We appreciated William Leggett's article, A Success Is Killing the American League (Sept. 9). Something indeed must be done about the junior circuit's plight! With this in mind, we propose the following plan: exchange the Yankees for the Mets!
Without the New York Yankees, the American League, although far inferior to its sister league, would have a genuine pennant race, and a close one at that. Countless fans in Chicago, Minnesota and Baltimore would flock to the ball park to see their home team scramble for the big money. Detroit, Cleveland and Boston would not be out of the running by any means, either. The lovable Mets would also provide a gate attraction, although not as much as their New York counterparts.
The National League race speaks for itself. Can you imagine the Yankees, Dodgers, Giants and Cardinals all fighting it out for the NL flag? It would considerably boost National League attendance figures in all parks.
My solution: exchange the New York franchises.
D. L. FRY
I am not a Yankee fan, but I do admire their success and believe they deserve the high standing they possess. Since it looks like the rest of the American League will never catch up to them, however, I say move the Yankees to the National League and the Mets to the American.
Such a move would be less complicated than the proposed interleague schedule, and it would be nice to have Casey Stengel back in the league where he had such great success.
Why not take five teams from each league and switch them so that each league would have five new teams and five old teams? You could place the teams by ability, the 10 best in one league and the lower 10 in another. This would allow for much closer pennant races, although the World Series would not be much as a contest. If it worked, you could switch teams every 10 years or so.
As a TV baseball fan, I heartily agree that the Yankees are killing the American League. I would not quarrel with the networks for favoring Yankee Stadium for a big majority of their weekly TV shows. I would, however, urge Joe Cronin and his associates to improve the situation without delay. Here is my suggested solution:
1) Let the league arrange the weekly TV and radio broadcasts.
2) Let the proceeds be impounded until the close of the season.
3) After the close of the season, distribute all the proceeds by the "sum-of-the-digits" method.
For example, if the total proceeds for the season amounted to $550,000, divide it as follows:
First place team, 1/55
Second place team, 2/55
Third place team, 3/55
Fourth place team, 4/55
Fifth place team, 5/55
Sixth place team, 6/55
Seventh place team, 7/55
Eighth place team, 8/55
Ninth place team, 9/55
Tenth place team, 10/55
This solution might not correct the present imbalance completely, but it would be a step in the right direction.
E. B. SCHMIDT
My answer to the problem is: eliminate some games from the regular season and have a best-of-seven games playoff as in hockey.
Use this year as an example: Wouldn't Detroit with its "hot streak" and an opportunity to make the playoffs fill Tiger Stadium at every game? Then, too, if New York or any other team had a really commanding lead, other teams would make an extra effort to make the playoffs.
SIDNEY J. WINSTANLEY
What would the Yankees do if five or six American League teams went bankrupt and begged out of the league? Either the mighty Yankees would have to pay these teams large sums of money, give them players or realize that this was the end of "their" league. At any rate, the Yankee dynasty would come to an end, and millions of Yankee haters throughout the world could finally rejoice. So, for the first time I say, "Win, Yanks, win!"
Upper Montclair, N.J.
You published a letter from a feller in Connecticut, with a scant five years' experience at car-camping in national parks, violently objecting to the contention that the majority of the general public does not know how to treat the wilderness (19TH HOLE, Sept. 9). With only five years' experience in the out-of-doors behind him, the poor guy has never seen the parks as they were before this great car-camping urge grasped the American public and sent them skittering, ignorant and destructive, into the woods.
Perhaps the enclosed picture (see below) will serve to enlighten him. It shows a black bear rummaging in a mess that campers left behind them in one of our great wilderness national parks. I won't state which park because park employees have cleaned up the mess since this picture was taken. But that doesn't alter the fact that campers made the mess—despite the fact that there were adequate bear-proof garbage containers readily at hand. Somebody drops a bursting paper sack of muck. The next guy adds to it, and so on until it has reached the state where it interests the bears, who add the final touches. This may look good in Connecticut, but to those of us in the West who knew the wilderness when, it is the height of carelessness.
Congratulations on another excellent pro football issue, especially Tex Maule's article on the Dallas club (The Cowboys Can Ride High on Better Defense, Sept. 9).
However, we Mississippians have heard enough of Lee Roy Jordan and Jim Price. Both are fine athletes, but they are finding it tough to keep up with little-known rookie Harold (Hurricane) Hays, University of Southern Mississippi.
Hays is bigger than Jordan, faster than Price and easily as "mean" on the field as either. Here's a vote for the small-college sleeper who has all the tools to make headlines, except the big buildup and the high price tag.
LIEUT. PAUL C. MORGAN JR.
Once again Tex Maule has gone against the greatest team in professional football—the New York Giants. Once again Tex Maule will be wrong.
South Orange, N.J.
A team "backed by an aging but better than adequate defense"? How can Tex Maule say that about the Giants? Does he come from Dallas?
•No, San Antonio.—ED.
After reading your pro football scouting reports, all I can say is that I had a good laugh. Two "predictions" are absurd. The first absurdity was perpetrated by Tex (he should be called Dallas) Maule, who said that the Cowboys are going to lick the Giants. The other by Tom Brody, who has the nerve to pick the top-class Boston Patriots to finish below the third-class Buffalo Bills.
Are you crazy? What do you mean, Boston Patriots in third? They are an easy second.
The recent alleged world land-speed record perpetrated by Craig Breedlove at Bonneville Salt Flats on August 5 is surely the height of nonsense, and it is time we reviewed the rules about such records.
I notice that a Lockheed designer helped out in planning this wingless three-wheeled airplane. Surely it would have been much cheaper and easier if Lockheed had simply lent Breedlove one of its Starfighters to fly over the Bonneville Salt Flats. He could have lowered the undercarriage, dived down to the measured mile and—with the two rear wheels and steerable front wheel just making visible tracks on the salt surface—driven through a measured mile. At the end of the first run he could pull up, make a turn and repeat the performance in the opposite direction. This would be a lot cheaper and would meet exactly the same conditions—but it would not be a land-speed record any more than the wingless airplane driven by Craig Breedlove.
Ste. Agathe-des-Monts, Que.
The recent picture of a slowly sinking VW (The Beetle Does Float, Aug. 19) needs a postscript: VWs not only float, they sail right smartly. I know, because a sailing friend of mine, Karl Staubach, has proved the point by making a trim little sailing scow from the top of a VW bus. He compared dishlike tops of all competing trucks, buses and vans and found VW first in marine design. He then bought a non-sunroof top for a song from the local junkyard, decked it over neatly and put in a scow-type cockpit, skegs, twin rudders and mast. Finished oil" with a yellow-and-red-striped mainsail, she (the XVW-BT) looks and sails like a VW owner is accustomed to expect.
And there's room for all the family, plus luggage.
Ann Arbor, Mich.
Oh, what a sneaky trick! The first picture shows some idiot has left the VW hood loose: the second shows it has come completely open. Even a battleship will eventually sink if a sea cock is left open.
Grand Canyon, Ariz.