I cried the firsttime, the second time and now the 10th time I read the story of the CentralWashington players' selfless act. I don't know how many people will "do theright thing" because of this article, but I'm going to do my best toincrease the number.
Win Watson, Madbury, N.H.
This line aboutMallory Holtman (The Way It Should Be, June 29) grabbed my attention: "Shehas a brother and father who will let nothing harm her. She has a mother andsister who affirm her without condition. She has spent more than four yearslearning from a coach who would rather lose in the mud than win by arainout." It demonstrates how the teaching of sportsmanship must start athome with parents and continue with coaches and teachers who foster the properbalance between competitiveness and compassion.
David R. Fishkin Briarcliff Manor, N.Y.
The video of thismoment should be required viewing before the first organized team activity ofany sport at any level, especially the professionals.
Rick Mansfield Ponte Vedra, Fla.
Your storyincludes a letter to Mallory from youth baseball coach Kevin Hunt, one of themany people touched by her act, who complained that an opposing coach showed"extremely poor sportsmanship" when he appealed to the umpire about oneof Hunt's players missing a base. As a father, teacher and high school girls'softball coach, I cannot endorse the babying of our children when they err. Ifa player is called out, he will learn his lesson and never miss a base again;if you let him off the hook, he will think that "honest mistakes" willalways be forgiven.
Eric Stewart, Elgin, Ill.
After reading yourstory I went to save it for my three daughters, ages six, four and two, and wasdisappointed to find the opposite side of the last page plastered with imagesof scantily clad swimsuit models (THE VAULT, June 29). I will actually use thisas a teaching moment about what real beauty is. Thank you, Mallory Holtman, forbeing the true "supermodel" for our girls.
Kate Mills, Cary, N.C.
It is virtuallycertain that Joe Mauer will fail to hit .400 this season. Apart from thereasons usually cited—the long schedule, coast-to-coast air travel and,especially, the rigors of catching—a player would have to be superhuman not tosuccumb to the relentless media pressure. When your story (Joe Mauer WillSerenely, Politely Crush You, June 29) came out, it wasn't even July, for God'ssake! Fortunately, Mauer appears to be more concerned with helping his teamthan with reaching an arbitrary individual milestone.
Nicholas R. Lang Charlottesville, Va.
My favorite partof Tom Verducci's story was about how Mauer quickly left the bustle of New YorkCity after the 2008 All-Star Game to enjoy the peace and quiet of his cabin. Ijust hope the Twins will be able to pay enough to keep him in Minnesota.
Mike Anderson, Nutley, N.J.
I had bet my kidsa couple of weeks ago that our hometown hero and all-around good guy, JoeMauer, would soon make the cover of SPORTS ILLUSTRATED. But something tells meeven Joe himself would've rather been "benched" for Mallory Holtman.Indeed, both of these athletes represent "the way it should be."
Jeff Huston, Wayzata, Minn.
Your essay on raindelays (SCORECARD, June 29) says that football, unlike other sports,"welcomes a battle with the elements as just another test of manhood."The exception is the Super Bowl, which is played only in warm-weather locationsor domes. I would love to see the NFL rotate the game among all its teams'cities and see Super Bowls played in the elements.
Zeke Reece, Boonville, N.C.
Your storyreferenced the movie Bull Durham with the line, "Crash Davis himself oncesaid, 'Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose, sometimes it rains.'" Thatquote came from Ebby Calvin (Nuke) LaLoosh in his first interview after beingcalled up to the Show. If Crash were writing to you, I think he'd say,"You're gonna have to learn your movie quotes. You're gonna have to studythem, you're gonna have to know them. They're your friends."
Will Britt, Columbia, S.C.
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