The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida on December 12, 1976 · Page 102
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The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida · Page 102

West Palm Beach, Florida
Issue Date:
Sunday, December 12, 1976
Page 102
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Palm Beach Post-Times, Sunday, December 12, 1976 E7 I Thompson Never Thought He'd Lose : lip1,. JSSWk f 'Danny Thompson was not the most gifted player In major league baseball. He couldn't run as fast as some, he couldn't hit with the power of most and he couldn't throw as hard as many. But above all, he was the most complete human being I believe I've ever known.' - Rangers' Dan O'Brien Frank Quilici "He'd get fevers, chills and was sometimes in awful pain after his treatments, but he certainly didn't want any pity from anybody. There had to be a tremendous amount of pressure on the inside." Griffith was on the West Coast for baseball meetings, but his wife, Natalie, was saddened by the news. "I loved that boy so much and he knew it," Mrs. Griffith said. "He was always one of my favorites." Killebrew said Thompson was an inspiration to everyone. Thompson began an immunization treatment at the Mayo Clinic after the 1974 season. He often suffered from violent reactions to the immunizations. The Twins drafted Thompson in the secondary phase of the major league draft in 1968 after an All-America collegiate career at Oklahoma State. He quickly moved through the Twins' farm system and joined the parent club in midseason 1970. He enjoved his best year in 1972 when he hit .276. Thompson is survived by his widow, Jo, daughters Tracy, 7, and Dana 2, his parents, two brothers and two sisters. The funeral is scheduled for Monday at Burlington, Okla. From Por Wire Srvic$ When he arrived at Arlington Stadium last summer, infielder Danny Thompson told his new employers, the Texas Rangers, he would be willing to sign a contract for $35,000. Rangers' general manager Dan O'Brien asked him if he would accept $38,000. "I was flabbergasted," said Thompson, who explained Minnesota owner Calvin Griffith's best offer to him last spring was a $500 pay cut to a salary of $27,500. Thompson, 28, signed with Texas and in his first game at' Arlington Stadium he collected four hits, including a home run. But after that debut, the season became a tedium of pain and bench warming. He finished with 70 hits for a .226 average. The homer in the opener was the only one he hit all season. But he nevertheless figured in the Rangers' plans for 1977. Friday, Thompson died in Rochester, Minn., of complications of the leukemia he had been fighting since 1973. He always thought he would win. The story of his illness was well known to baseball fans. "If you've got to have leukemia, this is xfi best type to have," Thompson often said. Thompson the Twins' regular shortstop until he was traded to Texas this year with pitcher Bert Blyleven. "I had no idea I was part of the trade until the last minute, but I didn't waste any time getting my bags packed," Thompson said. In 1974, Thompson won the Hutch Award, given annually to the game's most courageous player in memory of Fred Hutchinson, the late manager of the Cincinnati Reds. "I'm a lucky man," Thompson said. "I'm playing in the big leagues. I never thought of quitting baseball. This is my life. I love it." He collaborated with Minneapolis sports writer Bob Fowler on a book about his life and, according to his friends and teammates, always faced his illness openly. "Danny Thomson was not the most gifted player in major league baseball," O'Brien said. "He couldn't run as fast as some, he couldn't hit with the power of most and he couldn't throw as hard as many. But above all, he was the most complete human being I believe I've ever known. "He gave the Rangers something special this past season because he always gave of himself on or off the field." To have him as a friend was a Danny Thompson privilege. To have him as a teammate was an honor. He will be missed by our organization." Thompson's death stunned his former teammates, "I don't know what to say," Harmon Killebrew said in a barely audible voice. "I don't think people realized how serious Danny's illness was." Former Minnesota manager Frank Quilici, who was Thompson's boss for 3V8 years, said, "I was always amazed he kept his composure and did everything as well as he did with the knowledge he had something as tough as leukemia." Quilici said Thompson always wanted to be treated like any other player. "He always tried to downplay his illness and wanted people to judge him solely on his talents," Quilici said. Harmon Killebrew Revolutionary IM-DASIHI Kapstein's Refusal Clauses Provoke Contract Disputes 23 Channel CB Tranceiver with pushbutton AMFM Stereo Radio IrtaaSOStX Model CR-B1717 It II I h ) I I SWR CHANNEL METER MOMITOB I 1 -V' I if ..ST SELECTOR .. ' V SELECTOR ... L. I AMriVt nciri rtk. I r Jf Minrm net T A defend the contracts and informed the teams the players would honor the provisions. "We have told the players," Miller said, "that if they want to give the teams those rights at the time their contracts expire and they are negotiating, that's fine. But you can't do it contractually." Miller sees two aspects of the right-of-first-refusal that could adversely affect the players' status when their contracts expire. For one thing, he said, if other clubs know the Red Sox and Phillies can retain those players by matching any offers, no club will make a significant offer. For another, the players could be traded the no-trade provisions in the contracts don't last for the entire lives of the contracts and they could find themselves being retained by teams they really don't want to play for. Furthermore, Miller doesn't like the idea of a player or agent compromising rights provided in the basic agreement. "If we had proposed the right of first refusal in negotiations this year," he said, "the clubs would have given us whatever we wanted in benefits for the players." The case involves another significant aspect of the relations between the