Green also discusses the loss of his granddaughter, Christina-Taylor Green, who was killed in the 2011 shooting in Tucson, Arizona at a constituents' meeting hosted by then-U.S. Representative Gabrielle Giffords.
Highlights from this episode of Studio 42 with Bob Costas include:
Green on the 1980 World Championship Phillies team:
Truthfully, they didn't really like me. I just brought in some disciplines that they didn't care for and Danny [Ozark] had never pressed them for. The yelling sessions that I had were only to get their attention and to bring them back to where I thought they [should be]. I knew we had a good baseball team, but we didn't play as a team. They played very individual baseball. Schmitty [Mike Schmidt] had hit all those home runs, Bull [Greg Luzinski] had hit home runs and [Steve] Carlton had won a Cy Young. We had great individual guys, but we didn't get that team concept together and that's what I kept harping on all year.
My mouth was a big asset, but it was also a detriment. There's no question about it, throughout my career. It got me in a lot of trouble [and] it got me fired sometimes.
I always believed that when I got a job, I wanted to sink my teeth into it and that's why 1980 was so important. I did that, I did it with my heart and soul, the great passion for the game of baseball, and for the Phillies. It was kind of our last hurrah for that team.
Green on Ryne Sandberg's two-home run game against the Cardinals on June 23, 1984 [footage of which is featured in the episode]:
It was his defining moment, no question, and the Cubs' defining moment. We came back against a team and against a guy [Bruce Sutter] that was very, very difficult to beat…The last home run, everybody thought we were beat…When Sandberg hit that, we all went nuts and, from that time on, we knew we had a good baseball team.
Green on the Cubs losing the 1984 NLCS to the Padres:
I'm still not over it. I talk to Sarge [Gary Matthews] about it. I talked to a lot of guys about it…Probably the most disappointing. I've had a lot of down times…but this baby really hurt.
Green on who he needed to apologize to the most for his outspoken personality:
George Steinbrenner more than anybody else, I think, believe it or not. I called him "Manager George," and that got me fired. I always respected Mr. Steinbrenner. I really did. He was one of the owners, back in those days, he put his money where his mouth was. He loved New York and he wanted good things to happen for the Yankees and for New York. I was all on-board with that kind of stuff. That hurt me because it just was bad timing, and I had no business saying it.
Green on his relationship with Steinbrenner towards the end of his life:
I really never got a chance to visit with him much after that. It's the same old thing. Hindsight is 20/20 all the time. I should've picked up the phone and called him.
Green on the loss of his granddaughter, Christina-Taylor, in the 2011 shooting in Tucson:
I can tear up with the best of them still and we miss Christina-Taylor Green terribly in our family. The tragedy was for my son [John], for my daughter-in-law [Roxanna] and little Dallas, who was really best buddies with Christina. They've worked very hard to get through it. We've worked hard as a family to get through it. John and Roxanna have done a tremendous job in supporting the community and trying to get Christina's charity fund on the right track. I had baseball, my son has baseball, Roxanna wrote a book as good as she could manage. I think all that helped get us through. We'll never get over it. None of us will. She was a heck of a gal.
Green on his granddaughter's desire to be the first female Major League Baseball player:
She had those desires and she was a good athlete. I saw her play one time. My son John worked with her, obviously. She loved the game of baseball and she loved the competition of baseball. I always thought, being a gal, that was kind of special, as well. But she handled it as good as it can be handled.