"I used to read the papers and think about Crandall and Spahn and all those names. Then one day you get up here. I walked around the locker room and looked at the names—Crandall, Mathews, Spahn, Aaron. You just hear about them," said Torre. "Then just like that I saw ' Joe Torre' above a locker. Right near Spahn's, too.
"You know what," the rookie catcher said. "They're just guys. Just like the guys you play with on any team. Just as friendly, just as nice." After a pause, he smiled. "Yeah, just as nice, but better ballplayers."
After 10 years at Cincinnati, Roy McMillan was traded to the Milwaukee Braves last winter.
"No baseball player likes to be traded," he said this spring. "It's the toughest thing in the game. It's worse than a bad year. You get used to the fellows on the ball club and the town and the way of doing things.
"But I've been around in baseball long enough, so I wasn't surprised. I knew I was going to be traded. When you hear so many rumors it's not just a lot of general manager's talk. I knew it, but I hoped it wouldn't happen.
"I'll tell you something," McMillan said earnestly, "I didn't like being traded but I'm glad I'm with a club that has a chance to win it. Third place is the highest we ever finished in Cincinnati. I sure wouldn't mind playing in a World Series this year."
"The Pirates won," Charley Dressen said, "because they had a lot of guys who were willing to work hard. If we want to win, we have to work just a little harder.
"That's the trouble with baseball players today," the manager of the Braves continued. "Everybody wants to take it easy. It's not just the ballplayers. It's everybody. Just the other day I picked up a couple of kids who wanted a lift to get to the tennis courts. The courts were two blocks away. Can you imagine that? Two blocks away and those kids wouldn't walk."
Dressen laughed. "We pay big bonuses to these kids and then they come to camp figuring all they have to do is show up. Some kids think all you have to do is eat vitamins and you bang 'em off the wall. But baseball's a tough game.
"The Pirates are a good ball club. The Cards are improved. The Dodgers have all those good kids. We gotta work hard," he said. "We gotta work hard."