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HE ALSO SERVES WHO SITS AND WAITS
Ron Fimrite
August 12, 1974
But baseball's best reliever—and most reluctant hero—seldom waits for long. Mike Marshall is busily working on his doctorate and a pennant for the Dodgers
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August 12, 1974

He Also Serves Who Sits And Waits

But baseball's best reliever—and most reluctant hero—seldom waits for long. Mike Marshall is busily working on his doctorate and a pennant for the Dodgers

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He could not think of it. Maybe it was: "They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." Anyway, Marshall was off and running, looking strangely like a small boy at play.

That night he would jog in from the bullpen, carefully tamp down the mound, rescue Downing and, as a true team player, help achieve victory with his bat. Afterward, he would dress quickly, steer clear of journalists imposing on his privacy and retreat out of sight.

Marshall has a wife and three daughters, but he refuses to discuss anything so private as family life. He is equally reluctant to reveal what plans he might have after he achieves his doctorate. He has said before that he is fully prepared to abandon the ball park for the groves of academe, although he cannot expect an educational institution, even one as affluent as Michigan State, to reward him with a salary comparable to the $87,500 the Dodgers reportedly pay him. The inordinate amounts paid big leaguers is merely an added incongruity in the life of an intellectual who plays a child's game so well that he keeps winning, even while deploring the concept of victory.

Messersmith, also a speedy dresser, was happy with the victory that kept the Dodgers 5½ games ahead of the Reds, their opponents in a key three-game series this week. "I know what Mike says about winning, and how performance is all that really matters," he said. "But there's one thing: his kind of performance leads to winning."

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