Mario Andretti certainly deserved better than the Point After page.
JOHN H. ADAMS. POMPTON PLAINS, N.J.
One could write copy on Jack Kent Cooke until the Hogs come home (Hello, Anybody Home? Oct. 3), but how can anyone write a piece on the Redskins' fall from the ranks of the NFL elite and fail to mention their losing the best general manager in the league? Bobby Beathard's departure from Washington to San Diego in 1989 sent ruinous fissures through the Redskin foundation, and the team has yet to recover. Who could witness the rocketing fortunes of the Chargers and not make the connection?
HARRY ATWOOD, London
Every good franchise has a few "proud and cocksure, boorish" fans, as John Ed Bradley describes us in Washington, but I don't see how Bradley walked around RFK Stadium on game day without seeing the thousands of fans who have suffered through the lean years and rejoiced during the Super Bowl years. Sure we get frustrated when we lose. Name any NFL city that doesn't.
ANN AND BILL BUMPUS, Berlin, Md.
Any intelligent observer knows that a team must rebuild at some point.
DAN MENEAR, Palmyra, Pa.
What, Mario Andretti not on your cover the week that he retired? Did you read your own article, that small one on the last page with a tiny picture? Come on, where's your sense of history? Put the biggest sports story of the week where it belongs—front and center.
CAROL BUDNER, Birmingham
It was great to see a cover story on the San Diego Chargers (High Voltage, Oct. 17). I've been a Charger fan since the glory days of Fouts to Joiner, Jefferson and Winslow. The new Chargers have a good ball-control offense and a stingy defense. Under the guidance of the Killer B's—Bobby Ross, Bob Beathard and Bill Arnsparger—San Diego has laid a foundation that should make it a winner for years to come.
BEN DANNER, Liberty, S.C.
I can't believe your Charger article failed to mention the bulwark of the defense, Junior Seau. Shame on you.
VAN IRVINE, Scottsdale, Ariz.
Thanks for intelligently and succinctly exposing the real culprits behind the current sports labor strife (Blame the Bosses, Oct. 10). While neither owners nor players deserve sympathy, only one side truly deserves blame. The owners got themselves into the mess they're in, and now they expect the players to fix what they screwed up.
Unfortunately, many fans have been sucked into standing on the owners' shaky, contrived platform. Maybe your story will get some people to jump off.
THEO CHEN, Carrollton, Texas
I was disappointed in your article blaming the owners for the baseball strike. I see them as heroic and gutsy, doing what needs to be done to save sports. I wish more business and government leaders addressed what is a serious problem in our country—excessive compensation.
ROBERT DOLAN, Wilmette, Ill.
As I prepare to manage Caguas in the Puerto Rican winter league, I am not bitter or envious about the salaries being paid today, but I am angry about the selfishness and coldness some players and their leaders have displayed throughout the negotiations. The owners are not blameless, but in looking at the whole picture, there must be some control over the economics of the game. If costs are controlled, then ticket prices can be controlled. Players, think about the fans. They are your fans. Without them, pro sports would cease to exist. Your agents and your union leaders don't have to answer to or face your fans. You do. For 162 games.
My father taught me to cherish my years in a major league uniform because, when he was a child, blacks like himself were denied such an opportunity. He taught me to love and respect the game, a lesson more of us need to learn.
MIKE EASLER, Caguas, P.R.
•Easier played for six teams during his major league career, from 1973 to '87.—ED.
Thank you for Steve Rushin's article on four people put out of work by the baseball strike (Casualties of War, Oct. 10). I have been a vendor at Yankee Stadium since 1970, and I'm glad a major publication got around to telling our side of the story. Selfish millionaires are fighting greedy billionaires, and we are caught in the middle. I believe some 30,000 men and women have lost jobs because of this disgraceful strike. Our hearts are as empty as the stadiums.
JERRY SCHEIN, Bronx, N.Y.
JOHN W. MCDONOUGH
Seau has led the charge for San Diego's solid defense.
Letters to SPORTS ILLUSTRATED should include the name, address and home telephone number of the writer and should be addressed to The Editor, SPORTS ILLUSTRATED, Time & Life Building, Rockefeller Center, New York, N.Y. 10020-1393.