I doubt if we will get any definitive answers on this side of the veil, but I consider Bill Surface to be presenting, at last and at least, the right questions. I thank you all.
BARRY N. MALZBERG
As a longtime New York Yankee fan, I found E. M. Swift's article Rose Might Not Be Red Anymore (Nov. 6) very interesting. Certainly, Pete Rose is a great player and has done a lot for baseball, but at 37 how many more great seasons does he have?
As for Rose's lack of enthusiasm at the thought of playing with the Yankees, is it any wonder? Could Rose take a job away from Roy White or Lou Piniella in left, or from Chris Chambliss at first? I doubt very much that he could replace Reggie Jackson as a designated hitter. As for third base, maybe George Steinbrenner would sign Rose to carry Graig Nettles' glove out to him at the start of each inning! No, the Yankees don't need Rose, and I wonder how many other clubs really need him?
Granted, Pete Rose is one of the finest baseball players of our time, but his avarice fills us with utter disgust. His attitude exemplifies the selfish and unsportsmanlike conduct that seems so predominant in sports today. Given Rose's proclivity for money in large sums, we feel only George Steinbrenner can save him. Steinbrenner has the financial means to obtain Rose, and Rose would add an invaluable link to that team of prima donnas known as the Yankees.
PETER R. KENDRICK
PATRICK J. SHANAHAN
I sincerely hope Rose will not "be Red anymore," especially if he is thinking of wearing a Phillies uniform next year. It was bad enough to see him pictured in your article with a Phillies cap on his big head.
New York City
Just once I wish some superstar professional athlete, with tons of publicity and national exposure, would respond to an owner's overly generous contract offer by saying, "No thanks. The salary I received last year was more than enough for me to provide my family with comfort and the few luxuries they asked for. A cost of living increase would be plenty." Alas, what a crazy dream!
I urge Cincinnati not to give in to Pete Rose. In fact, it would be great if no team offered Rose the extraordinary amounts of money that he expects. Then maybe he and other "superstars" will get the message that the sky is not the limit.
We, the staff of St. Anthony's Youth Center in Easton, Pa., the Home of Larry Holmes, wish to congratulate Pat Putnam on a fine article on our champion (Don't Hate 'Em, Just Hit 'Em, Nov. 6). In our opinion, the story revealed the truth. It is common for even a passing acquaintance to say that Larry is a beautiful person, and we can verify that sentiment from our day-to-day experiences with him. Never let it be said that Holmes is a spoiled athlete, for nothing could be further from the truth. The setbacks, the long days of training at St. Anthony's during an uphill battle and a lack of formidable opponents couldn't stop Larry from pursuing his goal. We all knew he would one day be the heavyweight champion. With that in mind, you can imagine the bedlam in Easton on the night of June 9 when he beat Ken Norton.
Fans unfamiliar with Larry might be interested to know that he proves his loyalty to his hometown by maintaining his "between-fights" training facility at St. Anthony's—the place where it all began.
I think it's about time Dan Jenkins woke up (Starr Has a New Bunch of Stars, Nov. 6). Upon reading a line like the one about Chester Marcol's field goal enabling Bart Stan's "new and improved team to escape the humility of a loss to Tampa Bay," one has to wonder where Jenkins has been the last nine weeks. The Buccaneers have a respectable 4-5 record at this writing, with victories over playoff contenders Minnesota and Atlanta. The Bucs are no longer the expansion patsies of two years ago, and of their five losses, none has been lopsided. The Bucs' stingy defense, led by Lee Roy Selmon, held Walter Payton to 34 yards on 15 carries a couple of weeks ago.
Staten Island, N.Y.