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EVENTS & DISCOVERIES
September 10, 1956
JIM FINNEGAN ON GOLF, WAS THE LADY HEAVYWEIGHT A BIT LIGHT-FINGERED?, HITTERS, SPITTERS AND LEW BURDETTE, OKLAHOMAN WITH EVERYTHIN' GOING HIS WAY, ARAGON'S ART
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September 10, 1956

Events & Discoveries

JIM FINNEGAN ON GOLF, WAS THE LADY HEAVYWEIGHT A BIT LIGHT-FINGERED?, HITTERS, SPITTERS AND LEW BURDETTE, OKLAHOMAN WITH EVERYTHIN' GOING HIS WAY, ARAGON'S ART

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But does he or doesn't he? One reflection: If Lew does, and gets caught at it, Milwaukee will lose him for a 10-day suspension in the windup of the pennant race.

THE GOLDEN AGE OF 24

For Mickey mantle of the New York Yankees it was a busy and wonderful time. On Wednesday he hit No. 46 and drove in the winning run against Kansas City; on Friday came No. 47, with the President looking on (see page 28). In between, on Thursday, he romped and beamed through a square dance on Arthur Murray's TV show and expertly cast a plug for I Love Mickey, a song which is two weeks old and selling well. It was Mantle's fourth nonbaseball TV appearance of the season. Together with filmed commercials (for Viceroys, Lifebuoy soap, Charles Antell Hair Conditioner and Batter Up pancake mix) they have netted him roughly $15,000. But that's only the beginning.

On October 3, which happens to be opening day for the World Series, the Kraft Television Theatre will produce Mickey's life story. A 25-year-old actor, named James Olson, who bears a dim resemblance to Mantle, has been found and put to work observing the man he is to portray. But Mickey himself, and probably some of his family, will appear on the show too, in flashbacks.

The script is unfinished, because Mantle is still writing it, adding a detail or two every time he comes up to bat. If he breaks Ruth's record and drives in the pennant-winning run, so much the better for dramatic impact. If he doesn't, the Kraft people feel they can still find an affirmative ending for the story. As biographee, scriptwriter and Exhibit A, Mantle will collect (again roughly) another $15,000.

Then there are record royalties. I Love Mickey is a rock 'n' roll number. Since Mantle's voice is heard on it briefly he will share in the profits. For those who can't stand rock 'n' roll, there is The Mighty Mickey Mantle , which has been described as a "cowboy-type item." Its hero doesn't perform in it and will get no income from it. Both songs are expected to spurt or slump on sales charts in perfect time to Mickey's hitting. I Love Mickey may therefore bring in $10,000 more.

Finally, there is Mantle's $30,000 salary as a Yankee.

The total is $70,000. An endorsement or two, a few more television appearances and 13 home runs will put the 24-year-old Oklahoma farm boy in the same income bracket as that other object of the nation's daily regard, the President of the United States.

ART THE GREAT

As a ranking prizefighter, California's Art Aragon is only No. 5 in the welterweight lists. He never has been—and probably never will be—champion. He is constitutionally unable to escape a left jab. He throws punches with the hopeless fervor of a man swatting a fly with a Kleenex. He is one of the handsomest fighters in the ring—but only when the fight starts. When it ends he usually looks like something hanging off the cornice of a French cathedral. Most of his energies in the ring are devoted to hitching up his pants to keep them from falling off, even though he admitted, when asked if they had ever gone down, "Only when I went with them."

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