Los Angeles Times - September 7, 1980
Dodgers Beat Phils Again
Monday Makes Big Catch and Homers, 7-3
By Mark Heisler, Times Staff Writer
The Dodger center fielder fled for the fence, reached it, jumped, got his glove a foot above it and there was what would otherwise have been a Bake McBride home run. Not long after that, the same Dodger center fielder hit a two-run homer himself.
This particular center fielder was not the 23-year-old Rudy Law, who started the season there, or the 24-year-old Pedro Guerrero, who got the next crack at the job, but the 34-year-old Rick Monday.
What Monday did Saturday night in Dodger Stadium was go 2 for 4, knock in two runs, score two and save two more with his catch, as the Dodgers beat the Philadelphia Phillies, 7-3, before a crowd of 45,995. Aside from that, he had an ordinary evening.
Despite that, the Dodgers came out of the night with their lead cut to one game over the Astros, who won a doubleheader over the Cardinals.
Monday, who got his latest shot only after Guerrero's knee injury, came into the game 9 for 27. Included were two doubles, a triple and two homers.
"It's especially gratifying," Monday said. "I'll be the first to admit it. It would have been very easy to do nothing but sit back and complain about not playing.
Welch Wins His 12th
"But you have to analyze the situation, what it's going to do to the overall attitude of the rest of the club if they get wrapped up in some feelings I have. So you go ahead and take the extra batting practice, do the extra running, so when you get the opportunity, it's not a big puff of air that goes out there."
Bob Welch worked the first seven innings and got his 12th victory. Steve Howe worked the last two innings, allowed one single and no other baserunner, and recorded his 15th save. And the Dodgers had run their record on this home stand to 9-1; they've also won 16 of 19.
The Phillies started the night behind Larry Christenson, a 26-year-old right-hander who in two seasons had fallen off a bicycle and broken his collarbone, gone on the disabled list with a groin pull, required surgery for a bone spur near his collarbone and been hit in the kneecap by a Jason Thompson line drive. Christenson was just coming off another groin pull the last time the Dodgers saw him, last May, when he got a victory over them. After that game, Christenson announced he was tired of being asked about being hurt.
He left after 1⅔ innings Saturday night with a groin pull.
By that time the Dodgers were ahead, 2-0, the runs having scored on a ground out by Bill Russell and Davey Lopes' double. Randy Lerch took over and Jay Johnstone blooped his first pitch over second base for an RBI single.
The Phillies tied it in the third. One run scored on Mike Scioscia's passed ball, the second on Lonnie Smith's single, the third on Mike Schmidt's sacrifice fly. With two out and a runner on first, McBride hit one over the center-field fence, except that it wasn't far enough over to keep Monday from pulling it back in.
Scioscia led off the fourth inning with one of his four singles (Scioscia started the evening hitting .255, finished at .284) but was forced at second on Russell's bunt. Dodger Manager Tom Lasorda, obviously intent on running the play until one of his men got it right, had Welch bunt, too, and Welch sacrificed Russell over to second base.
Lopes then hit a ground ball between short and third which went under Schmidt's glove for a single and it was 4-3. An inning later, with a runner on and two out, Lerch thought he had Monday struck out on a 1-2 fastball. Plate umpire Dave Pallone didn't think so. Lerch then threw Monday a changeup which Monday hit over the right-field fence.
The homer Ron Cey hit Friday night was the third of his career off Steve Carlton, which isn't that many, but then this is a pitcher with a lifetime 3.08 earned-run average. "It's not like I own him," Cey said before Saturday night's game. "He's too good for that to happen. But this is my eighth year facing him. I have a pretty good idea what he's trying to do. He's going to try to throw me breaking balls, get ahead in the count, probably waste the fastball. He doesn't come inside on me too often." What Cey hit out Friday was a 2-2 slider. Carlton's catcher, Bob Boone said later that Carlton had had a flat slider all night "If he did," Cey said, "we didn't hit too many of them"... In Don Stanhouse's last five outings, he has allowed no earned runs in eight innings, saved three games, won one. His ERA is down to 4.95... Dave Goltz vs. Dick Ruthven this afternoon at 1.
