No, to me that's very easy. Baseball gets to be a tough job only because it's so constant. Baseball is tough. Physically there are times you're just dead. But being physically tired isn't that big an agony. And if you've won, tired is a great feeling, and you know you're going to wake up stiff but you also know you're going to get a good night's sleep. Baseball soreness isn't a bad kind of soreness. Sometimes in the winter I feel that I miss it. About the first week in February I start getting anxious to play again.
Sandy, you're just turning 30 now and pretty soon you'll be reaching the stage where a pitcher loses some of his power and starts looking for other pitches. Do you have any in mind?
Well, I already have a fork ball, but it's not really another pitch. I use it instead of a change of pace. If I have a good fast ball and a good curve ball I hesitate to use anything else. But if they're not getting me by, I try to use anything I can, including the fork ball.
What about sliders, knucklers?
I don't know if I can throw any other pitches. I used to try the slider once in a while, and some other pitches, but since I had this little problem with my elbow it seems like only my old standby pitches don't bother me. All the new stuff, like the slider or the others I used to try, it seems like they all hurt my arm.
That old sidearm pitch of yours didn't help your bad elbow, did it?
No. That's what first bothered me, and I've given up the sidearm delivery completely. I never used it much anyway, and it wasn't very important to me. But my elbow trouble isn't something that came from just a few pitches. It happened over a period of 10, 11, 12 years. It may even have started when I fell on a basketball court in high school.
I understand you don't like to discuss your physical ailments anymore. Why?
Enough has been said. The finger thing—Raynaud's Phenomenon—was in 1962. That's almost four years ago now. It hasn't bothered me since, and even that little hard spot under the skin is gone. Everything's gone. As far as I'm concerned, it's forgotten, except that it cost me half a year in baseball.
Do you get unsolicited advice on how to cure your arthritis?