Here we have two factions raging mightily at each other over who should be allowed the pleasure of killing shellfish—sport and commercial fishermen or sea otters—while the real victims of this continuing slaughter seem to be getting no relief. Where, oh, where are the friends of the abalone?
PITCHES FOR PALMER—AND DEFORD
The quality of Frank Deford's article about Jim Palmer (In a Strike Zone of His Own, July 26) matches the quality of the man. Palmer is a throwback to a breed of individualistic athletes that will become extinct with his departure from baseball. He is in the same class as the DiMaggios, Babe Ruth and Dizzy Dean. So let the Messersmiths, Catfishes and all the other prima donnas with their fat salaries take a hard look. Palmer is a superstar, something they can only pretend to be.
NICHOLAS C. FIORE
The story on Jim Palmer was another example of why SI is in a "zone of its own." If Frank Deford ever became unhappy with his salary and "wrote out his option," I'm sure he'd be the Catfish Hunter of journalism.
And if the time ever comes when Palmer is not getting what he is worth from the Oriole management, the people of Baltimore would be wise to pick up the tab.
ALL IN THE FAMILY
In the article on Joan Joyce (She's Still Wonder Woman, July 26) Joe Jares stated that Royal Beaird, manager of the Southern California Gems of the Women's Professional Softball Association, had been fired by me. This is incorrect. Beaird removed himself and his daughters Rosie Black, Eileen Francabandera and Karen Beaird from the team. The action came after I exercised my prerogative as an owner in making some organizational changes in the front office.
I also want to make it clear that I think Rosie Black is one of the top Softball pitchers in the world and a super human being. I am sorry she and her sisters decided to leave the Gems.
DENNIS A. MURPHY
International Women's Professional
DANDY RANDY (CONT.)
Reading your article on Randy Jones (Uncommon Success for a Common Man, July 12) and observing him mow down the American League in the All-Star Game sent me to the attic looking through my back issues of SI for Ted Williams' article on hitting (The Science of Hitting, July 8, 1968).
By his own admission, Ted Williams, the greatest swinger of a bat in baseball, would have hit only .250 against Jones who generally pitches to the kneecap strike zone. We hear the experts write and talk about Jones winning 30. How about 35 or 36?
If we apply Williams' theory to all National League hitters that Jones faces, they will average hitting about .190, with nearly all of the hits comprising that lowly average being singles. How do you beat him? With much difficulty and very seldom.
Jones may be the first of a new breed that could well dominate the game for years to come by the use of finesse and control with the basic aim of keeping the ball low at all times.