NORTHERNER DOWN SOUTH
After reading your article, A Derby Star Rises (March 9), I am thoroughly convinced that your writers would have trouble picking a winner in a one-horse race. Whitney Tower has now made the biggest blunder of all by giving five horses a better chance to win the Kentucky Derby than the great Canadian colt, Northern Dancer. The son of Nearctic proved in the Flamingo Stakes that he is the class of the 3-year-old division. His contenders have had two chances against him—slim and none. He has the best chance of becoming the first Triple Crown winner since Citation. When the five horses Tower picked meet Northern Dancer in the Derby, they will wish they had never come out of the barn.
DAVID A. ZATT
Long Beach, N.Y.
The New York Mets—ugh! The crowned clowns of baseball, those bungling boobs of baseball, that bunch who should be booked on the Ed Sullivan Show as the greatest comedy ever, bar none, are supposed to out-draw the New York Yankees at the gate this year, says William Leggett (Trouble Sprouts for the Yankees, March 2). "But why not?" ask Met fans. "After all, we have Selma, Carmel, Kanehl and Haas." Who? Well, I believe that there are still many of us who would rather see the Yankees.
Too much success over a period of years, with the resultant lack of competition, always results in decreased attendance, no matter what the sport. One of my earliest recollections is of my father telling me why Connie Mack broke up his $100,000 infield: because, after winning three championships and returning from a highly successful western trip, they were greeted by a little over 2,000 people on a beautiful day in Philadelphia.
A more recent parallel in basketball would be the Minneapolis (now Los Angeles) Lakers, who won several championships and were hardly ever beaten at home—to the point that their attendance dropped off and the franchise was switched. Of more recent vintage is the case of our Boston Celtics who, while well supported at the gate, draw more on the road than they do in Boston.
People, by nature, root for the underdog.
JOSEPH J. FAY
When you predict that the Mets will out-draw the Yanks, because they are more colorful, you must also take into consideration that the Yankees are in the AL and the Mets in the NL.
Each year the Yankees run away with the flag without much trouble. On the other hand, the Mets may end up in last, but at least they are in a league that has three or four teams all fighting at once. This is why Mr. Herman Ringler—and many others—will be sitting in new Shea Stadium watching a losing team in a winning league.
I don't know how adults feel, because I am a 10-year-old sports fan and my family subscribes to your magazine for me. But all my friends—if they had a chance—would far rather see a Yankee game anytime. Probably all boys my age feel the same.
I have been a Met fan all my life [15 years]. The main reason for their success is that they are "the greatest."
The attitude of the White Sox management as expressed by Ed Short in the Jim Brosnan affair leaves me somewhat puzzled (This Pitcher May Need Relief, March 16). They made no objection that I ever read to the off-season activities of players engaged in other business. I can think of one player—another pitcher—who gasps his lungs out on the basketball floor during the pro season. Evidently, writing is more strenuous than this!