Page 16-Tuesday, June 13, 1978-The Michigan Daily
by Henry Engelhardt
... but always fall short
O/n one hand you have your thrill of victory, and on the other hand you
have the Chicago Cubs .
The name "Cubs" is a perfect description of this franchise: very lovable
and cute, but not quite mature enough, tough enough, to compete in the
Just think, the Tigers haven't won a pennant for 10 years. Say, that's a
The Cubs haven't won a pennant in 32 seasons. The atomic age has yet to
see the Cubs win a pennant. Man can go to the moon, but the Cubs can't win
the National League. There are machines that will blow-dry your hair in an
instant, but the Cubs cannot finish a season in first place.
Picture the scene after the Cubs lost the 1945 World Series to the Tigers.
TheCub general manager says how the end of the war will hurt the Cubs and
they'll have to rebuild: "Yep, we're gonna hafta start from scratch. I'd say
it'll be another 35 or so years before we win another pennant. If that soon."
"Oh go on," the writers scoff, "a team can't help but win a pennant
every decade or two." Wanna bet.
Though at the moment the Cubs are enjoying moderate success, this
season looks like the 33rd in a row in which at least one other team will finish
higher than the Cubs in the league (10 years of 10in the divisional setup).
Being a student of Chicago National League baseball all my young, and
as of yet pennant-lacking, life, I jumped at the opportunity to represent The
Daily at College Sportswriters Day in Wrigley Field last Saturday. Here the
Cubs convinced me that they are no more headed towarda pennant than my
folks are to an Elvis Costello concert.
After holding the San Diego Padres to but one hit on Friday, Cub pit-
chers finally located the groove. The Padres ripped four Cub pitchers for 10
runs and 16 hits (at least one an inning).
Donnie Moore, who took the loss, was Cub hurler number two. His per-
formance exemplifies the temptations of quality that so totally frustrate the
Moore came on with one out in the Padre fifth, runners on first and third
and the Cubs losing 4-3, after being behind 4-0. Moore quickly fired a number
of bullets which whiffed the next two Padres and retired the side.
Then the Cubs, in their typical teasing, adorable, anguishing style,
scored three runs in the home half of number five, taking a 7-4 lead.
They looked to be in great shape. Moore was being considered for
Player of the Month honors and the 32,269 in attendance (capacity around
36,000) roared its approval.
The Padres (or was it the Yankees in disguise?) pounded out four runs
off Moore in the sixth, added two more against somebody else later on and
won the game 10-8. I've never seen a pitcher walk from the mound to the
dugout after an inning any slower than Moore did after the sixth.
It is all so sad.
A whole city is stepped on because its lousy National League baseball
team is just that. Any city argument with a Chicagoan can be easily won
with the question: "Yeah, but when was the last time the Cubs won the pen-
nant?" "Ur, uh, um, er, stammer, cough ... " comes the reply.
Ernie Banks, who played for the Cubs and only the Cubs for 18 years,
never played in a post-season classic. Banks, who is known as Mr. Cub, hit
over 500 homeruns in his career and might have challenged Ruth and Aaron
except he never got to hit against Cub pitching.
He was in the dugout, smiling away, before Saturday's game. "Wrigley
Field, greatest place in the world," he said.
And it is rather a nice place. How many other major league baseball
parks are called "fields?" None. Wrigley is sort of a cross between refur-
bished steel of Yankee Stadium and the unpretentious diamonds on Fuller
Field. A small, polite, friendly place is Wrigley Field.
"See the scoreboard?" Banks asked, pointing in the direction of center
field. "Only hand-operated scoreboard left in the majors."
There are no lights at Wrigley Field either. If the sun does not rise one
morning they may still play ball in the Astrodome, or Shea or even Tiger
Stadium, but not in Wrigley Field.
Ivy, and not rubber cushions, grow on the brick outfield walls. And the
fans actually boo the umpires and sing the National Anthem,
Cub baseball is rich and thick with tradition. Win or lose the fans always
turn out. They come for the relaxed atmosphere (September is usually the
most relaxed month of all-flag chasing is'a spring sport in Chicago); the
game itself (though the Cubs don't always do it justice); to scream, yell,
keep score, watch the opposite sex, drink beer, eat hot dogs, get autographs
from the visitors and a hundred other individual reasons.
