Chicago Tribune from Chicago, Illinois on September 4, 1974 · 51
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Chicago Tribune from Chicago, Illinois · 51

Chicago, Illinois
Issue Date:
Wednesday, September 4, 1974
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Chicago Tribune, Wednesday, September 4, 1974 .Sections 3 In the wake I I of the news 6 By David Condon iLjjl. Taylor Spink was man for all seasons, hours Chicago Tribunt Pmi Strvkt . v' NEW YORK, Sept 3-J. G. Taylor Spink served notice , when he took his son into the Spinks' Sporting News shop: "Johnson, in the newspaper business you'll work long hours until you're 40." C. C. Johnson Spink asked what happened at 40. "By then you'll be used to it," said Taylor Spink, who worked practically round-the-clock seven days a week. , Years afterwards, Johnson's physician advised him to relax on Sundays. "Your doctor's a quack," snorted Taylor. IF YOU'RE a sport fan, you've probably felt the influence of Taylor Spink, tho he's dead almost 14 years. - Taylor's Sporting News still is baseball's bible and has veered into other sports. They say that without The Sporting News, sports would be like show biz without Variety. v One newspaperman likened Taylor Spink to Moses toting baseball's Ten Commandments. Judge Kenesaw Mountain Landis, as fiery commissioner of baseball, lamented: "Why did God ever create a S.O.B. like Spink?" What a man! Now friends have contributed memoirs to permit the son, Johnson Spink, to print a private edition entitled "Taylor Spink The Legend and The Man." What a legend! . , A LUSTY "0 Solo Mio" troubador was keeping Taylor awake in Rome. Taylor seized a sheik-sized bath mat, sopped it in the tub until it weighed a ton, then flung it from his balcony and flattened the soloist. ' A department store near Taylor's St. Louis office began, blaring "Silent Night" over its outside amplifiers the day after Thanksgiving. Spink's protests were ignored: So Taylor stationed a 20-piece brass band at the store to ' repetitiously toot "Take Me Out To The Ball Game." The store quickly surrendered. How about Spink being refused admission to the "Gone With The Wind" premiere because no one was to be seated with the film in progress? Taylor belly-ached until the theater owner offered to slip him in a side door. "Hell no," roared Taylor, sauntering down the middle aisle. WHEN A CONFLICT of interest forced one writer 'to decline a Spink assignment, Taylor sent a $100 check to the author's small son. Still the writer refused. "You mean you're going to take that money out of your own kid's pocket?" snarled Spink, incredulously. Spink made a long anticipated trip to Japan, turned around immediately, but left the return plane in Hawaii. Within three hours he had checked out of a Honolulu hotel and boarded another plane. The pause? To shower and telephone St. Louis for the day's World Series score. A SPINK BRAINSTORM sent him flying to Los Angeles to surprise Dodger Owner Walter O'Malley. Taylor cabbed to O'Malley's office, which was closed for the weekend. Spink re-boarded the taxi and said: "Lake Arrowhead." They drove 75 miles to discover that O'Malley wasn't at his vacation retreat, either. , Cabbing back to L.A., Spink phoned a contact: ' "What's the matter with that O'Malley-doesn't he ever stay put?" . TAYLOR LOVED fun, and foils. Spotting Branch Rickey hanging up a new hat in a restaurant, Spink sped, to have Rickey's hat duplicated in two sizes: One a half-size smaller, the other a half larger. Back at the restaurant he replaced Rickey's fedora with the too-small hat. Rickey was befuddled striving to make it fit. later in the day, Rickey hung up the too-small hat. Spink replaced it with the too-large hat. When last seen, Rickey's hat was down his ears' and he was bemoaning the shrinking of his head. TAYLOR WAS A brilliant newshound. The long distance telephone was his nose, and he delighted in awakening writers in the wee hours. He could track down any man, any time, anywhere. A writer attending a secret baseball meeting answered a pay phone. It was Spink, calling him. Ducking Spink's calls from St. Louis, a writer sneaked into a most obscure New York restaurant Yet within minutes the manager beckoned: "Mr. Spink on the phone." As mysteriously, Spink paid for the writer's dinner. Cabbing to Brooklyn, Taylor noted that his driver was "Tommy Holmes." He asked: "You Tommy Holmes, the old baseball writer?" The cabbie said: "No, but some crazy S.O.B. in St. Louis thinks I am and keeps telephoning me at 3 ' o'clock in the morning." 1 A WRITER'S WIFE was telling their daughter about the birds and bees. "When does it happen? asked the tot. Generally at night, said mom. "What if the phone rings?" asked the girl. The mother said: "You don't answer." "Suppose it's Taylor Spink?" asked the daughter. The mother signed: "A call from Mr. Spink takes precedence over anything." Today's ovonts On television t:N . in. WON lASIBALLt NW Ttfl Mm Vt. CUBS. BASBBALL Uut VA Ua mA Uf-I.l... . vvbi i nninr .m , m wtMt fill ftAttft At I . Fill, Clark IN AMiNS lit., KM I. m. WHlVioxvT kJi Cltf Vwll. " THOROBRBD KACINO At Arliniton Pirt, Artlmton Hflihts, liJO . m. HARNESS RACINO At Spwtimin't Pirt, Clcin in Liriml t 1M; Sill . M. WOODY'S WORLD On radio 1:M . M. WON 7101 BASRBALLl Ntw York Mill v. CUBS. 1:Y . m, WMAO 14701 BASRBALLl WHITB SOX n. Kmmi City Royili. . ww " ' t Tanner's CHUCK