Quotes and notes about the Phillies' 1983 season

ASSOCIATED PRESS Garry Maddox hits home run off Orioles' Scott McGregor in eighth inning of Game 1 of 1983 World Series.
ASSOCIATED PRESS Garry Maddox hits home run off Orioles' Scott McGregor in eighth inning of Game 1 of 1983 World Series.
Posted: June 25, 2013

THE 1983 Phillies made it to the World Series almost in spite of themselves. There was enough bickering and backbiting to make three MTV reality shows.

The players were frustrated by the uncertainty of their roles. Stars felt disrespected and openly questioned the sanity of management, namely president Bill Giles and general manager/manager Paul Owens. Giles and Owens mostly shrugged, and the Phillies just kept winning.

Here is a look at some of the saltier verbal nukes tossed around Veterans Stadium during that wildly perplexing season:

* "I think it was the result of inexperience," said ex-manager Pat Corrales, who was fired in midseason with a 43-42 record that still was enough for first place. "I think [Bill Giles] panicked. He's still green at this and doesn't realize you don't win championships in half a year."

* "I know what my problem is," Mike Schmidt said. "I'm too self-aware. I admit it. I might be too worried about everything."

* "It happened to work," Schmidt said of general manager Paul Owens' replacing Corrales. "The individual players grumbled, but they had too much pride to lay down. But the way this was managed, anyone could have done it."

* "Mike should just do his job and not psychoanalyze everyone else," Owens responded. "He's insecure, so he thinks everyone else is."

* "The strikeouts this year and the whole situation have been like a cloud hanging over me," Schmidt said. "I've thought about quitting eight or 10 times this year. In a normal year, that happens once or twice."

* "After he strikes out," Len Matuszek explained, "we'll all be sitting in the dugout with our minds in the game and all of the sudden Mike will say something like 'I know that was a fastball and he threw it. How did I miss it? How did he throw a fastball in that spot, right there, and how did I miss it?' We all look at him and wonder what's going on in his mind. It seems, that with all he has achieved, he hasn't learned to take an 0-for-4 like most guys."

* "Wine has some wimp in him," Owens said, shortly after the team fired longtime bench coach Bobby Wine at the end of the season.

* "If we had finished fourth, I could see them saying they were going to clean house," Wine said. "But we won the pennant and would have won the World Series if a couple guys hit like we thought they would. I think they were gonna do this to me even if we had won the World Series."

* "There's only one or two guys who come to the ballpark every day and know they're going to be in there. It doesn't bother me. I'm one of those guys," Schmidt said in early September when the Phillies were in third place. "If you're not one of those guys, it can be demoralizing. Look around, you've gotta be blind not to see what platooning has done."

* "I understand all the rumblings, and I understand that the club might have to make a move," Joe Morgan said after being informed the Phillies might bench him for rookie Juan Samuel. "But what disturbs me is that it wasn't said to me. Make your decision, fine. But tell me, don't make me hear about it indirectly."

* "We were in first place, but that atmosphere on the ballclub was like [we were in last]," reliever Larry Andersen said. "No one was having fun. No one had much enthusiasm coming to the park every day. I wondered what the heck was going on."

* "There were razor blade stares and furtive whispers, players sulking and management grumbling," wrote Daily News sports writer Ray Didinger. " 'How To Succeed in Baseball Without Really Smiling,' that was the theme of the Phillies centennial season."

Did you know? * 

May 1 was the 100th anniversary of the first game in Phillies history. The Phils beat Houston, 11-3.

* Steve Carlton won his 300th career game on Sept. 23 when he beat the Cardinals, the team that traded Lefty to the Phillies in the winter of 1972.

* Joe Morgan celebrated his 40th birthday by belting two home runs in a 7-6 win over the Cubs on Sept. 19. Morgan hit .337 with 18 RBI in September.

* The Phils went 22-7 in September, which included an 11-game winning streak.

* Len Matuszek, one of the heroes of the September run, was not on the postseason roster because he was added to the roster on Sept. 1. Tug McGraw was left off the postseason roster because of ineffectiveness.

* Joe Carter, then with the Cubs, singled on Aug. 1 for his first major league hit.

* More spooky foreshadowing: One of Eddie Murray's two homers in Game 5 of the World Series hit the Veterans Stadium scoreboard. The board was listing AL RBI leaders, and Murray's line-drive homer hit the name of Detroit's Lance Parrish.

* The Phillies went 1-11 against the Dodgers in the regular season, but beat the Dodgers three out of four in the NLCS.

* Mike Schmidt went 1-for-20 in the World Series against Baltimore, which was dubbed the "I-95 Series." The Phillies marked the occasion by hitting .195 as a team.

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