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March 30, 1978 - Image 9

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1978-03-30

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.. C. UNN

Last of the. Ninth

The Michigan Daily-Thursday, March 30, 1978--Page 9
Potent Reds avored in NL Wes

Tigers o today...
... may not be tomorrow
A H, THE BEST TIME of the year is quickly approaching. The weather-
man tells us it's spring, and that means along with the birds the
baseball teams are heading north. One week from today, the Tigers play
Toronto in their opener.
The Bengals appear to be an exciting and quickly developing team, and
with an easy early schedule dop't be surprised if they are right up there with
the Yankees and Red Sox, at least up to the All-Star break. If the aforemen-
tioned occurs, the young Tigers could acquire enough confidence to turn the
race into a three team affair. '
Of course some questionable areas must be erased, and one has to won-*
der what the Tigers would be like if they had a different philosophy regar-
ding free agents and player salaries.
Maybe there wouldn't be as many questionable areas, or then again maybe
Jason Thompson would have never gotten the chance to develop if Jim Cam-
pbell had bought a first baseman.
Spender or miser
Since the death of the reserve clause, which turned the market into a
sellers (or players in this case) market, it has been interesting to watch the
reactions of the teams. The Yankees and the Tigers are exact opposites on
this issue, and both have valid reasons to a point.
George Steinbrenner, the Yankee owner,' runs the ballclub as a
businessman. He wheels and deals for players as though they were shares of
stock. He has two primary goals - to assemble a winning baseball team and
to make money. Steinbrenner does not believe free agents are good for
baseball, but since that's the way things are, so be it.
John Fetzer, the Tiger owner, who lets his GM Jim Campbell do the
dealing believes that a baseball team should be built through some trading,
but primarily through its own farm system. He refuses to pay one or two
select ballplayers a few million dollars, when the rest of the roster receives
considerably less.
Fetzer's reasoning was proved sound by all the bickering among the
Yankees, who had prima donna players clashing their egos all season. But
one has to question whether his reasoning is entirely due to the philosophy
mentioned above or if in fact he just doesn't want to spend the money.
The Tiger owner appears to cut corners as much as possible with
players' salaries, and if his ways do not change with the current market,
players such as Thompson or Steve Kemp may not be around too much
longer. That's the dilemma the Tigers may be facing in the near future,
whether to pay their home-grown players what they are worth according to
the current market or risk losing them to the free agent market.
A fork in the road
Already, the free spending teams have forced the more conservative
teams to trade more. And sooner or later, the latter will have to spend their
money, or just be pseudo-farm clubs for the money teams. Of course, all of
this is based on the assumption that baseball will continue to be a
millionaire's monopoly game, which in turn causes inflated player salaries.
Right now the Tigers are at the crossroads. They have an enormous
amount of young talent, and a successful year will mean trouble at the
bargaining table. Already Kemp and Thompson have shown signs of unhap-
piness with Campbell. This time they signed, but with a good season or two
they may not the next time.
The people who will lose the most will be the faithful and patient Tiger
fans. They have watched some raw talent develop into fine major league
ballplayers. It would be terrible if these loyal fans could not benefit from the
devotion they've shown during the rebuilding years. How good a baseball
town can Detroit be?

In each of the past four seasons the National
League representative to the World Series has come
from the Western Division, and there is no reason to
believe that this trend will change in 1978. The Cin-
cinnati Reds will see that it-won't.
Last year the Reds fell way behind the Los An-
geles Dodgers, as the Dodgers won 22 of their first
26 games. On May 7 they were 1012 games back and
were never seriously challenged for the lead,
THE DODGERS won't repeat as divisional
champs this year. Why not? Reds' manager Sparky
Anderson answers in two words-Tom Seaver.
Seaver, whom the Reds acquired in June, posted
wins in 14 of 17 decisions, and is expected to
duplicate this performance for an entire year.
Besides pitching the Reds to the championship,
Seaver's knowledge and experience will undoub-
tedly aid the other Cincinnati hurlers, most notably
righthanders Paul Moskau (6-6) and Bill Bonham
Cincinnati's only question mark is their starting
staff. If Moskau and Bonham succeed in starting
roles, the Big Red Machine should roll, because
they have nothing else resembling a weakness.
THEIR BULLPEN, anchored by Pedro Borbon
and Dale Murray, is dependable, as are the reserve
players. Top rookie prospect Harry Spilman (.373 in
Class AA last year) and fleet Dave Collins give An-
derson more flexibility in late innings.
But it is the Reds' starting lineup that causes op-
ponents to shudder. Catch Johnny Bench, coming
off another 100 RBI season, is back, as are Joe
Morgan (second base), third baseman Pete Rose,
and awesome George Foster. (Rose, incidentally, is
only 34 safeties away from reaching the coveted
3000 hit plateau).
Dan Driessen (.300), Dave Concepcion, Cesar
Geronimo, and Ken Griffey (.318) round out the
Cincy lineup.
Los Angeles will be hard-pressed even to make a

