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Cleveland's Jody Gerut should have been mentioned in the AL Rookie of the Year discussion. Gerut's numbers are comparable to, if not better than, those of Rocco Baldelli and Angel Berroa, and he got them on a team that afforded him little protection in the lineup.
Without Shannon Stewart the Twins were mired in third place and getting worse. With him, and largely because of him, they had the best record in the majors after the All-Star break and won their division going away, but he didn't even make your list of top 10 candidates for the AL MVP. Neither A-Rod nor anyone else on your list came close to having such a demonstrable impact on his team. Isn't that a better measure of Most Valuable than the individual statistics you cite?
When Hideo Nomo and Ichiro were being considered for the Rookie of the Year award, I at first thought it undermined the notion of a rookie. The comparison with Jackie Robinson—who played in the Negro leagues and for whom the award is named—gave me pause, but what convinced me that Hideki Matsui should be eligible was the picture of him in his pimp suit (SCORECARD, Sept. 22). If he's hazed like a rookie, he must be a rookie.
Rule of Three
Blount mentions that there have been no big league triplets, but there were minor league Triplets, specifically the Bingham-ton (N.Y.) Triplets who played in the Eastern League from the League's founding in 1923 through the '60s. Johnson Field, their home, had a pump house in deep left center that was an ideal target for triples. So, how many triples did the Triplets hit when the Triplets got good wood?
Lone Star Legends
Perhaps the most important sporting event with ties to Texas was absent from your section on Texas sports. Don Haskins and the Texas Western (now UTEP) basketball team deserved at least some recognition for defeating Adolph Rupp's Kentucky Wildcats for the 1966 NCAA title. Not only did Haskins make a statement by starting five African-Americans against Rupp's all-white Kentucky team, the game was played at the height of the civil rights movement and ushered in a new era for minorities in college sports.