The real Comeback of the Year player started the season as a full-time stockbroker and a part-time scout for the Brewers. He didn't throw a pitch in the major leagues until last Wednesday when he pitched one-third of an inning against the Red Sox. Paul Hartzell, who is 27-38 lifetime, had last pitched in the majors in 1981, when he hurt his arm and retired. He thought.
When the stockbroking business took him to Phoenix this spring, Hartzell visited the Brewers' minor league camp in Peoria, Ariz. "I was standing around," he says. "I guess I looked bored." Somebody suggested he throw BR "A couple of guys said, 'Your ball's really moving.' I said, 'So what?' "
So Hartzell ended up pitching for the Brewers' Class A Stockton team on a five-game trial. He went home after going 0-1, but a month later the Brewers called and asked if he wanted to go to El Paso in Class AA.
Off he went. He was 2-2 with a 1.37 ERA there and then 5-1 with a 2.91 ERA at Vancouver (AAA). And when the Brewers expanded their roster Sept. 1, the Comeback Kid was back.
Bruce Sutter, who set a National League save record last week, very politely declines to discuss his impending free agency. Of course, his numbers—40 saves and a 1.37 ERA—do a lot of talking.
So where will Sutter go for his millions? Well, St. Louis is still a possibility, even though Sutter will almost certainly enter the free-agent draft in November. You can be sure the Blue Jays, who could be the best team in baseball with a stopper, will go after Sutter as furiously as they did Goose Gossage last year. But a little birdie says that Sutter, like many players, wouldn't be comfortable playing and living in a different country.
Our little birdie also says Sutter would look favorably on Philadelphia or Baltimore because they're closest to his Lancaster, Pa. home. The Phils are the more likely to be interested because the O's need hitting and will chase Indian DH Andre Thornton.
Other possibilities? The Angels, who always need a stopper, and the White Sox. The Yankees? George Steinbrenner could decide to pursue Sutter and return Dave Righetti to the rotation, but New York just isn't Sutter's kind of town. It doesn't suit his low-key lifestyle.
In 1983 the White Sox went 99-63 and won the American League West by a record-setting 20 games. In 1984 they've been the biggest disappointment in baseball, even if they do have a slight chance to repeat.
"After what we did last year, a lot of guys are having a hard time believing we're still in the middle of a pennant race," says catcher Carlton Fisk. He believes the Sox can still win if they forget their record (65-76) and pay attention to the standings ( Chicago is seven back with 20 games to play).