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Original Issue


The amazing amount of fortitude and spunk displayed by Lyndon Baty is matched by the fascinating advancements in technology that are now available to help him as he battles kidney disease. This young man's story should be an inspiration to everyone.

LeAnn Hicks, Sand Springs, Okla.

Congratulations to Gary Smith on his outstanding article on young Mr. Baty (A Boy and His Bot, Aug. 1). Taking into account the unbelievable obstacles faced by Baty and his family, the story was fascinating, heartwarming and enlightening. I sincerely hope that Baty continues to persevere and that he someday realizes his dream of becoming a professional sportscaster.

Randy H. Satre, Aiken, S.C.

I can't decide if Smith's story is more about innovation or inspiration. As a public school principal, I see the need for more of both daily in our schools. I wish that more students would emulate Baty's desire and appreciation for life and that more parents were as supportive as his mom and dad.

Robin Hardy, Bradenton, Fla.

Is It Over Yet?

I enjoyed Jeff Greenfield's essay about the ever-increasing length of baseball games (SCORECARD, Aug. 1). Nevertheless, there is one group of people who probably think that they end far too soon: the team owners. Over a 162-game season those extra 20 minutes a game add up to a lot of extra revenue. Given the amount of money at stake, I can guarantee that the owners won't be sending out any memos for players to speed up the games.

Jason Armstrong Petersburg, Ind.

There is one rarely discussed factor in why games run so long: relief pitchers warming up before being called into a game in the middle of an inning. Why is this even necessary? What have they been doing in the bullpen? That's like letting a guy shoot around for a few minutes when he subs into a basketball game. Not only does it lengthen the game, but it also sucks the excitement out of the late innings.

Rob Fisher, Arlington, Va.

All Eyes on Bryce

I appreciated Tom Verducci's balanced take on Bryce Harper (Here He Comes, Aug. 1). Harper seems to be a confident, mentally tough young man with a strong work ethic. Still, he's only 18, so people need to give him time to grow. I like how the Nationals are handling his development, and I'm greatly looking forward to what he will bring to the big leagues.

Mike Canning, Oak Park, Ill.

I'm mystified at the level of criticism and vitriol aimed at Harper. Has the Steroid Era left us so disillusioned that we can no longer accept that a player might actually be just what he appears to be—and be worthy of our admiration? Do we really need to tear down our potential heroes first so they don't disappoint us later?

Mike Challman

Fayetteville, Ga.

For Doug Harris to compare what Jackie Robinson had to endure to what Harper is going through is a travesty.

Rodney K. Boswell

Thousand Oaks, Calif.



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Chad Safran: You just had two issues in a row with a heavy emphasis on the NFL. What's going to happen when the season actually starts? Is it going to be 99% football and 1% everything else?

Rob Ciambra (@bigrawb21): I really liked the article on Dustin Pedroia (The Muddy Chicken Hits It Big, Aug. 15). I always admired Pedroia's game but never knew how dedicated he is or the struggles he went through.

Dan Pieroni: While I'll admit that the progress modern medical science is making for athletes is good to hear, there were just too many articles on the topic in the Aug. 8 issue. For a second I thought I was reading The New England Journal of Medicine.

Kevin Morales: I enjoyed the article on Matt Kemp (Matt Kemp Is Just Killing It, Aug. 8). Kemp (below) is finally stepping away from being one of baseball's most underrated players to being one of the most feared sluggers.