PRO AND CON
The American League announced last week that it would expand to 12 teams by 1971. The argument for expansion is that people all over the country deserve to see major league sport. Large cities that have no big-league baseball at present—Dallas and Seattle, for instance—have a right to it.
Twenty years ago considerable baseball interest was centered on minor league teams, but now it is strictly on the big leagues. The minors, for the most part, are nothing more than training camps for the majors, and their success or failure is immaterial to hometown baseball fans.
In 1961 the American League added two teams, the Angels and the Senators. Those clubs now compete on equal terms. California was a factor in this year's pennant race until the last five weeks of the season, finally ending up fifth in the standings. Washington finished tied for sixth.
Unfortunately the same cannot be said for the National League, which is also contemplating setting up two new franchises. After six years the Houston Astros and New York Mets are still not equal to the competition. Two more teams would only increase the imbalance and further dilute the quality of play in the league. New York and Houston illustrate the undesirable aspects of expansion. Unless care is taken in stocking new clubs to make them competitive, expansion hurts rather than helps baseball.
One of Britain's outstanding cricketers, Colin Milburn, is spending two weeks at a beauty farm in Bedfordshire, attempting—along with 18 women—to get in shape. At 5' 10" and 260 pounds, Mil-burn looks considerably more like the ball than the bat. He was bounced off the All-England squad last year for over weight but has been named to this year's team, which will tour the West Indies in December.
On his first day at the health resort, Milburn was given three glasses of lemon-flavored hot water. Nothing else. The next day he was allowed three glasses of orange juice. And on the third night, he was served two boiled eggs and a piece of diet bread.
Each morning he takes a seaweed bath, and after that he is coated with paraffin wax. He has peeled off 16 pounds so far, but is "determined to lose two stone [28 pounds] or bust."
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