Camden Courier-Post - September 2, 1980
Owens erupts; Phillies on top
By Hal Bodley, Gannett News Service
SAN FRANCISCO – It had been three weeks since Dallas Green's Pittsburgh Address. Yesterday, it was Paul Owens' turn.
The Phillies' vice president and player personnel director waited until 30 minutes before his team's date with San Francisco. The clubhouse doors were bolted and the man they call Pope let his frustrations of the last 48 hours spill into the laps of his dazed players.
What happened after that wasn't a Rembrandt. But the Phillies took advantage of Steve Carlton's gutsy pitching and three San Francisco errors to dump the Giants, 6-4, in the sunny cool of Candlestick Park.
BY WINNING, the Phils inched into first place in the National League East by one percentage point.
After taking first for a couple of hours Saturday night, the unpredictable Phils shut off the faucet. They let dreadful San Diego embarrass them in the second game of a doubleheader, 5-1, then virtually handed the Padres Sunday's contest 10-3.
Owens could not believe what he saw Sunday. Gold Glove centerfielder Garry Mad-dox watched two routine fly balls drop in front of him and it became obvious once the Padres wiped out a 3-0 Philadelphia lead, the Phillies called it a game.
To see them perform as they did in San Diego left Owens bitter, hurt and on fire.
GREEN'S histrionic tirade came on August 10 between games of a doubleheader loss at Pittsburgh. The Phils found themselves six games behind the Pirates and Expos after that four-game tailspin.
But since then Montreal and Pittsburgh have stumbled. The Phils' record since then has been 14-8, good enough to make up the six games.
Losing two straight in lackluster fashion to San Diego, however, gave little indication the Phils were ready to take command of the division.
Owens was loud, emotional and profane during his lecture. He forgot about sensitive feelings and criticized Larry Bowa and Maddox in front of their teammates for their performances of late.
"YOU'VE played the first five months of this season for yourselves," he said, "I want you to play the next month for Ruly Carpenter and Paul Owens. It's about time you did something for all the things we have done for you."
"The Pope's the general manager and he has every right to come down here and say what he said," admitted Bowa, who had two singles and drove in two runs yesterday. "He jumped on Garry and me. We have not been playing well."
Bowa, who has refused to talk with reporters for the most part since the blown-out-of -proportion drug stories hit the newspapers in July, has been hitting well the last few weeks and has raised his average to .259.
His inconsistent play – for Bowa – at shortstop has been one of the eyesores of late. He has 14 errors compared to six last year.
"BUT I'M not going to have a year like 1979 again," he said. "All you have to do is check the fielding statistics. None of the regular shortstops in the league has fewer errors than I have.
"As for my hitting, I have been swinging the bat well. It has been a difficult adjustment hitting near the bottom of the line-up (from second), but I have done it and not complained. Dallas Green says that that is the best lineup and if we win the division more power to him. But that doesn't mean I like hitting there."
"The Pope's talk was very constructive," said Green. "When he meets with the team it's always constructive. He reaffirmed his beliefs and I think it was good for them to hear his thoughts. They have been hearing them from me all year. It was his honest feelings about the ball club and what we're doing that he talked about. He believes that we're a good ball club and that we're on the right track to winning."
"I went in to talk to Dallas today," said Maddox, who did not start yesterday's game, but who came in as a late-inning defensive replacement for Lonnie Smith. "I apologized to him and offered to apologize to the team but he said that wasn't necessary."
THE PHILS, who collected 13 hits, snapped a 4-4 tie in the eighth, scoring two runs at the expense of loser Greg Minton.
With one down, Bowa beat out a single behind second base. He advanced to second on a wild pitch and scored on Bob Boone's single to center. Boone, who had taken second on the throw, tried to score from second on Carlton's single to deep shortstop, a bouncer Johnnie LeMaster momentarily dropped.
Boone, however, was cut down at the plate, but Greg Gross hit a shot at second baseman Ronnie Stennett's glove that allowed Carton, who had moved to second on a wild pitch, to score the second run of the inning.
The Giants' biggest threat came in the seventh when they wiped out a 4-2 Philadelphia lead. Pinchhitter Joe Strain singled, went to second when Bill North walked, and both runners moved up on Joe Pettini's two-strike sacrifice. Strain scored on Jim Wohlford's sacrifice fly and North came home on Mike Ivie's single.
After that, Carlton, who recorded his 21st victory, allowed the Giants just one hit.
PHIL UPS – Leftfielder Wohlford made a fine sliding (on his rear) catch of Rose's short fly in foul territory in the first inning and was hit on the head by shortstop LeMaster's knee... Both players, however remained in the game after receiving treatment... Stennett's first error of the game allowed the Phils to score their first run in the second and tie at 1-1... Green has scrapped his five-man pitching rotation for the rest of the season... Instead of rookie Marty Bystron facing Vida Blue tonight, it will be Larry Christenson, followed by Dick Ruthven, Bob Walk and Carlton.