SI Vault
Edited by Robert W. Creamer
September 13, 1971
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September 13, 1971


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Phil Wrigley's decision to run an ad in Chicago newspapers last week in support of Leo Durocher excited tremendous comment, including end-of-the-world front-page headlines. In the ad (he wrote it in longhand and his wife typed it, supposedly because she is the only one who can decipher his handwriting), Wrigley pointed out that the Cubs had been perennial failures before Leo took over, whereas under Durocher they have been one of the best teams in the league. He ended by saying, "Leo is the manager and the 'Dump Durocher Clique' might as well give up. He is running the team, and if some of the players do not like it...we will see what we can do to find them happier homes."

Player response was mixed ( Fergie Jenkins said it was all "a bunch of junk" while Ernie Banks called it appropriate), and afterward, Wrigley was asked precisely why he had published the ad.

"Because I've found that you can't run things with a lame duck in charge."

Did that mean Leo would be the manager again next season?

"Not necessarily. I have the whole winter to think about that, and if a change is to be made it will be made when I have time to think about it."

Did he expect the Chicago press, which had been filled with stories of dissension and anti-Durocher feeling on the ball club, to drop the matter now?

Wrigley laughed. "Not at all. You know the press isn't like that."

In that case, what effect did he want the ad to have?

"I just wanted to let the team know who they should he taking orders from."

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