.


McGraw, 36, was in New York to tape an appearance on NBC's Tomorrow Show.


He was met by a small whirlwind of controversy stirred up when, in the throes of a euphoric embrace by virtually the entire city of Philadelphia, he made a remark about New ork City, his former home, that angered many of his onetime fans.


McGraw and his Phillies teammates were paraded through the streets of the City of Brotherly Love on Wednesday the day after they had wrapped up their triumph over the Kansas City Royals. Then, before 85,000 persons in JFK Stadium, McGraw said, "All through baseball history, Philadelphia has had to take a back seat to New York City, but New York City can take this world championship and stick it."


Yesterday, in the city where he once played a major role in the Mets winning a world championship, he explained the remark.


"The idea was that some of the writers down there covering the Series gave us the idea it was a boring job for them because the New York Yankees weren't in it," McGraw said. "Oh, they expect the Mets to pop in there with a championship once in a while."


McGraw, who earlier in the day had his trademark long hair cut and styled, added, "Another thing that influenced me is that I'm aware of baseball fans' feelings. I know how the fans felt in New York when we won and I know how the Philadelphia fans felt.


"The fans of New York are wonderful and I haven't forgotten anything they've given me," McGraw added. "But I must make everybody understand the context and the emotion it (the world championship) represents in Philadelphia.


"It's a history thing. Philadelphia has had the Declaration of Independence and the Liberty Bell. Baseball is the national pastime and now we have everything that is America in Philadelphia."

Game 6 rating in Series TV highest ever


Associated Press


NEW YORK – NBC's telecast of Game Six Tuesday night, the final game of the 1980 World Series between Philadelphia and Kansas City, was the highest rated Series broadcast of all time, according to figures released by Nielsen yesterday.


Philadelphia's 4-1 victory over Kansas City drew a rating of 40.0, meaning 40 percent of the nation's sets were tuned in. The telecast received a 60 share, which means 60 of the audience watching during the time period Tuesday night saw the World Series.


The seventh game of the 1975 Series between Boston and Cincinnati now drops to the second-highest rating.


More households saw Game Six than any other Series contest – 31,120,000 – beating the 28,150,000 homes for Game Seven of the 1979 Series between Baltimore and Pittsburgh.


For the six games, the Series ratings averaged a 32.5, falling short of the 32.8 picked up by the 1978 Series between Los Angeles and the Yankees. That Series went seven games, nine of them in prime time (sic:  the 1978 Series was six games, four in prime time). Four of the six games for 1980 were in prime time, when audience levels are much higher than in the afternoon.