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McGregor's first pitch after the delay was a fastball, and Garry Maddox sent it sailing through the wind into the leftfield seats. "I'm not going to make an excuse," said McGregor. "I threw the pitch I wanted to throw." However, the scouting reports should have told him that Maddox always looks for a fastball on the first pitch. It was only his fifth homer of the year and first game-winning RBI.
Denny left the game after Al Bumbry doubled with two out in the eighth, and Holland came on to get Ford to hit a fly ball to left. Holland throws almost nothing but fastballs, although he delivers three different kinds, depending on the way he grips the ball: rising, sinking and sailing. In the ninth he made Ripken pop up to short, struck out Murray and allowed Gary Roenicke to hit a deep fly ball to left that Gary Matthews caught for the last out of the game.
"I hope the President remembers my name," said Holland, whose exuberance has made him a popular man with the media. When told that the President had left before he came on, Holland said, "That's O.K. He's got his job to do, and I've got mine."
The pitching on both sides was so good that not one walk was issued—only the fifth time that has happened in a Series. Denny, the winner, said, "I've grown up a lot in the last year." He certainly has matured as a pitcher (19-6 with a 2.37 ERA during the season). It has also been interesting to see him grow as a person in the last few weeks. A born-again Christian, Denny invited his father, Dick, who is legally blind, to fly in from Australia to attend the Series. Denny and his father were estranged when the pitcher was a youth. And there's more. Once very antagonistic toward journalists, he now gives freely of himself, citing chapter and verse. The epistle-packing Denny says he decided to talk because of Philippians 2:3-8. You can look it up, as Casey used to say.
Oriole fans looked as dreary as the weather as they filed out of Memorial Stadium. It was the first time in six World Series that the O's had lost the first game. But at least they could take heart from a line in that infernal song of Denver's: "Life ain't nothin' but a funny, funny riddle."
The next night the Orioles' fans could have been singing, "Thank God for a country boy." As he had in the American League playoffs against Chicago, rookie Mike Boddicker, of Norway, Iowa (pop. 633), pulled Baltimore even with a wonderful pitching performance. Boddicker bedazzled the Phillies in the O's 4-1 victory, allowing only three hits, no walks and no earned runs while striking out six. He was just as impressive as he had been the week before when he beat the White Sox on a five-hit, 14-strikeout shutout. That victory also had followed an opening game loss.
"This was a masterpiece as far as I'm concerned," said Claude Osteen, the Phillies' pitching coach. "He's got three speeds for each pitch, and that's a total of 12 pitches. He reminds me of Stu Miller."
"I thought Stu Miller was running a liquor store on the Coast these days," said Phillie Coach Dave Bristol.
"Do you think that kid was a pitcher tonight?" asked the Orioles' chief scout, Jim Russo. "Hell, no. That was Michelangelo with a baseball."
The Orioles had other people to thank in Game 2, most notably Brother Low, Lowenstein; the bottom of the batting order, which is now known as The Three Stooges; and Pat Santarone's ground crew, which kept the field playable despite 24 hours of drizzle.