Rose, 39 Going on 10, Knows Just Where He Stands
By Jim Murray
You ask the average baseball star how he stands in his race to immortality and he frowns at you as if you've just asked him to dance or questioned his masculinity. It's not considered macho to keep tabs on your exploits. That's for four-eyed sportswriters or little kids with bubblegum cards.
The star growls at you, "I just hit'em, I don't count 'em." Or "I catch 'em, I don't measure 'em." Or he gives you the all-purpose "You saw it, didn't you? Well, just write about what you saw."
You come up to Pete Rose and say, "How's it goin', Pete?" and quick as a flash, Pete says, "I need 103 hits to tie Stan Musial on the all-time National League list. I need 245 hits to pass Hen ry Aaron and become the second-leading hitter of all-time. I need 665 to pass Ty Cobb and become the all-time leader.
Pete doesn't paw the ground or look down and blush and say "Aw, shucks" or tug at his forelock. There's no false modesty about Pete. In fact, there isn't much of any kind. Pete is never at a loss for a decimal point. He remembers every base hit he ever made. In fact, he can probably tell you the popups.
Pete is probably one of the great strikers of the baseball who ever lived. But you look at him and you don't see the grown man with "Philadelphia" or "Phillies" stitched across the broad chest. You see a little kid with his stockings hanging down around his sneakers, torn knickers, and a T-shirt with "Park Street Panthers" written across it in charcoal. He is what Norman Rockwell would draw for a Saturday Evening Post cover if he was doing a ballplayer. Pete looks as if he should have his dog with him.
You say, "How's the world treatin' you, Pete?" and he says, "I got 36 doubles, three more and I pass Lajoie. I got 648 lifetime doubles. I just passed Aaron.
If you ask, "How you feelin', Pete?" he will say, "I missed nine games in 10 years. When you get 200 hits a year, you can't miss many games. You realize what 200 hits a year is? That's 1½ hits every game. That's three hits every two games. You miss 20 games a year, forget it! That's 30 hits. I have to stay healthy."
If you finally bite the bullet and say, "Whaddaya hear from Ty Cobb, Pete?" Pete is ready. " I started to reach things faster than Cobb ever did in his career. I got to 1,000 hits faster, 1,500, 2,000, 2,500, 3,000. Cobb played 24 years. I average 198 hits a year. What did Cobb average a year – 175? 'Course, he played fewer games. 154 a year. But that's not my fault. He got 200 hits nine times. I got 200 hits 10 times. Nobody's ever done that before."
You ask Pete what he thinks of the economy and he says, "I got two more years left on my contract." If you ask him how he sees the election, he will probably say, "I think I should go in the Hall of Fame on the first ballot."
People keep waiting for the little boy to go out of Pete Rose. They keep waiting for him to show up at the ballpark with an "Oh, God, another day at the office!" attitude. They keep waiting for him to stop acting like a little kid seeing his first elephant. Pete is 39 years old, going on 10. He sometimes acts as if he's on his way to get his own autograph.
Usually when a player accomplishes what Rose has, he comes into the league with a "Can't Miss" label on his scouting report. Rose, a scrawny kid out of Cincinnati's Western Hills High School, came to the Reds with a "Can Miss" label.
"Average speed, below-average arm," the scout wrote. They thought he was a batboy, not a hit man. When Pete began to run veterans out of their positions, they felt as if they were being run over by a baby carriage.
Pete's secret was, he never let the little boy out He always acted as if he had arrived at the ballgame by tricycle. Locked inside that rock-hard 203-pound body is Skippy. He always looks as if he has frogs in his pocket.
Lots of people who get to chasing Ty Cobb forget the team in the rush. But they call Pete "Charlie Hustle," not "Charlie Me First" or "Charlie How'd The Team Come Out?"
Rose teams were in five league championships and one playoff and won four of them. They were in four World Series and won two. He wins league championships as well as batting championships. He is not a one-man show. It was never "Pete Rose and the Cincinnati Reds," it was "Pete Rose of the Cincinnati Reds."
Now Pete is of the Philadelphia Phillies. The Phillies are a very good team, which has always been one hit, one out, one inning, one hustle, one hard slide, one pat on the butt, or one kick in the butt away from the elusive pennant. They don't seem to know quite who they are.
But Rose knows who he is all right. The nearest thing to Cobb. This may be the year for the Phillies. Unless, of course, something terrible happens to them – Pete Rose grows up.