The pitching is good news and bad news. John Smiley (12-8, 2.81) and Doug Drabek (14-12, 2.80) make a good lefty-righty combination, but after that the Pirates have Bob Walk (13-10, 4.41), Neal Heaton (6-7, 3.05) and Terrell (11-18, 4.49). The Pirates' closer is Bill Landrum. who came out of nowhere—sorry, Buffalo—to save 26 games for the Bucs last year. But the bullpen has very little depth. How little? Well, if you scan the Pirates' Opening Day roster, you will find the answer to the trivia question. Whatever happened to Doug Bair?
5. PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES
This is a much different team from the one that left Clearwater a year ago. Owner Bill Giles says he will be disappointed if the Phillies don't finish at .500, and although that's asking a lot, keep in mind that they were only eight games under .500 after June 20. If the Phillies are somehow in the hunt as the division race turns for home, look out.
That said, the future is, well, Hayes-y. The Phils have Von Hayes (26 homers, 28 stolen bases) in right, but he is their most marketable commodity, and if he can bring the Phillies a frontline starting pitcher and a regular, he's gone. They also have Charlie Hayes at third, which doesn't thrill people accustomed to Mike Schmidt. As manager Nick Leyva pointed out before the shortened spring training, "This may benefit Charlie. He won't have time to lose his job."
The Phillie catchers—Darren Daulton, Steve Lake and Tom Nieto—combined for a dismal .211 average last year, with 10 homers and 58 RBIs, but the rest of the lineup is solid. In fact, centerfielder Lenny Dykstra is as solid as a rock after a conditioning program that left him looking, in one teammate's words, like "Lenny Canseco."
Unfortunately, the Phillies' pitching staff is not as strong. The number 1 starter, Ken Howell (12-12, 3.44), had only four major league starts before last year; the number 2 starter, Pat Combs, has six major league appearances; and the number 3 starter. Bruce Ruffin, had to go to the minors last year to battle back from Steve Blass Disease. Howell isn't exactly a master of control, either. He had 21 wild pitches last year, the most by any National League pitcher since Tony Cloninger threw 27 away in 1966. But you have to like Howell's attitude. He said this spring that he had his sights set on the National League record of 30, set by Red Ames in 1905.
If the Phillies go into the late innings with a lead, they won't have to worry. Jeff Parrett (12-6, 2.98) may be the best setup man in baseball, and Roger McDowell had 19 saves and a 1.11 ERA after moving over from the Mets last June. The Phillies had better go into the ninth inning ahead, though; they haven't won a home game in which they trailed in their last at bat since 1987.
6. MONTREAL EXPOS
Gone from a team that finished .500 last year are rightfielder Hubie Brooks and pitchers Bryn Smith. Pascual Perez and Mark Langston, all of whom opted for more money Stateside. The one premier pitcher who remained, Dennis Martinez, is unhappy with his contract and threatened his own personal "lockout" this spring. Third baseman Tim Wallach, a four-time All-Star, is also making noises about leaving. And club owner Charles Bronfman informed reporters in West Palm Beach, Fla., that les Expos were on the block.
For sale: baseball team with tricolored uniforms and history of unfulfilled expectations; a few stars left; outstanding farm system; unappealing stadium not included; $90 million U.S.