run at the Reds. Nine key performers who
catapulted the Dodgers into the-Series were having-
their finest season. It is questionable whether
second baseman Davey Lopes can ever again hit
.283 with 11 home runs. Can so-so relief pitcher Elias
Sosa best last year's ERA of 1.97? I doubt it.
ALTHOUGH THEY hardly compare with Cincin-
nati on a man-to-man basis, the Dodgers are a for-
midable bunch in their own right. Los Angeles led
the league in home runs (191), the heavy artillery
being provided by Steve Garvey, Ron Cey, Reggie
Smith, and Dusty Baker. Shortstop Bill Russell
directs a solid infield and rifle-armed Steve Yeager
is an outstanding backstop.
However, the Dodgers' reserves are weak.
Backup catcher Jerry Grote4aging pinch hitters Vic
Davalillo and Manny Mota, and a few utility in-
fielders comprise a less-than-powerful bench.
A trademark of Los Angeles during the past
decade has been its outstanding pitching staff.
Second-year skipper Tom Lasorda hopes to con-
tinue this tradition. Tommy John recovered from a
severe arm injury to lead the Dodgers with 20 win-
s, but at age 35 he can't get any better. Don Sutton,
Burt Hooten, Rick Rhoden and Doug Rau complete
a balanced starting rotation.
THE OFF-SEASON acquisition of fastballing
fireman Terry Forster bolsters the Dodger relief
corps. He joins such established performers as
knuckleball artist Charlie Hough, Mike Garman,
and Sosa.
The improving Houston Astros will both thrill and
frustrate their faithful throughout the year. Its
young but talented crew of pitchers led the league in
complete games and had a fine 3.54 ERA.
Looming large in manager Bill Virdon's plans is
5'8" righthander J.R. Richard. His mates are
Joaquin Andujar, Joe Niekro, and Mark
Lemongello. Ken Forsch keys a solid bullpen.
The Astros have been experimenting with Enos
Cabell at shortstop and reports from spring training
indicate that the transplanted third baseman is not

adapting well to his new role. If Cabell can't cut it,
the anemic-hitting Roger Metzger will retain his
HOUSTON'S LINEUP features fine hitting from
Joe Ferguson, Bob Watson, Cesar Cedeno, and Jose
Cruz. Team speed is also an asset, the Atros
stealing 187 bases last year.
On paper the San Diego Padres seem potent.
Their roster is sprinkled with big names like
Gaylord Perry, Randy Jones, 'Oscar Gamble and
Rollie Fingers. Outfielders George Hendrick, Dave
Winfield, and Gene Richards each batted over .290.
last season.
The key to San Diego's season is the health of
Jones and Brent Strom. If Jones and Strom com-
pletely recover from elbow surgery and revert to
their 1976 form, the Padresmay be a surprise.
San Francisco mentor Joe Altobelli must restore
tranquility among his troops in order for the Giants
to avert the cellar. Pitcher John (The Count) Mon-
tefusco and third baseman Bill Madlock exchanged
punches earlier this spring, and this ruckus has
created strife among their teammates.
THE TRADE for Vida Blue has raised some hopes
out in the Bay Area. Along with Blue, Ed Halicki
Randy Moffitt, and Gary Lavelle combine to form
an impressive aggregate of pitchers. Opponents
won't score many runs in San Francisco this season.
Neither will the Giants. Veteran slugger Willie
McCovey, a favorite at Candlestick Park, and
Madlock are counted upon to, supply much-needed,
long-ball clout. An off year from either spells
Disaster for the Giants.
When Bobby Cox agreed to manage the Atlanta
Braves, he inherited a team which lost 101 games
last season and finished with a team ERA of 4.85. -:
The chances of improving upon these statistics are
good, only because they can't get mdch worse.
Promising Barry Bonnell and Jeff Burroughs (114
RBI) are standouts on a team with an average age
of 24. My advice to Bobby Cox is: patience.


