Reading Eagle - September 5, 1980
Walk Wins With Help From Pen
LOS ANGELES (AP) – Once upon a time, Philadelphia rookie right-hander Bob Walk landed in jail for throwing at Houston’s Cesar Cedeno – from the left-field pavilion at Dodger Stadium.
“Yeah, they hauled me off for throwing stuff,” said Walk, a native of suburban Newhall. “We always sat out in left field. That’s where the rowdies sit.”
Thursday night at Dodger Stadium, the 23-year-old Walk did his pitching from the mound, and for seven innings was headed for his first major league shutout. He settled for his 10th win in 14 decisions, a 3-2 victory over Los Angeles as 36-year-old Tug McGraw preserved the triumph with his 17th save.
The loss ended the Dodgers’ seven-game winning streak, but they remain atop the National League West, one-half game ahead of Houston. The Phillies have a one-game lead in the NL East over Pittsburgh and Montreal.
In the only other games scheduled in the National League Thursday, Montreal blanked San Francisco 4-0 and San Diego edged New York 3-2.
The Phillies took a 3-0 lead on home runs by Mike Schmidt (No. 36) and Greg Luzinski (No. 17), but when Walk gave up a leadoff single in the eighth to Dave Lopes, he was replaced by Warren Brusstar.
After Brusstar got the first out, Dusty Baker followed with his 27th homer, and the Dodgers were within a run.
Brusstar gave up two more singles before McGraw took the mound. He retired pinch hitter Joe Ferguson on a popup to shortstop and gave up a single in the ninth before getting 42-year-old pinch hitter Manny Mota, in his first at-bat al season, to ground to shortstop for the final out. Shortstop Larry Bowa threw the ball in to the dirt, but first baseman Pete Rose was able to dig it out.
“There’s something about this game that still gets me excited,” said McGraw. “I nearly had a seizure when Bowa threw that ball into the dirt. I could feel the tension and I’m sure it had to do with the donnybrook I cause.”
McGraw and the Dodgers’ Bill Russell were principals in a brawl on Aug. 25 in Philadelphia.
“Looking back, it was not a very proud moment in my life,” said McGraw, who hit Russell with a pitch just after Ferguson had singled home two runs on what was supposed to be an intentional walk. “In fact, I’m very embarrassed.”
Los Angeles starter Jerry Reuss was in search of his seventh straight victory. But Schmidt tagged him for a two-run homer in the first, the eighth home run Schmidt has hit off the left-hander.
“It may have been the eighth, but it was the first one this year,” said Schmidt. “He is trying to adjust, he’s a student of the game. But I hit what I see.”
Luzinski hit his homer in the seventh and Reuss, 16-5, left after seven innings. Bobby Castillo finished up for the Dodgers.