Philadelphia Inquirer - September 30, 1980
Expos win on home in ninth
By Terry Scott, Special to the Inquirer
MONTREAL – Utilityman John Tamargo showed last night that his membership in the Montreal Expos Baseball Club isn't just honorary.
Tamargo belted the fourth home run of his career – and by his own admission, the biggest – with two outs and two runners on base to lift the Expos to a 5-2 triumph over the St. Louis Cardinals in front of 34,064 fans at Olympic Stadium.
The victory kept the Expos in first place in the National League East, one-half game ahead of the Phils, who beat the Cubs in 15 innings.
"I knew I'd hit the ball good, but 1 thought I may have hit it too well on a line," said Tamargo, who had not hit a homer in 49 previous at-bats this season.
The ball, thrown by reliever George Frazier (0-4), cleared the fence with a few feet to spare and produced instant pandemonium in the Expos' dugout as Tamargo slowly rounded the bases.
"I didn't realize t was going that slow," said Tamargo. "It was my first one as I had to take my time."
A throwing error by Cards' third baseman Ken Reitz – only his eighth miscue of the year – opened the door for Montreal in the ninth as Gary Carter was safe at first.
Warren Cromartie laid down a sacrifice bunt, advancing Carter to second, and St. Louis countered by intentionally walking Larry Parrish. Willie Montanez then hit into a fielder's choice, putting runners at each corner and setting the stage for Tamargo's game-winning blast.
The Expos entered the ninth with the 2-2 tic intact due largely to left-fielder Jerry White, who made a dazzling grab of Reitz's fly ball that was headed into the power alley. Tony Scott, who had singled ahead of Reitz, would almost certainly have scored if White had not caught the ball.
"The ball got in the lights, so I had to wait," explained White. "That's why I dove for it the way I did. "I've made bigger catches before, but in this situation, it was really a big one."
After reliever Stan Bahnsen walked pinch-hitter Leon Durham to put runners at first and second following the catch, Woodie Fryman was summoned to pitch to lefthanded-hitter Dane Iorg. Fryman threw one pitch and got Iorg to pop to second base, and recorded his seventh win in 11 decisions when the Expos produced their ninth-inning heroics.
Fun is a tight race in stretch, but someone forgot to tell Phils
By Frank Dolson, Inquirer Sports Editor
Fifth inning at the Vet. Phillies have a 21 lead over the Cubs, the bases loaded, one out and Mike Schmidt at bat. He swings at the first pitch and hits it sharply to short an inning-ending double play. Meanwhile, at Montreal, Garry Templeton homers with nobody on in the sixth to tie the Expos, 1-1.
Agony one minute, ecstasy the next. Two games, 500 miles apart – one involving the Phillies, the other the Expos – with the sports fans of two cities hanging on to every pitch.
This is when baseball is the most fun.
This is what no other sport can provide – the day-by-day, minute-by-minute drama of a tight pennant race.
Seventh inning at the Vet. The Phillies tie it, 3-3, on Pete Rose's chopper to the mound. In Montreal, the Expos, now trailing by a run, have the bases loaded, one out.
Win or lose, there's nothing like the swirling fortunes of a race like this. It's what the players, the managers, the fans wait six months to see.
And yet, for some strange reason, much of the fun seems to be missing at the Vet. The Expos? They seem to be having a ball, squeezing every ounce of enjoyment out of the daily drama. The Phillies? They seem to be struggling through the most joyless pennant drive in memory.
Players are angry at writers. Writers are upset with players. Players are second-guessing managers. It's a regular barrel of laughs.
Last night, for instance, Dallas Green shook up the Phillies' lineup, benching three veterans – center-fielder Garry Maddox, leftfielder Greg Luzinski and catcher Bob Boone. Before the game began, Maddox confronted a writer – The Inquirer's Jayson Stark – and told him he felt he was responsible for his benching, blaming it on a story in yesterday morning's paper that made a big deal out of a line drive Maddox lost in the sun in an 8-3 loss to the Expos.
