Hutchinson turned his glass, spilled another piece of ice in his mouth and cracked down hard with his teeth. Then he talked again: "The big guy with us is Dark. He's making a winner out of Blasingame. You don't see those things from the stands, but every day I see Blasingame get better because Dark is showing him how to win. Musial you don't have to manage. What can a manager do for him?
"The pitching—maybe I could take credit for that. That thing with Mizell in Brooklyn, I just wanted to get him over a hump. Sometimes that's all it takes—a man gets over a rough time and he goes on from there." Hutchinson gave a short laugh. "Guys ask me about Von McDaniel. What did I do for him? I just put him in there and he came through. Could I take credit for that?
"I try to make a ballplayer believe in himself, and the only way you can do that is to give him a chance. If he plays his way out of the lineup, then you try somebody else. And if you haven't got 'em, you're dead. I seldom read the newspapers. If we won, I know how. If we lost, reading about it won't get the game back."
A man and woman stopped by the table and spoke to Hutchinson about the Cardinals. They wished him luck and went away. "People like that are the ones I like," he said. "They didn't ask for anything, or tell me how to run things. There are thousands like that." There was one piece of ice left in the glass and Hutchinson put it in his mouth. He cracked it, then spoke again.
"You know, I didn't always agree with Harry Truman," he said. "But when they were firing at him, you never saw him pull back. The little man from Missouri never pulled his foot in the bucket. They wrote him off in 1948, and he was the only one who believed in himself. He went out among the people and scratched for it. He didn't flinch or run to hide. He knew how to win."
There was a long period of silence. Hutchinson scowled into his empty glass. The light strains of the French melody, La Seine, came through on the piped-in music, disturbed slightly by a rattle of glasses, making the scene of the realistic, intense man, speaking out his thoughts, seem incongruous.
"We haven't got the best club," he was saying, "but they believe in themselves. They go out every day and grind. Baseball doesn't have many naturals, a lot less than you might imagine.
"The ones who work hardest are the ones who make it, the ones who win. Sometimes that's the only difference. If you don't work hard at this game, you might as well hang them up. Sweat is your only salvation."