But of course, they're there because they love the Cubs.
Tigers drop to fourth
as Milwaukee shells
starter Wileox, 7-4
By DAVE RENBARGER
Specilto e Daily
DETROIT - The Detroit Tigers
and the Milwaukee Brewers engaged in
a little give-and-take baseball last night
at Tiger Stadium. But after the first
four innings of play, it was apparent to
the 14,472 Family Night fans that the
Brewers were destined to do most of the
taking, handing the Tigers a 7-4 set
Tiger sluggers Rusty Staub and
Jason Thompson gave starting pitcher
Milt Wilcox a 3-0 edge on a pair of first-
inning homers, but the Brewers took
advantage of Wilcox's ineffectiveness
to tally six times in the next three in-
IN THE EARLY going it looked like
the two teams would trade runs all
evening long, as the Tigers led 4-3 after
three. But suddenlty the Detroit bats
stopped producing, as Brewer reliever
Bob McClure pitched five innings of
one-hit ball to pick up the win.
The defeat toppled the Tigers from
their third-place perch in the standings.
Boston, New York And Balitmore head
the AL East, and the fifth-place
Brewers crept to within a half game of
Detroit with the triumph.
A 13-hit attack by Milwaukee proved
to be too much for Wilcox and his two
successors. Rookie second baseman
Paul Molitor led the assault, going 4-
for-5 on the evening, while the Tigers
managed just six hits altogether.
WILCOX ABSORBED his 'urth loss
of the campaign against an cual num-
ber of victories. It was the Tiger
righthander's worst outing all year as
he gave up six runs on nine hits in just
Milwaukee manager George Bam-
berger gave bullpen man Ed Rodriguez
his first starting assignment of the
year, and the righthander responded by
allowing back-to-back homers by Staub
Leftfielder Steve Kemp drew-a one-
out walk, his 48th of the year, prior to
Staub's blast which just cleared a
leaping Ben Oglivie's outstretched
glove. It was the second homer in as
many days for the Tiger DH and the two
RBI's gave him a total of 44, second
best in the league.
CLEANUP BATTER Thompson
followed, connecting so well on
Rodriguez' full-count serve that Oglivie
never had to move a muscle. Thom-
pson's 15th four-bagger landed two-
thirds of the way up in the empty upper
But Wilcox could not hang on to the 3-
0 cushion, giving up a two-run homer by
Brewer Gorman Thomas in the second
that signified the beginning of the end
An unearned run crossed the plate in
the Brewer third. Molitor, who entered
the game hitting .309, was given a new
life when Thompson dropped his pop-up
near the Brewer dugout.
MOLITOR THEN singled to center
and moved to third with a stolen base
and a sacrifice. Larry Hisle got him
home with a shot to deep short that Alan
Trammell picked up but could do
The Tigers struck back in their third
to take a brief 4-3 lead. Leadoff man
Lou Whitaker and-Kemp both singled. A
sacrifice fly by Staub and a fielder's
choice moved Whitaker around the
The see-sawing contest finaly tipped
toward Milwaukee, as the Brewers
came up with a two-out, three-run rally
in the fourth to go ahead 6-4. Wilcox and
his replacement Steve Foucault were
hurt by some shoddy defense twice in
WITH RUNNERS on second and
third, third baseman Phil Mankowski
let Don Money's smash get past him for
the tying run. After Ralph Houk sum-
moned Foucault, Dave May lined one to
right. Tim Corcoran came in a few
steps, then leaped as the ball sailed
over his glove for a two-run double.
The Department of Recreational
Sports is pleased to announce that a full
range of drop-in, intramural, club and
"special event" activities will be of-
fered for spring/summer term.
* Get applications in early for sum-
mer softball. Team entry deadline:
June 30. Call 763-1313 for more infor-
* The sailing club meets every Thur-
sday evening at 7:45 at 311 West
For more information about any
recreational sports activities, call one
of our hotlines; 764-8247 (CCRB);
764-6429 (NCRB); 763-0050 (IMSB).
Baltimore s, Seattle 4
New York 2, Oakland0
Minnesota at Toronto, ppd.
chicago1, cleveland o
Milwsaukee 7, Detroit 4
Boston 10, california 9
Atlanta 2, St. Louis 1
Los Angeles 6, Philadelphsia 5