Let us examine the personnel. Mantle is a fine player, but always an uncertain quantity because his legs are brittle. He has not shown these aging glimmers he is the equal of DiMaggio.
I cannot see how many of today's Yanks could make the 1936 team. Who could displace any member of an infield that included Gehrig, Lazzeri, Crosetti and Rolfe? Gil McDougald would probably be utility infielder for that combine. And has Berra (at his best) been the equal of Bill Dickey? I think not. The Yankees today have only two quality pitchers: Turley and Ford (and Whitey has been having his troubles lately). A possible third one might be Sturdivant, but sore arm trouble has sidelined him. The 1936 staff was superb. As a matter of fact, if the Braves this fall can take either Turley or Ford in the first two games, they have an excellent chance of whipping the Yankees in five games.
Ah, woe is us! We must face the awesome probability that the annoying Mr. Burdette will win two games. Last October I admired him even while I wanted to choke him for his masterful whitewashing of my Yanks!
I enjoyed your article. It was thought-provoking, the sort of stuff that can be argued at the nearest tavern over tall cold glasses.
JAMES BUSBEE JR.
BOXING: No. 2 IS FIRST
I'm sure that I echo the sentiment of all Texans when I say I'm still proud of Roy Harris. There certainly was nothing disgraceful in his defeat; in fact, Harris showed much more than most people figured he would.
Anyone who witnessed the fight will not soon forget the raw courage Roy displayed against the bombing punches of Patterson. He continually fought back under conditions to which an average fighter would have surrendered.
I believe Roy will improve greatly in the next few months from the experience gained and will be a tremendous draw in Texas as well as the rest of the country. However, I think it would be a serious mistake if Roy ever tried to fight Patterson again no matter how much he improved. He'll just have to be content to be second best in boxing but first in the heart of Texans!
FOOTBALL: PROOF POSITIVE
One of the questions that is most frequently argued about by football fans is whether Pennsylvania produces the best football players.
This question was even raised in your magazine (How Colleges Gather in a New Crop, SI, June 18, '56) when you surveyed the crop of Pennsylvania high school stars who had graduated that spring. To prove your point even further, you followed up (The Crop Begins to Ripen, SI, April 1, '57) and reported on their successes for their respective schools the previous fall.
You still did not have concrete proof to answer the question. It still was all theory. And yet when you had a chance to finally clinch your case, you ignored it altogether.