Orlando Cepeda went hitless in six trips in his Red Sox debut at Fenway.
“I could have had a couple of hits,” said Cepeda, the new Red Sox designated hitter. “I was swinging okay. I don’t let days like this bother me. I put it out of my mind and look ahead. I never look back. What good does it do you to worry about something that has already happened.”
Luis Tiant said he had a stiff shoulder during the game but wanted to finish.
“I didn’t want to come out. My shoulder was a little light, but I wanted to go nine. You start coming out of games early and it gets to be a thing up here,” said Tiant, pointing to his head.”You start thinking you can’t go nine innings and this is bad. I want to go nine all the time.”
Reggie Smith had a sore hand last night because Carl Yastrzemski stole a base.
“He [pitcher Casey Cox] was mad as hell when Yaz stole on him,” said Smith, who got nailed with a fastball on his hand the next pitch.
With the score 15-4 in the eighth inning the Yanks didn’t expect a steal. They played back and let Yastrzemski take any kind of lead he wanted away from first base and he obliged by stealing.
“Why not?” said Smith, “they gave him second. What’s he supposed to do, stay on first? After it happened Cox walked around the mound mumbling and when I saw the next pitch coming in on me I knew he was mad.”
Reggie opened the door for the Yanks’ three-run first inning when a routine fly ball dropped beside him in centerfield. “I saw it leave the bat and never saw it again after that. I was afraid I was going to get hit in the head. It was so close to me I could hear it coming down.”
Smith, blinded by a strong sun, only had to take one step to retrieve the ball which landed right beside him.
Yastrzemski had a home run and a single in the game. “I like the way I’m swinging the bat. I thought the ball I hit late in the game (with the bases loaded) would have been out of the park on a normal day here. The rind just held it up.
“The wind today was the worst I’ve seen here blowing out from that direction. We’ve had some days as bad here for wind, with it coming in from right field on the hitter. But today it was blowing out.”