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March 30, 1972 - Image 11

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1972-03-30

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THE MICHIGAN DAILY

P®ge Eleven

THE MICHIGAN DAiLY Page Eleven

-tadt # e4*.ect4 --

-1--

Got dem Ole ..«
baseball blues
-- --- ---john papanek-i__n
1ESUS, another baseball season around the corner.
And just like always, sportswriters are cranking out endless
drivel about holdouts, walkouts, salary disputes and what have
you. Vida Blue retires at age 22, Richie Allen turns badboy
again, Denny McLain will bomb with a new team. Casey Stengel
has crabs.
Who cares? Obviously somebody must, but damned if I
can figure out why. I love baseball, don't get me wrong. But
to me baseball is more than a game, it's a whole experience
that's pure pleasure to take in while stretching out com-
fortably in the sun on a Sunday afternoon.
It has a tradition that really doesn't get you down. In 130
years it has hardly changed a bit, with scores of fresh young
faces joining major league baseball every year with all the en-
thusiasm that the kids had back in the '20s.
- Only, it's a damn shame what has happened to the game.
Not the fact that the Aarons, Yaztrzemskis and Mays' are
pulling in $150 grand a year. It's perfectly apparent that they
deserve every penny. A look at the National League's attend-
ance figures for 1971 shows that the circuit attracted over 17
million customers, an all-time record.
It's the interaction between players, front offices, and
4 fans that gets me down. It's easy enough to see -the evolution
of a sport like baseball from a recreational game to a spec-
tator sport. It's our nature to prefer watching someone
else do something well, rather than working at it ourselves.
The big business nature of professional sports has taken
a lot of the enjoyment out of it for me. When I go to a ball
game, I want to see great players playing baseball. Whether
Tom Seaver wore his Sears Double-Knit Suit to the ballpark
doesn't concern me at all. And if Jerry Grote doesn't like blacks,
orsif Ernie Banks is an Uncle Tom, or if Mickey Mantle likes to
look up girls' dresses, that's their business. , . ,
So if .ida Blue thinks he worth $92,000 after achieving
super-stardom as a rookies, he's entitled to. But I don't want to
hear his boss Charlie Finley saying that the fans are going to
have to pay the difference in higher ticket prices. If they want
to see the team play, they'll pay the money. They did in 1971,
and attendance at professional sports shows little signs of
dying.
If baseball's reserve clause (the clause in a baseball play-
er's contract that makes him the exclusive property of his
team) was revoked, Blue could play for the A's one year at Fin-
ley's highest offer,,then re-negotiate with any other team as a
free agent. When Curt Flood was traded from the St. Louis
Cards to the Philadelphia Phillies, he challenged the reserve
clause in court, in spite of the fact that he commanded a
salary of $90,000.
Flood compared himself to a slave and argued that no
matter how much he was being paid, it was immoral for
him to be bought and sold, and forced to move from city
to city at the whim of his employer. Flood's case is still on
appeal.
Now there is a new wave of discontent in major league
baseball and the owners are grumbling again. The players are
seeking to increase their retirement pension fund, and 24
teams have already agreed to strike should the owners refuse
to settle. The owners, probably the last vestiges. of American
slave trade, are griping that all the $100,000-plus salaries are
breaking them. Thus it is the faps who will suffer in the long
run.
Now this argument is unacceptable, because ticket prices
are going to go up no matter what happens. And 'this being
a country full of spectators and hero worshippers, the owners
needn't worry about dropping attendance as long as the quality
of the game remains at a high level, and the talent isn't spread
too thin by expansion.
The players have a valid stand. It isn't the superstars who
are fighting for the higher pension; in fact, some of the top
players, "Uncle Toms" to their teammates, have allied with the
owners to avoid the strike so they can collect their big money.
It's the little guys who are behind this fight. The guys who
don't last in the majors more than five years or make more
than $20,000 a year.
What's wro;ig with $20,000 a year, you ask? Well, nothing,
except that it can end at any time - either with an injury,
disagreement with baseball brass, or simply a loss of ability.
A major league ballplayer has played baseball almost
all his life. Say he graduates from high school and signs a
contract. If he's lucky, he'll make the majors in three or four
years. If he lasts five years, he's eligible for a .pension. If
not, it's tough luck.
But once he's out of the game and doesn't have the name
to be a sportscaster or an executive or a coach of some kind,
he's got nothing. He's got no education because he spent all his
time playing ball. The owner got hold of him, exploited his
talents, and when the player was washed up, got rid of him.

