I got quite a chuckle out of Father Gagnon's letter about breaking records (19TH HOLE, Oct. 8). And for the simple reason that this is what cost the Dodgers the National League championship. They got so interested in breaking season records that they forgot to win the pennant:
Most bases stolen by one man
Most times at bat for a shortstop
Longest nine-inning game on record
Most attendance during a baseball season
Most bases stolen by one team
Pitcher with the most victories
League leader with runs driven in
Most triples (tied with Pittsburgh)
Most automobiles parked
And, probably, most beer sold
As Grantland Rice might have said:
They aimed to break the record.
They cared not for the Race,
So they broke two dozen records,
And wound up in second place.
E. C. BURNS
Sherman Oaks, Calif.
As an Englishman accustomed to following soccer, I was intrigued by the method used to determine the National League pennant winner. In England soccer abandoned the playoff system in 1898 and if a tie on points results at the top of a league the champions are decided by "goal average." The number of goals scored by each team is divided by those it lets in, and the side with the highest resulting value is declared champion. It might be interesting to see whether the Dodgers or the Giants would have won the pennant if we calculated their "run averages."
?Still the Giants. San Francisco scored a total of 878 runs this season, allowed 690 for a 1.27 average as opposed to the Dodgers' total record of 842 against 697 for an average of 1.21.—ED.
FLASH OF HISTORY
Willie Davis the fastest player ever to perform in the major leagues?
Did Author Tom Brody (A Snake-sliding Dodger Tries to Steal the Pennant, Oct. 1) ever see Maurice Archdeacon of the early '20s Chicago White Sox?
A streak little outfielder, "Flash" Archdeacon beat out a larger percentage of infield taps than any man in baseball history. His .333 lifetime batting average was compiled at the expense of an era of supergreat in-fielders of which the American League is justly proud. Archdeacon's speed exhibitions at circling the bases is never to be forgotten.
C. L. MORGAN