Also before the game, Larry Bowa had a few things to say about the lineup changes on his radio show on WWDB.
"Dallas has said he's going to let the veterans go to the hilt," Bowa told his audience. "To me, this is not letting the veterans go to the hilt. If he's going to let Lonnie (Smith) and Keith (Moreland) play (against the Cubs), then I'm sure he's going to let them play (against) the Expos in Montreal. He can't sit down Boonie and Luzinski for four days and then when we go against Montreal say, 'OK, go get 'em again.'
"In order for them (the veterans) to find their batting stroke or find their batting eye they have to play every day. If they're not going to play every day don't just throw them in against the Montreal Expos.
"Dallas is trying to shake things up, which is very understandable, but on the other hand he's talking out of the side of his mouth by saying he wants to stay with the veterans...."
Fun? Not really. Not around here. The atmosphere is too tense, too grim, too unfriendly. It doesn't really matter who's to blame – the writers for some of their stories, the fans for their boos, the players for their overreactions. The fact is that the best part of the baseball season, an absolutely super pennant race, has become a uniquely joyless trip.
It's only when all the extracurricular nonsense can be temporarily set aside, only when events on the playing field capture the spotlight that the fun returns.
Top of the ninth at the Vet, the Phillies and the Cubs tied, 3-3. Two on, two out and Steve Dillard facing Tug McGraw. Top of the ninth in Montreal, the Cards and the Expos tied, 2-2. Two on, two out and ex-Phillie Dane Iorg facing Woodie Fryman. One game unfolding in front of you; the other coming in play by play, pitch by pitch in the press box. Now that's fun.
It's fun, too, when McGraw gets a big, rally-killing out, when he makes a diving grab of a bunt and turns it into a double play, as he did last night in the eighth, or when he gets Dillard on a routine fly to center, as he did in the ninth, and comes bounding back to the dugout, beating his gloved hand against his thigh, exhorting the crowd with his other hand.
You watch Tug, and you find yourself smiling again, squeezing every ounce of fun and enjoyment and emotion out of a close ball game, forgetting for the moment all the unhappiness, all the rancor that has turned what should be the best, the most fun-filled part of the season into a strangely grim march into October.
Fifteenth inning at the Vet. Two out for the Phillies, the tying run at third and Maddox, who entered the game three innings before, at bat. The Expos have already pulled out their game in the ninth... and now the Phillies suddenly, dramatically pull out theirs. Maddox rips a single over second to tie it. Then a hit by Moreland, a walk to Bowa and a game-breaking shot up the middle by Manny Trillo. Pandemonium at the Vet.
A few minutes past midnight and the writers troop into the Phillies clubhouse.
"We'll win somehow," McGraw is hollering. "Dammit, we'll win somehow."
But for the most part, the clubhouse is quiet, the relations between the press and the players still strained.
"Look at 'em," Bowa says, indicating the mob of writers grouped around Pete Rose's locker. "Bleeping front-runners."
"They'd be in the other locker room if not for Garry's single," Schmidt replies.
But Maddox got the clutch single, and the Phillies won a game that was seemingly lost minutes before... a game that kept them breathing down the backs of the Expos.
C'mon, fellas, look happy. It's a heckuva pennant race. Let's enjoy it while we can.
Green’s pitching strategy revolves around Carlton
By Jayson Stark, Inquirer Staff Writer
Sixteen years ago yesterday, Gene Mauch figured out his pitching rotation for the '64 stretch drive. It came out Bunning-Short-Bunning-Short-Bunning-Short.
When Dallas Green sat down yesterday to devise the Phillies' rotation for the last week of this season, it didn't turn out to be that simple.
Step one was, Steve Carlton had to pitch twice in these final six games. Green had no doubt about that. So Carlton will go tomorrow against the Cubs and then could come back Sunday in Montreal, if necessary.
Everything else revolved around that. Marty Bystrom will pitch tonight. Then Bob Walk goes Thursday, and Dick Ruthven would start Friday, on six days' rest, in the Montreal opener.