It's damn tough to be a ballplayer if you're not a star. Al-
ways on the road, no time to spend with your family, having to
take a lot of crap from people who might be a lot less intelli-
gent than you. Then you face that ultimate ignominy. You're
fair game to be bought and sold indiscriminately like your
great-grandfather might have been down in Alabama a hun-
dred years ago.

Wings

0l~

Toronto

I. U

wins

SID CLEMONS
GETS DOWN
with good Progressive Rock

From Wire Service Reports front.
NEW YORK-Goyette picks up The Red Wings, who have had
the loose puck, fires it in the De- to rely on such stalwart defense-,
troit zone. Rousseau beats his man men as Ron Stackhouse-and Larry
to the puck, he's behind the net. Johnston, almost won the game but
The Rangers are dangerous. A their third-period play -was too un-

pass in front to Hadfield, he
scores!
That was the goal that brought
the high-flying Detroit Red Wings
back to earth last night as the
New York Rangers came back
from a two-goal deficit to pull out
a stunning 2-2 tie.
Detroit goaile Andy Brown was
outstanding in the nets as he turn-
ed back shot after Ranger shot,
until Vic Hadfield realized he could
still skate without his two injured
linemates holding his hands. Play-
ing without Rod Gilbert and Jean
Ratelle, Hadfield scored twice in
the final three minutes of play to
send the Motor Cityites' playoff
hopes spinning.
Until the outburst by Hadfield,
Brown had done a fine job of nurs-
ing the slim 2-0 lead fashioned by
his mates in the first period. Nick
Libett, playing well under the pres-
sure of the race, connected for
his 31st marker at the six-minute
mark. Mickey Redmond scored his
42nd goal with only three seconds
remaining in the stanza to send
the Wings buzzing into the locker-
room.
The second frame saw the action
completely dominated by the New
Yorkers as they fired 15 shots at
Brown, the unmasked marvel, who
stood his ground amid some faulty
defensive play by his men up

- -- - -

i

believably anemic.
Instead of trying to add to their
margin, the Detroiters came out
like chickens and tried to sit onf
their goose egg. When the Rangers'
Jim Neilson drew a penalty the
Red Wings attempted to stall and
waste the time.
* * *
Toronto tears
TORONTO-The Toronto Maple
Leafs struck for four goals in the
first period to upset the injury-
riddled Boston Bruins 4-1 yester-
day and maintain their hopes for
a National Hockey League play-
off berth,
The triumph, combined with
Detroit's 2-2 tie with the New
York Rangers, gave Toronto a
two-point lead over the Red Wings
in their battle for the fourth and
final playoff spot in the East Di-
vision.
Toronto hosts New York Satur-
day and is in Boston Sunday. The
Red Wings have their final game
Sunday at Chicago.
* * *

tlaily
sports
NIGHT EDITOR:
CHUCK DRUKIS
tional Hockey League's Stanley
Cup playoffs.
The Seals jumped out to a 3-0
lead on frst period goals by Ivan
Boldired and Rick Smith and a
second period tally by Peg Leach.
Ron Schock scored for the Pen-
guins to make it 3-1, but Stan Gil-
bertson regained the three-goal
lead for California a short time
later.
The Penguins then poured in
four straight goals, the first by
Syl Apps late in the second period.
Pittsburgh came alive in the final
frame as Greg Polis scored his
27th goal of the season and Nick
Harbaruk came up with the tying
point.

The Penguins dominated the
contest, holding the Seals to 20
shots on. goal.
* * *
Hawks tie
CHICAGO-Rival coaches Billy
Reay of Chicago and Scotty Bow-
man of Montreal nearly came to
blows at the conclusion of a wild
5-5 tie in a National Hockey
League game last night.
Serge Savard had pulled the
Canadiens into a tie at 19:21 of
the final period and the teams
were leaving the ice at the final
horn when Reay and Bowman ex-
changed words at center ice.
Reay moved toward Bowman
and shoved him before officials
came between them and herded
them off the ice.
The game had no bearing on the
final National Hockey League
standings.
Montreal learned that it would
finish no higher than third when
news arrived between the second
and third periods that the second-
place New York Rangers had tied
Detroit 2-2.