clubs and the Players Association. With the increasing number of lucrative, guaranteed, multi-year contracts being given players, clubs would like to have increased control over the potentially dangerous pursuits players follow in the off-season. The owners also would like to explore the entire area of special covenants. "We don't have a closed mind on anything," Miller, said, "but we're not going to get into it while they're approving these contracts and we have to go to arbitration. We have to have assurances that once we reach an agreement, they'll uphold it." ADJUSTABLE STEREO TUNER SHAFTS SELECTOR 'jjjj" SQUELCH CONTROL DETACHABLE MIKE Loaded With Quality features! Now you can listen to stereo and monitor CB calls on one in-dash unit that fits in most cars. High Fidelity Car Stereo Custom Installation Records & Tapes mmm RE, Open Monday-Friday 'til 9 PM, Saturday 'til 6 PM 2526 OKEECHOBEE BLVD. WEST PALM BEACH 689-5255 136 U.S. Hwy. 1 North Palm Beach 842-7268 819 U.S. Hwy. 1 STUART 746-7277 4 a a a a j t. nnncrNTV ri nn i By MURRAY CHASS (c) New York Times LOS ANGELES - Jerry Kapstein, whose earnings as the agent of most of baseball's quality free agents have approached $1 million, now stands at the center of a dispute involving questionable aspects of contracts he previously had negotiated. The dispute, which will be the subject of an arbitration hearing Jan. 11, deals with "right-of-first-refusal" clauses in the contracts of Garry Maddox of the Philadelphia Phillies and Fred Lvnn, Carlton Fisk and Hick Burleson of the Boston Red Sox. There is no chance that the entire contracts would be voided and the players would become free agents if the clauses are struck down by the three-man arbitration panel, but the decision, whichever way it goes, could have significant effects on future contracts of potential free agents. The league presidents, Charles i Chub) Feeney of the National and Lee MacPhail of the American, have approved the contracts, but the Players Association is contesting them. What makes the situation more intriguing than simply another player-club dispute is that Kapstein apparently has lined up on the clubs' side "I'd rather not comment on it," said Kapstein, who negotiated the tour deals during the 1976 season. The right-of-first-refusal concept is the basis of the future system in the National Basketball Association. I'nder that system, a. team will be able to retain a player who otherwise would be free to sign with anyone if it matches an offer made by another club. The concept, however, is not part of baseball's new basic agreement that allows for a player to become a tree agent after playing in the major leagues for six years. Nevertheless, the Red Sox have the right of first refusal oi Lynn, Fisk and Burleson, and the Phillies have that right with Maddox when their contracts expire. The clauses outlining those club rights were included in the special covenants section of the contracts. The Players Association sees those rights as limiting the players' rights as free agents. "The basic agreement," Marvin Miller, executive director of the Players Association, said, "sets minimum standards and says, in regard to special covenants, you are tree to negotiate any improvement you can as long as it provides additional benefits to the player. You can't take something away from the player. We don't have any doubt that we're going to correct this. They are open and shut cases." The clubs, of course, don't agree. They maintain that the special covenants must be considered in total. If 'as a collective entity, the covenants benefit the player, they argue, they all should be acceptable. "They're just taking one part of it," Dick O'Connell, Boston general manager, said. "We put that in as one of maybe 15 different things that the bargaining was based on." "It really isn't that big a thing," said Paul Owens, Philadelphia vice president. "We didn't put it in for any reason other than it was sort of standard procedure." There is nothing standard, however, about right-of-first-refusal because it never has been included in baseball contracts. Until this year, plavers' contracts bound them to their teams forever if the teams so chose. When the Players Association proposed the concept several years ago as a wav of altering the reserve system, the owners rejected it. Now it is creeping into the contract picture, legal or not. "When you get a player or a player's agent who insists he wants to enter into it, it's pretty hard to turn it down," MacPhail said. Although Kapstein wouldn't discuss the matter, it was learned that even after the Plavers Association challenged him on it, he continued to STEEL BELTED RADIALS felEA Vr .-' -!s3&q llll LOWEST PRICES illlaZS!L 'in,, Ki a m a KAASASa I EVER We will meet or beat any other Michelin Dealer's Prices .. . lr.n ...... . m w i. I INSTALLED J?. - Inspect wheel cylinders MAJOR BRAND 4 YAjT 1 Pwcho,. of Oil Chana. JWSm Check drums for safety X I nni vrrrrn rrrt t N lube. JJfP$ t vr- 9 Rood tett or brolte perfor- f m POLYESTER CORD j I uP s . 0ii 'sC mcue Srw""S BLACKWALLS I ft L fc f ft ft Stii S,H ,kM 1 ftftX. rJI WoyOrflOO MAJOR nkiei5 We can supply all your needs for pickups, vans and 4x4's. A78-13, Plus 1.81 F.E.T. SMOOTH RIDE DOUBLE BELTED 2 2 WI1ITEWALL GLASS BEL" MAJOR BRAND - 4 PLY POLYESTER CORD 071-14 (I2S.14).. M7I-14 (135.14) .. J7I-I4 (H3.I4).. I SIZE SALE SIZE , SALE C78-13 21.99 H78-14 27.99 C78-14 22.99 G78-15 28.99 E78-14 24.99 H78-1S 28.99 F78-14 25.89 178-15 29.99 G78-14 28.99 II SIZE A7I-U 6O0.13 .. 11-13 (410.13) ... C7I-13 (70O13... C7I-I4 (65.14... A -78-13 22.99 23.99 26.99 20.99 22.99 23.99 26.99 27.99 SALE 15.99 16.99 17.99 18.99 19.99 20.99 21.99 mm SPECIAL PURCHASE Goodyear, Uniroyal B.F. Goodrich & General 1st Quality Dual Steel Belted Radials 50-1$ 071-11 1123.15).. H7I-15 (133.13) . J7I-15 (113.15) . i.71-1 3 (1515).. HEAVY DUJY TRUCK ALIGNMENT t BALANCE AVAIL 071-14 171-14 (735.14) F7I-14 (77S14).. 95 GR-78-15 HR-78-14 LIMITED QUANTITIES PRICES PIUS PI T. of 1.S1 14,3.13 Whiri wall ... add $2.00 Whit wall Price trow

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