Ruthven "had a little twinge in his arm in his last start (Friday)," Green said. "That's why I took him out. That gave Herm (Starrette, the pitching coach) and I the idea it might not be bad to rest him the extra day and pitch him Friday. That way, if there was a playoff Monday (with Montreal), we might be able to use him then."
Green and Starrette debated the possibility of not starting Walk at all this week. (Walk is 2-6 since Aug. 1.) But Green said he "just feel(s) Bobby has helped us a great deal, and I'd rather see him pitch against Chicago, which is primarily righthanded, than against Montreal. I just feel we have to go with more experienced guys against Montreal."
Green said "you could probably pencil in" Larry Christenson to start Saturday. "But with LC, we've got to play him one day at a time," he said. Bystrom would go Saturday if Christenson can't, or Sunday, if Carlton isn't needed.
With that out of the way, Green turned his attention to applying some first aid to his offense. Before last night, the Phillies had scored 11 runs and bashed 31 hits, total, in the five games on this homestand.
So Green benched Bob Boone (0-for-18) and Greg Luzinski (2-for-21) last night, as he had said he would do Sunday. In went Keith Moreland and Lonnie Smith.
Surprisingly, Green made one other change. He inserted Del Unser in center in place of Garry Maddox (4-for-17, with one home run in the homestand).
"Garry has hit the ball sporadically," Green said. "I just feel that as long as I'm making offensive changes, I might as well go whole-hog and make the change in center, too."
Maddox felt the fuss over Chris Speier's big triple, which Maddox lost in the sun Sunday, was the reason for the change. Green denied that.
"Garry and I have no problem with that play in center," Green said. "It's a play he just didn't make. It's a play a lot of outfielders aren't going to make at that particular time of day. Unfortunately, it hurt us in a big game. But you know darn well Garry Maddox didn't want that to happen. I'm just looking for offense. I've got no gripe with his defense."
Green decided not to rest Pete Rose (4-for-35 going into last night). He said he hoped that with Smith in front of Rose and Bake McBride hitting behind him, "maybe that will help get him going."
NOTES: If the Phillies and Expos finish in a tie Sunday, there will be a one-game playoff Monday at 1 p.m. at the Vet.... Procedures for purchasing Phillies playoff tickets, assuming there are any playoffs, have not been announced.... Bystrom vs. Lynn McGlothen (11-13) tonight.
Phils, Flyers home tonight
While the Phillies are in a pennant race, the Flyers are rounding into shape for the forthcoming NHL season.
Both teams are playing in South Philadelphia tonight.
The Phils face the Cubs again at the Vet (7:35), and the Flyers take on the Buffalo Sabres across the street at the Spectrum in an exhibition game.
PHILLIES vs. Chicago at Veterans Stadium (Radio-KYW-1060, 7:35 p.m.)
FLYERS vs. Buffalo at Spectrum (Radio-WIP-610, 7:05 p.m.)
Trillo’s hit in 15th beats Cubs
6-5 win keeps Phils half game off pace
By Jayson Stark, Inquirer Staff Writer
The great thing about baseball is that there is always tomorrow. The Expos may be bashing your brains out one day. But the next day, the Cubs show up to offer hope.
What the Cubs offered the Phillies around midnight last night, however, was a chance to fall a game and a half behind the Expos.
They scored two unearned runs off Dickie Noles in the 15th inning. So the Phillies, who had – counting this one scored – 14 runs in six games, would somehow have to come up with two runs before they made three outs.
They not only did that, they got three, to pull off a big 6-5 win that breathed new life into the pennant race. Garry Maddox, who lost the game-turning hit in the sun Sunday, came off the bench to deliver the game-tying hit last night. Manny Trillo's two-out single won it.
"You'd have to say," whispered Dallas Green, after his team had battled to stay a half-game back, "that tonight was a clutch win."
Green wasn’t whispering because he was excited. He was whispering because he had laryngitis. No matter what the Phillies do in the next couple of days, at least they can be sure Green won't yell at them for it.