WNRZ

at NOON
102.9

on
Ann Arbor

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Penguins pounce
PITTSBURGH (A') - The Pitts-
burgh Penguins, trailing twice by
three gpals, rallied in the final
period to defeat the California
Seals 5-4 last night to weep alive
their hopes for a berth in the Na-

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BOSTON tP)}- Unleashing their
patented fast breaks every time
they were needed, the Boston Cel-
tics returned to the National Bas-
ketball Association playoffs they
once ruled with a 126-108 victory
over the Atlanta Hawks here last
night.
The victory gave the Celtics,
the NBA's Atlantic Division cham-
pions, a 1-0 edge in the best-of-7
first round series over Atlanta.,
runner-up in the Central Division.
Michigan's diamondmen in
the rough, see page nine.
If the issue was in doubt beyond
the first quarter, the Celtics set-
tled it early in. the fourth period
when a spurt sparked by John
Havlicek, Dave Cowens and Jo Jo
White broadened a 95-83 third
quarter leadetoda 119-96 margin
within six minutes.
Havlicek, who had a game high
32 points, led the Celtics on their

first splurge- of the night when
they shot from a 30-28 disadvant-
age at the end of the first quarter
into an eight-point lead -in the
first two minutes of the second
period.
Atlanta controlled much of the
early going solely on the perform-
ance of Lou Hudson, who scored
17 in the first quarter but was
halted effectively thereafter by
Don Nelson and Tom Sanders.
Hudson finished with 29 points.
After Atlanta narrowed the gap
to 62-57 early in the third quarter
Havlicek, Cowens and reserve
Steve Kuberski, who had 15 points
and 13 rebounds, set the Celtic.
on another fast breakingcharge.
Within six minutes Boston had
opened an 87-67 lead and Atlanta
never seriously threatened again. !
For Boston, winning for the fifth
time in as many games against
the Hawks this year, White added
25 points while Cowens, who led a
strong Celtic rebounding effort!
with 16, had 23.
WaltBellamy had 20 for Atlanta
and Pete Maravich had 17.
The series resumes Friday night
in Atlanta.
S C ORE S I
EXHIBITION BASEBALL
Cincinnati 12, Philadelphia 6
Texas 6, Atlanta 0
Boston 5, Houston 3
Los Angeles 6, Minnesota 2
Milwaukee 5, Cleveland 1
Kansas City 6, Detroit 2
San Francisco 8, Chicago (N) 6
ABA BASKETBALL
Virginia 123, Memphis 99
Indiana 128, Pittsburgh 113

313 S. State St., Ann Arbor, Mich.

761-5880

0

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ECONO-CAR
SPRING WEEKEND SPECIAL
Get with it . .. it's springtime!

Shed the coats and boots and head for the
country in a new Ford or Chevy.
From Friday noon through Monday noon
pay only:

Howard
signs paet a
POMPANO BEACH, Fla. (P) -
Frank Howard, the slugging out-
fielder - first baseman of the
Texas Rangers and their No. 1
gate. attraction, reportedly has
agreed to sign for $120,000, the
same salary he received last year.
Ranger spokesman Bert Haw-
kins , said Howard's salary last
year was $120,000 and it's "the
same this year."
Ranger owner Bob Short said
earlier yesterday that Howard is
now the second highest paid play-
er in the American League. Carl
Yastremski of Boston Red Sox
made $167,000 last year, Hawkins
said.
The $120,000 for a one-year con-
tract Howard is expected to sign
is about midway between the
$96,000 Short offered and the
$150,000 Howard sought.
Howard said he will begin
workouts today and wants to play
right away, although Hawkins
said that was not probable.

SPR NC

$17.50
and only
a Mile

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USE YOUR.
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City Council Election This Monday

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ID

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Give The
Bear a reak
You're the only one who can.
Because all Smokey can do is ask you to help prevent forest fires.
He can't break your matches. Or douse your campfires. Or snuff out
your cigarets.
Only you can.
So, please, lend Smokey a hand.
And maybe while you're at it, lend him your voice too: tell people to
give the beara break.
He deserves it.
So does America.

BE YOUR OWN LANDLORD
THIS SUMMER !
LIVE IN A CO-OP

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