“I’d spit again at the same peopled who boohed me today,” Ted Williams said last night after learning of the $5,000 fine imposed on him by Sox owner Tom Yawkey.
There was talk about that Williams would quit after the latest incident with the fans.
Will you be at the ball park tomorrow?
“Probably,” he roared, “because I can’t afford a $5,000 fine.”
Why do the boohs bother you?
“Now you got that quote …. two things … First, I’d spit at the same people who boohed me today. Second, I wouldn’t be at the ball park tomorrow if I could afford a $500 … er $5,000 fine every day.”
“Got it? … Read it back to me. I said boohing fans …”
Is Ted Williams considering quitting? Is this his last year?
“Probably …” he said.
Williams launched a tirade against certain Boston writers -- almost all of them columnists -- in which he castigated them for their writings over the past 18 years -- or since Williams broke in with the Red Sox.
Williams was fuming.
He was in a rage in the dugout after the latest spitting incident.
He spat four times, including one directed at the Yankees’ bench.
Manager Mike Higgins approached his star player in the dugout to calm him.
“I talked to him,” Higgins said later.
“Will you take any action?” asked a scribe.
“That will come later,” said Higgins, upset over the situation.
Ted reportedly ‘sorry’
Cronin said, “Ted was sorry he did it. He told me he didn’t know why he did it.”
The slugger raved in the Red Sox clubhouse after the game and he reportedly threatened to quit the game then and there.
That was before he was apprised of the fine by Cronin.
The spitting incident was the third in recent weeks.
The boohing fans have driven Williams to his worst tantrums. He said recently, “I played here 18 years, hit .350 lifetime and they still boo me!”
Cronin announced the fine himself and said it was strictly for spitting -- not throwing the bat which he did after he walked to force in the winning run.
“We cannot condone such actions,” he said.
Williams put Higgins, who has handled the big star with utmost patience, on the spot.
He has never said anything to Williams. He has had his own way in everything, from Spring training on. Higgins realized his value to the team and, like all managers, wants a happy ball club, if possible.
Yesterday’s blatant act -- it was broadcast coast-to-coast as the “Game of the Day” -- meant that Higgins had to do something.
Boohing nothing new
The fine isn’t going to change Williams’ feelings. The boohs, undoubtedly will continue, and Williams will have to take them or quit.
One old major leaguer said yesterday, “Everybody’s been boohed. There’s nothing new in that. We’ve all taken it one time or another.
Boston fans have adopted a boohing attitude. Williams blames this on certain writers. Jackie Jensen and Don Buddin have been subjected to violent boohing too and they don’t care for it any more than Williams.
There will be no public apology from Williams. Several years ago Williams -- at the behest of owner Tom Yawkey -- apologized for certain gestures he made while leaving the field.