"I'll tell you, it's hell when a screamer and a yeller can't scream," Green chuckled.
Green probably wanted to scream, though, when Dickie Noles came on to pitch the 15th and walked the lead-off hitter. The leadoff hitter was Lynn McGlothen, tonight's starting pitcher. McGlothen was up there because the Cubs already had used 20 guys, and the rest of their pinch-hitters are hurt.
Then Noles fielded a one-out ground ball back to the mound and threw it into center to put men on first and third. Scot Thompson's sacrifice fly off Kevin Saucier knocked in one run. Carlos Lezcano's double knocked in a second.
Lefthander Doug Capilla, the sixth Cubs pitcher, was what awaited the Phils in the bottom of the 15th. But Capilla returned Noles' favor by walking both Lonnie Smith, the lead-off hitter, and Pete Rose. Then he wild-pitched the runners to second and third.
McBride chopped one over the mound to Kelleher at second. He got the first out. But Smith scored, and Rose moved up to third. The Phillies still needed to get him in, however.
Cubs manager Joey Amalfitano yanked Capilla and summoned Dennis Lamp to pitch to Mike Schmidt. Presumably, that was because Lamp was one of the few Cubs pitchers who hasn't thrown a Schmidt home-run ball this year. He got Schmidt to pop up for the second out, and the Phils were one out away from a very painful loss.
But the hitter was Maddox, who had started the night on the bench and had only come off it when Green had to pinch-run for his replacement, Del Unser, in the 11th. Maddox lined a 1-1 fastball into center, and it was tied. Tomorrow didn't come a moment too soon for Maddox.
"It was certainly a big hit, no question about that," Green said. "It came at a time we needed it. We couldn't have needed it any more than we did right there."
Keith Moreland, Bob Boone's stand-in, kept, it going with another single. Then Lamp walked Larry Bowa on four pitches. Trillo, who hit the ball hard all seven trips, stroked a 1-1 fastball through the middle. And all the scoreboard-watchers in Montreal groaned a little – if they were still awake.
It seemed like a week earlier that Green's lineup had gone up and three new names were in it. Out went Greg Luzinski, out went Boone, out went Maddox. In went Smith, in went Moreland, in went Unser.
The changes didn't hurt in the box score, but they didn't generate a lot more runs. Smith had two hits and walked twice. Moreland had two hits. Unser doubled in the 11th.
Naturally, it was the name Green didn't change that knocked in the Phillies' first three runs – a fellow named Rose.
Green said Sunday he was planning to talk to Rose about the once-preposterous possibility of-resting him for a day. But he never did, since there was as much chance of Rose asking out of the lineup as there is of Ronald Reagan asking out of the election.
Rose, who started the night 4-or-35, doubled in two runs for Larry Christenson in the third. Later, after the Cubs had taken a 3-2 lead, he drove in the tying run in the seventh with a ground ball.
Christenson took a no-walk two-hitter into the seventh. But one of the hits was Jerry Martin's 23d homer, a 400-foot shot into the lower deck in deep left-center in the fifth.
He started the seventh by walking Mike Tyson, who was batting left-handed for the 19th time in his life. (Tyson became a switch-hitter last week.) And Bill Buckner tied it with a double. After an out and an intentional walk, Martin singled to load the bases.
Tug McGraw came on, and the Phils couldn't quite turn a double play on Steve Dillard's hard grounder to Trillo. So the Cubs grabbed the lead temporarily. But the Phillies came right back and got even.
In the seven-inning intermission between runs that followed, McGraw made a diving catch of an Ivan DeJesus bunt and turned it into a double play, Tim McCarver got tossed out of the game in the 14th after pinch-hitting into a double play, Sparky Lyle and Warren Brusstar pitched very well for the Phillies, the Cubs messed up their second, third and fourth bunts of the night, and the Phillies left men in scoring position in the 11th and 12th.
That brings us to the 15th. Let's hear it for tomorrow.