The positions Johnny Bench has asked to try out for are already held down by All-Stars or potential All-Stars. The best thing that could happen to Bench would be a trade to an American League club. Then he could be a designated hitter and catch no games. Between at bats, he could talk about his golf game, his television appearances and his megabucks salary.
TALKING IT UP (CONT.)
Jack McCallum's piece on baseball chatter (Chatter, March 16) was fun, especially because it presented me with an opportunity to exorcise an ancient peeve. I always hated the mindless jabbering that was occasionally required of me as a schoolboy player. Neither the sullen-faced kids, mechanically droning the familiar jabberwocky, nor the aging tyrant who was insisting on it, realized that it was doing more damage to the psyches of the chatterers than to those of the chatterees. In fact, as a batter, I found it actually useful: the rising chorus of "Hum babe" culminating in the invariable "Swing batter!" helped to focus my concentration on the pitch.
As a football fan who would like to see the Super Bowl converted back to a championship game played on the home field of the finalist with the best record, regardless of weather conditions, I take strong exception to Tex Schramm's suggestion (SCORECARD, March 30) that the conference championship games be moved to neutral, warm-weather sites. Television has already taken much of the game away from the fan who goes out to the stadium in all weather year after year. This would be the final insult.
One of the main problems with the Super Bowl, which often is dull, is that it is played before a neutral crowd instead of an enthusiastic home crowd.
LESLEY K. TILLIER
The spirit and magnetism of Mickey Thompson were vividly portrayed by Bob Ottum in his article Is There Life After Hot-Rodding? (March 2). What Ottum didn't tell your readers, however, is that besides the "go for broke" Thompson there is also a very considerate and caring Thompson.
For 13 years the Alhambra City High School District has recognized the accomplishments of auto shop students who have exhibited outstanding abilities. The Industry Education Council and the Alhambra/San Gabriel Car Dealers' Association annually sponsor an Automotive Technicians' Award Banquet. The man providing the scholarships that are handed out at the dinner and the evening's entertainment is Thompson.
Mickey wanted to give something back to his alma mater, and rewarding those young people who have excelled in automotive classes is his way of sharing his success with others. His message—"Work hard and never quit"—is a source of inspiration to these students.
Member, Board of Education
Alhambra City Schools
SHE HIT THE SPOT
Your editorial comment in 19TH HOLE (March 16) concerning Carolyn Finneran neglected to mention that in her undergraduate days at Cornell the then Carolyn Evans was a superb springboard diver. As a former Cornell diver, I distinctly remember the times she worked out with the men's team in our very limited facilities, the birdbath of a swimming pool in the Old Armory. I also recall that she was the only woman diver ever to perform a "spotter."
ANDR� S. CAPI, M.D.
Pompano Beach, Fla.
?Spotter, for those who may not know, is a tumbling term that refers to a backward or forward somersault that begins and ends on one spot. In this case, the diver lands on the board before diving.—ED.
In "They Said It" (SCORECARD, March 16) Red Sox Pitcher Bob Stanley is quoted as saying of his children, whose names are Kyle and Kristin, "One more [K] and we'll have the inning over on strikeouts." I know someone who can go him one better. When former major league Outfielder Albie Pearson started a family, he wanted to "hit home runs" by having sons. He decided any daughters he had would be given names beginning with K, for strikeouts. After his at bats were over, his career average stood at .000 for Kim, Karee, Kandi, Kelli and Kristian.