HERE COMES THE ROADRUNNER
It won't be either a tortoise or a hare that captures the batting crown (Aesop Is the Official Scorer, July 26)—but a road-runner. Speedster Ralph Garr of the Atlanta Braves, the major league's next .400 hitter, will win in a walkaway. Beep! Beep!, Joe and Willie.
PAUL L. FLECK
I think by season's end, Mark Mulvoy will think of Glenn Beckert of the Chicago Cubs as more than a "long shot" for the National League batting title. How many times does Joe Torre sacrifice or hit behind a hitter as Beckert does? Glenn has to give up a few points on his average by hitting second in the Cubs' lineup.
WATCH OUT FOR RICO
In your brief list of noteworthy comebacks (SCORECARD, July 26), you failed to include Rico Carty. After missing the entire 1968 season because of tuberculosis, he came back in 1969 and batted .342 to lead the Atlanta Braves to the Western Division championship in the National League and won the batting title with a .366 average last year. He has yet to play a game this season because of an injury and will have to come back again. When he does, I hope you don't overlook him again.
DISSENT IN DIXIE
In Africa Was Right on in Dixie (July 26), one part disturbed me. That was the reference to the black vs. white scoreboard that students from Malcolm X Liberation University displayed. It's a shame that many sports events today become subjects of race demonstrations. It's about time sports were looked at for their own sake. Enough of this social and political exploitation.
ELLIOTT A. BLUM
New York City
Notwithstanding their travel and severely packed competitive schedule, the U.S. distance men were adversely affected by the North Carolina heat and humidity during the recent Pan Africa-U.S. track and field meet at Durham. A disproportionately large number of our athletes live, train and often race in drier or cooler climes.
Just as research before, during and after the Mexico City Games demonstrated the value of training at an altitude equivalent to the altitude of competition, so the U.S. military research complex has for years been accruing an impressive array of information on the debilitating effects of heat and humidity during strenuous activity. It may be well for athletes whose events require an excess of two minutes of continuous effort to recognize the heat-and-humidity factor as of import equal to that of altitude.
RICHARD S. MACH
The crowd at the Pan Africa-U.S. meet, which I attended, was not predominantly black, although Peter Carry gave the impression that the black and white citizens could not support a spectacle of this nature together. They most certainly did, and the entire community is a lot better because of it.
The U.S. women performed brilliantly, but there was no mention of this or their score. Evidently the writer was more interested in the bongo drums in the stands than in giving comprehensive coverage to a major sporting event.
CHARLES B. STANLEY
In SCORECARD (July 26) you castigate the NAACP for planning to stage protests at sporting events in which South African players compete. You say that South African athletes are not necessarily representatives of apartheid, just as our athletes are not representatives of the Ku Klux Klan. This assumption is faulty, however, because apartheid is South Africa's national policy, whereas the Klan is only a private organization. This is an important distinction, which you should not try to minimize.
TERRY MICHAEL BANKS
Pity those poor Cleveland Indian fans. Ken Harrelson turns in his glove for a golf stick. Sam McDowell decides he'd rather watch the Indians on TV than go out to the ball park. Manager Al Dark is blamed for the team's sorry state and is fired. No wonder the fans latch onto a colorful but relatively insignificant ballplayer named Gomer Hodge (Gomer Is Tops in the Tepee, July 26).