TANNER made it official the other day. The White Sox are playing for second place. It had been the suspicion of many of us last April that the Sox would be playing all season for second place and would be lucky to finish that high. But it is the prerogative of a manager to have his dreams in the spring and there was, of course, some substance to Tanner's. The Sox were laden with power and their defense up the middle, where it is supposed to matter most, appeared better than adequate. , ' And so, on the whole, it turned out to be. The Sox certainly expected more power from Ron Santo and possibly a bit more from Bill Melton. They nevertheless lead the majors in optimism stUng Robert "3 Markus I 1 bwmality home runs. They've received good to excellent defensive play from Center Fielder Ken Henderson, Shortstop Bucky Dent and Catcher Ed Hermann. GIL THORPv -v I Wait! Here' Have these He looked so pathetic f Daren- 1 FT If you wanted to try W On.Jdidn't m papers signed by one of y I Thanks, I didn't havstne heart II McBride!J 0 out for the football realize that...I Jp your flarents arid this Vl Coach! J to turn Jlim downflVB fj? "The chess 4 team you should have T thought Id have medical report signed by p v. never seen him before.' u champion or 1 .y hd W. T. T. girds for expensive encore By Steve Nidetz WORLD TEAM Tennis owners, apparently thinking their product will see the light of another season, last week pledged $1.6 million to assure what W. T. T. commissioner George 'MacCall says is financial stability. The league held three days of meetings in New York which led MacCall afterwards to state: "All the owners are firmly convinced that W. T. T. will become a viable profitable enterprise." All these glowing assurances, coupled with former President Jo r don Kaiser's forecast a couple of weeks earlier about the great future of W. T. T., only lead one to wonder what they have been smoking. For World Team Tennis this year has not only been a joke, but a sick joke at that. For the most part, it was too Tennis long,, too confusing, and too boring. BY THE TIME the second half of the season started, most of the players were tired and became more so when they had to make the kmg Hawaii trip. Only those teams contending for a playoff spot enjoyed those last weeks. The rules kept changing, and so did the players. Many signings were promised at the Wimbledon break, but few appeared. 1 All in all, few would have been better fewer matches, fewer teams, and fewer losing franchises. A smaller league, say about eight teams, playing two matches a week would have whetted the public's appetite. Instead it was force-fed from the beginning. TRIM'S ARENA A SMALLER league, also would have meant a more equal distribution of the limited talent available. And a better balanced league would have brought more fans to fill those empty seats. MacCall also announced that an owners' committee had been formed to discuss with the W. T. T. PJayers Committee any changes in the league rules and playing format. ' That's an encouraging sign. The players have some interesting ideas about next year, about the format, and about the constant battle with the Association of T e n n i s Professionals, which many of the men players belong to. Everybody laughed at World Team Tennis. And they had a right to. Now let's see what happens next year. HIGH LOBS - A tennis workshop for all Chicago Public League coaches of girls and boys varsity tennis teams will be held Sept. 12 "WeH get this doubleheader over in no time." Evel lurks in bar, the tab is real Butte Continued from page one conservationist governor is a "gutless wonder" for not issuing a statement supporting his jump. Evel apparently is tickled because the Montana governor said he planned to attend the jump, but there has been no word from Idaho's man. In fact, Gov. Cecil P. Andrus apparently is planning to come here Thursday for the county fair and then head right back to Boise. "Why, all he'd say is that maybe I'd give a boost to the economy," Evel fumed. "I tell you, I'll boost the economy more than anything this state's ever had. I tell you, that's a two-bit, chicken-bleep governor who's offered me no help, The only- ones with guts enough to issue a statement were the lieutenant governor' and the attorney general Why, that governor's not worth a damn. Why, they ought to throw him across the canyon just to test the wind." There was a deep silence in the bar. Cocktail waitresses, in the process of plunking down 10 bottles of beer per table, were sudden tableaus. Knlevel's attorney sat there holding his head. Even Riggs, tho his mouth stayed open, was quiet. Arum finally cleared his throat. "Let's just say the governor is a Democrat," he weakly croaked. "And we support all Democrats," Evel shrugged and signaled for another round. ' THE OL' GAS BAG Yes, Rlggs stayed thruout, Anally conniving a way to steal Into the action. Earlier, pt the .launching site, Bobby's face dropped In awe at what certainly must surpass his own "ultimate hustle." There was the launching ramp, a rifle aimed across the yawning black canyon. Already, hundreds of campers were nestling around the site. "I dunno," he stammered. "When I see this isn't it fantastic?" But later he got Knievel, still in his gubernatorial rage, to allege that frail old Bobby might not handle himself well on a cycle. Riggs snapped at the challenge and soon they were sealing