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NATIONAL LEAGUE BASEBALL
Robert Creamer
April 11, 1955
Cincinnati or Chicago will be leading the league Monday night but 168 days later—well, figure it out for yourself
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April 11, 1955

National League Baseball

Cincinnati or Chicago will be leading the league Monday night but 168 days later—well, figure it out for yourself

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STRONG POINTS:
Willie Mays, Alvin Dark and Johnny Antonelli, who provide a tremendously strong, tried nucleus for a championship club. The double-barreled relief pitching of Hoyt Wilhelm and Marvin Grissom. The remarkably large proportion of real all-round athletic ability: men who can run, throw, hit, field and think, and who seem to thrive on playing. Durocher's ability to make a winning club think it is invincible.

WEAK SPOTS:
Shaky second-line pitching between top starters and relief men. Lack of competent all-round outfield reserves (Rhodes is strictly a pinch hitter).

ROOKIE HOPES:
Promising group, but help for World Series team is expected only from Infielder Foster Castleman who spent last half of '54 with Giants, played only 13 games.

THE BIG IFS:
Sal Maglie and Monte Irvin. Maglie, 37, must approximate last year's fine record (14-6); Irvin must forget last year (.262), hit as he did in '51 (.312, 121 RBIs). If Maglie fails, rehabilitated Jim Hearn has to take up slack. If Irvin fails, Giants could be in serious trouble.

THE OUTLOOK:
Hard to fault Giants now; they are the team to beat.

BROOKLYN DODGERS

THIS YEAR'S PROSPECTS:

STRONG POINTS:
For the most part, a seasoned team of hard-hitting, smooth-fielding old pros. Two really outstanding power hitters in Duke Snider and Gil Hodges. One of the great infielders of all time in Pee Wee Reese.

WEAK SPOTS:
Age is catching up with the whole team. Young replacements like Gilliam, Hoak, Zimmer, Amoros have yet to prove themselves as real major leaguers. Pitching staff long on quantity but notoriously undependable, lacking a reliable "stopper."

ROOKIE HOPES:
Karl Spooner, strike-out sensation at the tail end of last season, is being counted on to prove in '55 that '54 was no fluke.

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