Howe celebrates 50th

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP)-A living
and playing legend, Gordie Howe cele-
brated his 50th birthday last night with
teammates from 30 years ago. Then he
played a game with the New England
Whalers, only three of whom were born
in 1946, Howe's first year in major
league hockey.
"I don't feel 50 years old," said How,
who played for the Detroit Red Wings
for 25 seasons. And he really isn't 50,
since his actual birthday is Friday.
"It scares me, I should hurt more af-
ter a game these days than I do," said
Howe. "The younger guys end up sorer
the next day than I do."
An incredible athlete, Howe leads the
World Hockey Association team in
scoring with 34 goals and 56 assists for
90 points. He is already talking about
playing next season, when he is expec-
ted to be a grandfather for the first
time. His sons, Mark, 22, and Marty, 24,
play on the Whalers, and Mark's wife
Ginger is eight months pregnant, ex-
pecting the couple's first child.
Going into Wednesday night's game,
Howe had played in 70 of the second-
place Whalers' 74 games. Every time
he skates on to the ice, he adds to his
bucketful of records, including most
seasons, 30; most games, 2,252; most
goals, 1,028; most assists, 1,457; most

points, 2,483; most penaly minutes,
2,297; most years in playoffs, 23; most
All-Star team selections, 23, and most
Most Valuable Player awards, 73.
Howe scored his first goal in 1946,
while playing his first game for the
Detroit Red Wings of the National
Hockey League.
Howe's last NHL goal, number 786,
was on April 3, 1971. Shortly afterwar-
ds, he retired to an executive position
with the Red Wings. He was lured out of
retirement by the Houston Aeros and
scored his first WHA goal on Nov. 3,
1973. He went on to become the first
man to notch 1,800 goals, bagging the
big one on Dec. 7, 1977 in Birmingham,
The plans for Wednesday night's pre-
game celebration included on-ice
tributes from several of Howe's
longtime friends. Some of his old
Detroit teammates scheduled to be
here were Sid Abel and Tommy Ivan.
Also expected to be here were some
Detroit-area cronies, including
baseball great Al Kaline, tennis star
Tony Trabert and track immortal Jesse
There also was a 6-foot by 3 -foot
cake shaped like a hockey rink and
bearing Howe's facial likeness.

It's A Birthday
Sae-A -rtioSn
We're celebrating our first year
in Ann Arbor with great savings
for you.


M baseball schedule '78

Apr. 5
Apr. 7
Apr. 8
Apr. 11
Apr. 12
Apr. 15
Apr. 16
Apr. 19
Apr. 20
Apr. 29
Apr. 30
May 3
May 6
May 7
May 10
May 13
May 14
May 20

WESTERN MICHIGAN (2) .................Ann Arbor
TOLEDO (2) ........... .......... Ann Arbor
Bowling Green (2) ..................... Bowling Green
BOWLING GREEN (2) .................... Ann Arbor
Toledo (2) .................................... Toledo
DETROIT (2)........................... Ann Arbor
'Wisconsin (2) .............. ......... Madison
Minnesota (2) ........................... Minneapolis
Western Michigan (2) ..............Kalamazoo
OAKLAND (2).............................. Ann Arbor
Eastern Michigan (2) ....................... Ypsilanti
ILLINOIS (2) ........................... Ann Arbor
PURDUE (2) ............................ Ann Arbor
Notre Dame (2) ........................... South Bend
INDIANA (2) ............. . .................Ann Arbor
OHIO STATE (2)........................Ann Arbor
EASTERN MICHIGAN (2) ................. Ann Arbor
Northwestern (2) .......................... Evanston
Iowa (2) .................................... Iowa City
WAYNE STATE (2)........................ Ann Arbor
Michigan State (1) ...................... East Lansing

All Interknit Wool Ski Sweaters. $14.95
reg. $28 to $38

All Wool Ski Caps
reg. $9

" " 0 0 0 0 0 i 't " 1

Every Vest in stock ..
reg. $35 to $45
Ski Style Down Jackets
reg. $60

. $2.99

Do You Fear
-freezing or blanking on exams?
-not being able to concentrate on studying 'cause you're
-not enough time to get everything done?
If Yes, Attend On
SATURDAY, APRIL 8,12:30-3:30
Prepering For Finals Workshop
offered by
The Peer Counselors in Academic Anxiety
Reduction of Counseling Services
-relaxation techniques
-strategies to efficiently manage remaining time for
papers, exams, projects


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Save yourself some green.
All our yellow down parkas will
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for, this three, day sale.{
Smooth Shell Parka. Reg. $90 Now $54.95
6-40 Parka with Hood Reg. $85 Now $49.95
Taffeta Super Sweater Reg. $55 Now $34095

. .,

SAVE $10 to $20




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