a $25,000 bet that Riggs could not ride here from Las Vegas on a mini-bike by Sunday. . "THERE AIN'T NOTHING I can't do," Rlggs shrieked, sealing the bet on a piece of scrap paper and swigging another beer. He and his party promptly headed for the air port and a lift on Knlevel's plane to Vegas. "I said, 'Out.' Yon promised to be quiet!" Phils' Hurler, Rlchert nurses arm ailment PHILADELPHIA, Sept. S tAP -Philadelphia Phillies' relief pitcher Pete Richert will remain hospitalized for about a week for treatment of thrombosis of his pitching arm, the National League club said today, at Chicago State University, 99th and King Drive . . . Contact Richard M. Fee, bureau coordinator of health, physical education, and safety for the Chicago Board of Education. A four-step, $22,400 women's fall satellite circuit has been announced by Mrs. Edy McGoldrick, director of women's tennis for the U. S. Lawn Tennis association. ... The first stop will be Rio del Oro Raquet Club, Sacramento, Cal, starting Monday. Gerald Dutch Gossett, assistant swimming coach at Eastern Illinois University, has been named head tennis coach, succeeding Rex Darling, who retired . . . Mina Jausovec, Yugoslavia, is the top seed in the girls singles of the Pepsi-Cola Junior International, which starts today at Forest Hills . . . Southern Colorado State, Pueblo, Colo., will be the site of the N. C. A. A. Division II tennis tournament June 10-14, it was announced last week. ' But if the Sox have been strong where they figured to be strong, they've been weak where they figured to be weak. Namely, pitching and overall defense. The pitching has been even worse than I figured it to be, ' because the bullpen, which figured to be strong with Terry Forster and Cy Acosta, did not come thru. Acosta was hurt most of the season and Forster was in and out. THE LESSON to be learned from this year's White Sox collapse what else can you call it when a team with pennant dreams fails to play .500 ball? is that power pleases the fans, but pitching and defense win pennants. The Sox don't have those ingredients now and they won't have them next year. Not unless they undergo some drastic changes. Despite the ministrations 5f Johnny Sain, supposedly the top pitching doctor in the game, the Sox starting staff is a shambles. Perhaps the reason is that the Sox do not have the typf of pitchers with whom Sain has always had the most success. Some of the younger .ones, like Bart Johnson, have openly questioned his ability to help them. Which may make sense since Sain's best work has been done with older pitchers. Witness Jim Kaat's generally creditable performance this year. Kaat, of course, worked with. Sain earlier in Minnesota and swears by him. K Another who thinks Sain is the greatest is Mudcat Grant, Kaat's teammate on the Twins' pennant winners back in 1965. Earl Wilson, who blossomed under Sain's care in Detroit, Is another. These pitchers have some things in common. Mainly, they all had good fastballs and when Sain taught them the art of throwing a breaking ball they became winners. It seems to me then that a pitcher must have two things for Sain to be able to help a major league fastball and the maturity to know that the fastball is not enough. In any event, the Sox need starting pitchers, and the only way they're going to get them is thru trades. BUT WHO are they to trade? The key figure here Is Dick Allen, who can't be traded because he'd most likely quit? first. But Allen has dropped hints that he might quit anyway. Until Chuck Tanner can divine his first baseman's intentions; he can make no decisions about Tony Muser. Muser would be the ideal candidate to replace Allen at first. He would tighten up the defense and he gives every indication of being a big league hitter. But he is no Dick Allen, and if Allen choses to play, Muser could be traded. Another possibility is Bill Melton, more because Bill would welcome the change than for any other reason. Melton would love to play in his native California. Would the Angels listen to a Melton for Nolan Ryan trade, with perhaps Muser and a lesser Angel player involved? I don't know, but an Angel official says: "Muser is the type pf hitter who could help us in our park. He hits those line drives." If Melton were traded, the Sox might have to gamble that Ron Santo could come back next year. Or they might put Brian Downing at third. Or they might solve two problems by moving Jorge Orta there. I can't claim credit for that idea-it was fed me by a scouWmt I like it. Orta is a fine hitter but has trouble with the double play. Third might be his natural position. - ' Of course, I don't think one pitcher, not even Nolan Ryan, is going to make the Sox a pennant winner next year. They also need better outfield defense and a return to form of Forster in the bullpen. 1 But maybe I am too pessimistic. Certainly the Sox are not as good as Chuck Tanner thought they were in the spring.. And maybe they are not as bad as I think they are in the fall. Wieboldts MOST AUTO C1M1UU OFBf LUTE WEEKDAY MIORTS Auto Centers open 8:30 A.M. daily BBBHrSSBBBBBBBBBBBWBBBBB msim Hollo AUTO CENTERS 2 strong fiberglass cord bolts, plus a 2-ply polyester cord body for smooth rido and long wear plui F.E.T. 2.33-2.74 sixes E78-14 G78-14 F78-14 G78-15 F78-15 PLUS You Get U Green Stamps 4-ply nylon Dotroitor Super tiros -"M I . 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