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Original Issue

19TH HOLE: The readers take over

Dr. Schissel has been heard from again (19TH HOLE, June 16). Mr. Woodcock'sarticle to which he refers is to be commended. The point that perfection doesnot always insure box-office appeal is solid.

Dr. Schissel'ssuggestion that the Yankees be dispersed among American League teams is nosolution. The face of baseball, especially in the American League, has changed.Despite denials from several corners, the Yankee organization has made baseballbig business. It incorporates the most efficient business procedures, and theresult has been a product so smooth that its consumer appeal has diminished.One might ask, "When is a sport not a sport?" One might answer,"When it is Yankee baseball."

The other teamsin the American League will have to accept the standards set by the Yankees andrise to them. Only the naive assume that baseball is to be anything but abusiness proposition for the men who finance it. If they are to avoidbankruptcy as far as pennants and World Series are concerned, they have noother choice. The Yankees have built an empire. It was not built in a day, asgoes the cliché.

There are manypeople who are bored with Yankee victories year after year, but they are notpeople who write letters to editors. Isn't there anyone in the New York areawho believes that there is something wrong in a sport when the competitionresults in a struggle for second place because first place—over the longseason—is awarded to the same team each season, even before the season hasstarted?
Mt. Vision, N.Y.

Let's be sensible. Dr. Schissel's idea of breaking up the Yankees isridiculous. To be sure, the Yankees have been ahead in the final standings forthe last several years, but why break up a great team? Let the other teams inthe American League rise to the occasion.
Albert Lea, Minn.

The Tigers don't need Kubek from the Yankees, they need George Weiss! Detroithas been operating without a major league general manager since 1945.

Let's break upNew York, but be sure the purring Tigers get Weiss. The hell with Mantle,Turley, etc. We want Weiss! We need Weiss.
Houghton Lake, Mich.

If you must break up our Yankees, please at least leave us just Casey to talkto.
Peterborough, N.H.

Here's a bit of verse, a parody of the current pop hit, that is making theround of the L.A. environs these days. Hope your readers enjoy it.


He's got thewhole world in his hands,
He's got the L.A. council in his hands,
He's got Chavez Ravine in his hands,
But he's only got a last place team.
He's got the itty bitty babies with bats in their hands,
He's got the pony leaguers sitting miles from the stands,
He's got a cheap ladies' day when a sputnik lands,
But he's only got a last-place team.
He's got the television tied up in his hands,
He's got the shut-ins crying from his demands,
He's got the sportswriters lying to all the fans,
But he's only got a last-place team.
He's got the mayor and his cronies in his hands,
He's got the Hollywood phonies in his hands,
He's got the whole damned world in his hands,
But he's only got a last-place team.
Los Angeles

•For another hometown report on the Dodgers see page 28.—ED.

In 19TH HOLE, April 21, you published a telegram from Los Angeles DodgerPresident Walter O'Malley referring to the boo-boo made by Artist Ravielli insketching baseball stitches. I have enjoyed the exactness in the figure drawingof Ravielli for months, particularly his Hogan golf series, and feel that hisstitch error was minor.

Just yesterday Inoticed one of O'Malley's own posters (see picture) and guess what? The sameerror on the baseball occurred!

He who lives in aglass house shouldn't throw curves!
San Pedro, Calif.

I am one of those known in the trade as an "impulse buyer"; anywayimpulse made me buy the June 16 issue because of the action shots of Hoad andGonzales.

Frankly I am notinterested enough in sports to subscribe to any sports magazine, but thatarticle by Joel Sayre (Georgie's Roaring River, SI, June 16, 23) is one of themost exciting I have ever read, even of his.

You keeppublishing Sayre, and I'll keep buying. And thanks for the tennis pictures.
New York City


In answer to Jimmy Jemail's HOTBOX question regarding the 250-foot screen atthe L.A. Coliseum (SI, June 16), Mr. Frank Lane claims that if Babe Ruth'srecord of 60 home runs is broken, the new record should bear a "qualifyingfootnote."

Permit me to askMr. Lane this: Does he feel that a "qualifying footnote" should appearon Babe Ruth's record of 60 home runs?

When Ruth setthat record (1927) a ball which hit fair territory in the outfield and thenbounced into the stands was recorded as a home run. The precise number of suchhome runs which Ruth hit that year never was recorded officially. And rightlyso. According to the official ruling such a hit was a home run, not a groundrule double as it is now.

But, if I followMr. Lane correctly, any record established under "easy conditions"should be qualified with a footnote. This is nonsense. Suppose one ofCleveland's hurlers pitched a no-hitter against the Yankees on a day when alltheir regulars were sidelined with injuries? Would Mr. Lane then"qualify" the no-hitter with a "footnote" because it waspitched under "easy conditions"?

He'd fume to thegills at such a suggestion.
New York City

•Many baseballbuffs have long been bothered by the possibility that some of therecord-setting 60 homers hit by Ruth in 1927 might have bounced into thebleachers from the outfield—a hit now good for only two bases. Recently,however, evidence from two top experts indicates that purists can put awaytheir doubts, that home runs hit by the Babe flew all the way. For instance,Baseball Statistician Seymour Siwoff, editor of the Little Red Book of BigLeague Baseball: "I have searched the newspaper files and studied thereports of the 1927 games and nowhere do I find a bounce-in homer attributed toRuth." Corroborating Siwoff's findings is the testimony of SportswriterArthur Mann, who covered the 1927 Yankee games for the Evening World. WritesMann: "I cannot recall any of Ruth's 60 home runs bouncing in from theplaying field. What is more important, my scorebook shows none." But Mann'sscorebook does indeed show a number of bounce-in homers hit by others,including one by Ruth's teammate, Lou Gehrig.—ED.

Reader Justus (19TH HOLE, June 2) may be interested to know that Track &Field News will lead a tour to the Rome Olympics, just as we have to the pasttwo Olympics. Mr. Justus is invited to join the more than 200 track and fieldfans who have accompanied our group to great international meetings since 1952.And while planning for the 1960 Olympics is going ahead at full speed we havethree groups going to Europe this summer—for the British Empire Games inCardiff, Wales; for the European Athletic Championships in Stockholm; and forthe U.S.A. vs. U.S.S.R. meet in Moscow.
Publisher Track & Field News
Los Altos, Calif.

As it is not often that we have the pleasure of welcoming an American rider tothe Tourist Motor Cycle Races in the Isle of Man (SCOREBOARD, June 16), it ishoped that this photograph of John Marcotte of California will prove ofinterest. The Bishop of Sodor and Man provides an interesting background.

For a newcomer,Marcotte performed admirably and, after averaging over 77 mph in the juniorTourist Trophy event, he rode the same machine in the senior event andincreased his average to 83 mph. For his performance, he was awarded a bronzereplica of the main trophy.

Motorcycle racingenjoys a very high standing on this side of the Atlantic and attracts manythousands of spectators. It is to be hoped that on future occasions it will bepossible for additional riders from the U.S. to compete and they are assured ofa tremendous welcome.
London, England