?It does. Baer said it of the New York Yankees' (1918-21) Ping Bodie after the 5'8", 195-pound outfielder was thrown out while trying to steal second. The humorist's exact words, according to his son Arthur Bugs Baer of New York, who read them to us the way his father wrote them, were, "His head was full of larceny, but his feet were honest." In 1936 Damon Runyon quoted Baer as saying: "I had used [the line] on ' Germany' Schaefer in Washington several years before I used it on Bodie, and it didn't seem to get much of a laugh. Its reception in New York made me realize that it makes a big difference where and when and how you say a thing—that it's a matter of what the stage people call timing." Incidentally, it was Bodie who said of his gallivanting Yankee teammate, "I room with Babe Ruth's suitcase."—ED.
Although Bay City Blues (TV/RADIO, Nov. 7) features some fine performances and reveals a basic understanding of human failings and emotions, the program is far from complete in its portrayal of minor league baseball.
Unfortunately, the general public is pretty much unaware of how many hours of hard work go into running a successful franchise. Individuals such as the general manager, the assistant general manager, the clubhouse attendant and the groundskeeper are the backbone of all minor league operations, yet they have been invisible elements in the Bay City episodes that we have seen.
Who do you think goes out and sells those outfield-fence signs and all of the program advertisements? What minds do you suppose conjure up all those unique promotional ideas to attract fans to the park? Who is it that takes care of the equipment and the uniforms? And in what magical way does the field round itself into top shape?
Bay City Blues is certainly an entertaining program, but an accurate account of minor league baseball? Hardly.
BOB KITCHEN, General Manager
JON KAUFMAN, Assistant GM
SAM CLARK, Clubhouse Manager
DAVE NASYPANY, Groundskeeper
GETTING READY FOR SARAJEVO...
Hooray for Bob Ottum's delightful story and the wonderful photographs of Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean (Just the Perfect Couple, Nov. 7). Not only was it nice to see figure skaters profiled in such a lengthy article, but it was also good to see well-deserved attention focused on the sport of ice dancing. Torvill and Dean, as well as America's own Judy Blumberg and Michael Seibert, have changed the face of ice dancing with their unique styles. They have made the sport better just by being in it.
DIANA COATE HUBBARD
Dan Levin's article on Rick McKinney and the sport of Olympic archery (On Target for the Games, Oct. 10) was most informative. However, for the readers who did not have their metric conversion tables handy, I'd like to point out that 90 meters, one of the distances over which an Olympic archer shoots, is about a yard and a half short of the length of a football field, and his arrows are aimed at an inner gold circle of about eight inches, which scores a 10. The outer gold scores a nine. It's hard work to hit so small a spot at so great a distance.
Also, my compliments for choosing McKinney as an Olympic subject. In my eyes, he is the antithesis of the so-called elite athletes who are beginning to pervade amateur sports. McKinney simply works, trains, gets it all together and then goes for the gold. Surely that's the way it should be.
Watchung Bowmen of Union County
Many thanks to William Oscar Johnson and Jerry Cooke for giving us a look at the host country for the 1984 Winter Olympic-Games (A Trip East with West, Oct. 24). During the 1980 Olympics, when I found it agonizing to watch the proceedings from my distant vantage point in front of my television set, I promised myself that I would save my money for the trip to Sarajevo. But as February approaches, I find I will once again be restricted to my living room to view the scenery, color and festivities of the Games. Thus my sincere appreciation for your article. Johnson's revealing and intriguing description and Cooke's photographs of that land made it the best vacation I've had in a long time. If I can't be there for the 15 days in February, I feel very fortunate to have gone to Yugoslavia for 15 minutes in October.
THE REV. LEE A. NEUJAHR
Zion's Evangelical Lutheran Church
Mission. S. Dak.
A professor of mine used to say that journalism is one profession in which one needs no mathematics. I am a high school math teacher, and your item in SCORECARD (NOV. 7) concerning the NCAA rule specifying that a player fielding a punt be given at least a two-yard berth by would-be tacklers made me cringe. A two-yard square—or any size square—makes no sense whatsoever. However, if my students had answered, "A circle," for the correct interpretation of the rule, that would have been incorrect, too.