Mattingly Threatens To Quit. (USA Today 8/11/94)


     NEW YORK - New York Yankees captain Don Mattingly is
  threatening to retire rather than submit to management's insistence
  on sweeping changes in player compensation.
     "I'd rather not play another game than give up everything
  everybody fought for," say Mattingly.  "I'll stay home in Indiana
  for the rest of my life."
     Mattingly, 33, is upset because he believes owners, with their
  demand for a salary cap and approach to negotiations, will force
  baseball's eighth work stoppage in 22 years. Players are set to
  strike at the end of today's games.
     "You hear chants of `No strike, no strike,' " says Mattingly.
  "From our point of view, it's `no choice, no choice.' We give in to
  what they want to do or we have no choice (but to strike)."
     Mattingly hoped this season would culminate a potential Hall of
  Fame career. He owns a batting title, a Most Valuable Player award
  and eight Gold Gloves. But he has never played in a World Series.
     The Yankees are well on their way to their first American League
  East title since another strike year, 1981.
     And yet Mattingly knows it might all go for naught.  "If that's
  my fate, so be it. If it means I don't go to postseason, I don't go
  to postseason," he says. "Is it tragic? I don't know. I've still
  had a great time with other things."
     Mattingly understands the goal that has driven him since he
  broke in in 1983 - reaching the World Series - might be taken away
  for reasons that have nothing to do with on-field performance.
  "I've come to understand how tough it is to have a chance at it,"
  Mattingly says, "and we have a chance."
     But what worries him more is the consequences of an extended
  strike.
     "It bothers me not only for myself and my teammates but
  baseball as a whole," he says.
     And he believes the potential loss of this year's  postseason
  could be devastating. The World Series has been played every year
  since 1905.
     "If that happened, it would be a lot different from any other
  stoppages," he says. "It would be monumental."
     And he would understand the fans' disillusionment with the game.
     "As a fan, if I was going to follow something three-quarters of
  the year and there were no playoffs, I don't know if I'd ever come
  back. I really don't," he says.
     Mattingly says he believes the majority of fans, even if they
  can not relate to today's salaries, understand the players' point
  of view. He also knows there are others who can not begin to grasp
  complex issues such as salary cap, arbitration, and freedom of
  movement.
     "I don't want to look into an 8-year-old's eyes. He doesn't
  understand," Mattingly says. "It's totally unfair."

Copyright 1994, USA TODAY, a division of Gannett Co., Inc.

Pedulla, Tom, Mattingly threatens to quit // Owners' salary cap demand has Yankees captain fed up., USA TODAY, 08-11-1994, pp 03.




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