My Way

(Dallas Green, manager of the 1980 World Champion Phillies, is the 2006 inductee into the Phillies Wall of Fame. The following story appeared in the League Championship Series Program and World Series Program in ’80.  Some of you may have read it.  Others weren’t born 26 years ago.  I thought it was worthy of re-printing).

When Dallas Green took over as Phillies manager he decided some things had to be changed, sort of a “do it my way” philosophy.

He talked about team, not individual effort and hung signs “We, Not I” in the clubhouse.  “Grind it out,” “repair and prepare,”  “aggressive baseball,”  “character,” “look in the mirror,”  “demeanor” and “intensity” were a few of his favorites.

Spring training was well organized and keyed on refreshing the players’ minds on fundamentals and preparation for the season both “physically and mentally.”

Dallas
The Phillies had great talent, Green knew that.  But, he also realized it would take more than just 12-15 players to win this thing.

In late July he was quoted, “We’ve already made perhaps the most important fundamental change—that we are no longer a team of every day stars but a 25-man team.”

Some managers hum “The Sound of Music” after every game.  Some deal in superlatives.  Some say what they feel they can.  Some say almost nothing.  Dallas is different.  “I’m an aggressive person, a no-nonsense type.  I try to tell it straight and tell it as I feel.  I’m spontaneous and say what’s on my mind, right now.

“I’m not a cop or a DI (drill instructor) but I refuse to let them slip back into old habits, take it easy.  I’ll ruffle some feathers.”

Baseball is a season of peaks and valleys.  The Phillies had their share of both this summer.  Dallas never panicked.

He did ruffle some feathers from time to time with his screaming and yelling (“that’s my nature”).  But, he drilled into the players they couldn’t quit, he wouldn’t let them.

Quit, the Phillies didn’t.

Green’s championship effort can be summed up in the song, MY WAY, made popular by Elvis Presley.  Paul Anka’s words in the second verse:

“Regrets, I’ve had a few, but then again, too few to mention.

“I did what I had to do, and saw it through without exemption.

“I planned each chartered course, each careful step along the way.

“And more, much more than this, I did it My Way.”

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