Wednesday, August 10, 1977
THE MICHIGAN DAILY *
Morris bolsters Tiger staff
By DAVE RENBARGER
Special To The Daily
DETROIT-Jack Morris needs
a nickname. Maybe that would
change his luck.
After all, the latest addition
to the young Tiger starting rota-
tion will be trying to follow in
the colossal footsteps of a couple
of other Bengals who faired -
pretty well in their freshman
campaigns-a. k. a. "The Bird".
and "The Rose."
WITHOUT AN off-beat pseu-
donym like his two predecessors,
it might seem a hit unlikely that
M o r r i s, the tall, 22-year-old
righthander purohased f r o m
Evansville only last July 25,
would strike fear in the hearts
of rival American League hit-
And, if you believe that one,
just ask some of the hitters on
the Texas Rangers what they
think of Morris.
And, if you're having trouble
thinking of a home-made nick-
name for the young flamethrow-
er, try "Jack the Jewel" be-
cause he's already tossed a pair
of pitching gems at the Rangers
in his first two major league
GETTING HIS first look at
big league batters, including the
All he needs is a nickname
likes of seasoned hitters Mike
Hargrove, Claudell Washington,
and Willie Horton among others,
Morris limited the Texans to a
pair of runs on only four hits in
nine innings in his starting de-.
but on July 31 in Arlington.
For-an encore, Morris return-
ed to Tiger Stadium last Friday
to face the Rangers again. This
time he refused to even yield a
base hit until two were gone in
the sixth, when Ranger Bump
Wills ruined his no-hit bid with
a double directly over third
Included in the two-game per-
formance was a string of 10%/
innings of hitless baseball. May-
be that wouldn't impress Cleve-'
land's Dennis Eckersley, but it's
not too bad for a kid in only his
second year of pro ball, fresh
out of the Triple A circuit.
"I THREW the ball fairly
well," Morris said in a docu-
mented understatement. "I had
all three of my pitches (fastball,
slider and change-up). When
that happens, I'm going to be
Despite the two impressive
outings and a 3.20 earned run
average, as compared to the
Tiger staff mark of 3.92, Morris
is still looknng for that first
major league victory. The Ti-
gers dropped both contests to
Texas in extra innings to leave
Morris with a couple of goose
eggs for a won-loss mark.
His regular turn in manager
Ralph Houk's five-man rotation
comes up again tonight, as Mor-
ris goes to the hill at Tiger-Sta-
dium against the Milwaukee
"THIS IS the first time I've
ever pitched against them (the
Brewers) so I'm just going to
have to go with what I've got,"
he said of tonight's assignment.
"I'll just have to talk to some
of the catchers who know some
of them to see what to throw
and what not to throw.
"I'm really looking forward to
that first win, too," he added
can get the guys out," he ex-
plained. "I know I can pitch and
have a lot of confidence in my-
self. A lot of people think it's
cockiness for a young kid to
come up with my attitude. But
I can't get too surprised just be-
ing here or I wouldn't be able
to do the job I'm capable of."
Even though Morris has en-
countered a touch of hard luck
in his first two non-decisions, he
prefers to bide his time and
wait for a few breaks.
softly. "YOU CAN'T get frustrated in
"It's one thing to get here (to this game," figured Morris.
the majors), but it's aonther "Even if you go 0-9 or 0-10 you
thing to stay here and win here. still gotta have a positive atti-
After all, that's my job and I tude. I know that things will
just hope that I can do it." start going my way if I keep
pitching the way I have."
MORRIS ISN'T just hoping to Morris' self-assured and con-
become a success on the major fident tone abruptly changed to
league level, he knows he will, one of admiration and respect
He is definitely not lacking in when his name was mentioned
the confidence department. in the same breath with the
"If you wanna win in this Tigers' two star righthanded
game, you gotta feel that you See MORRIS, Page 12
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