HOT STOVE: IT'S FAIR, IT'S FOUL
NATURALLY WAS INTERESTED IN ADMIRAL DANIEL GALLERY'S STORY ON RULES IN FEB. 4 ISSUE. WHILE RAISING SOME GOOD POINTS IT ALSO CONTAINS SEVERAL ERRORS. IN COLUMN ONE, LEAGUE PRESIDENTS ACT ON RULES PROTESTS, NOT COMMISSIONER. IN COLUMN THREE, SECTION ON RUNNER CRASHING PIVOTMAN AT SECOND BASE ON DOUBLE PLAY QUOTES WRONG RULE. SECTION 6.05 (M) APPLIES. IN PLAY DESCRIBED AT BOTTOM OP COLUMN THREE, BELIEVE UMPIRES COULD INVOKE POWER GIVEN THEM UNDER 9.01 (C) AND RULE DOUBLE PLAY BECAUSE OF DELIBERATE INTERFERENCE AND MAKING TRAVESTY OF GAME. IN COLUMN SIX DEALING WITH POP FOUL BALL ROLLING FAIR, STORY SAYS NO UMPIRE IN HIS RIGHT MIND WOULD CALL IT FAIR. IT IS DOUBTFUL IF ANY UMPIRE WOULD CALL IT OTHERWISE THAN FAIR BECAUSE THAT'S WHAT RULES SPECIFY.
J. G. TAYLOR SPINK
?Like any other good fan, Mr. Spink, publisher of baseball's authoritative Sporting News, is entitled to an educated opinion on the rules. On the everyday assault and battery that occurs around second base when the lead runner tries to break up a double play, section 6.05 (M) certainly fits as snugly as section 7.09 (F). On preventing a double play by fielding the ball and claiming to be hit by a batted ball, Larry Napp, American League umpire, recalls just such an ingenious oddity in an exhibition game last spring. With the bases loaded and one out, a sharp grounder was hit toward short. But Johnny Temple, the runner on second, scooped up the ball. Napp, who was calling second, could only rule Temple out as being hit by a batted ball. Would Mr. Napp rule an automatic double play if it happened again? "Certainly not," said he. "I'd be breaking the rules of the game." Mr. Spink is right in claiming that no umpire would admit to anything but a fair call on a pop foul rolling fair, but in actual play such balls are called foul again and again. Admiral Gallery should indeed have said "... protests are upheld by the league president as often as your grandmother gets a three-base hit." As the admiral did say, baseball is a complicated game.—ED.
HOT STOVE: ALL I CAN SAY
All I can say to Mr. William L. Baker of Kitzb�hel, Austria is Wilhelm, Schoendienst and Mueller for Crone, Thomson and O'Connell indeed! Your Giants haven't completely lost their minds, although the Braves would probably go out of theirs if they could make that deal.
HOT STOVE: NOT MY IDEA
In 19TH HOLE (SI, Jan. 28), William L. Baker said he was a wistful Giant fan, then proceeded to trade away everything but the bat boy.
Some of the trades I agree with. They would plug some holes. But trading Antonelli and getting Haddix to replace him is almost as bad as trading Mays for Frank Lane. O'Connell replacing Schoendienst would be funny if it were not so silly.
I am not a wistful Giant fan. I'm an optimistic one, just as long as they don't trade the best left-handed pitcher and the best second baseman in the league.
HOT STOVE: A GOOD MOVE FORWARD
I want to see any team in the league win the pennant except the Yankees. So in hopes of strengthening the leading contenders, I suggest that the Indians give up Carrasquel, Hegan and Busby to the Red Sox for Klaus, Stephens and Daley. Carrasquel could fill the hole at short for the Red Sox while Busby and Hegan would give them experienced depth. For the Indians Klaus could help at short and third and Stephens might be able to start in center field.
HOT STOVE: REASONABLE MAN
I am thoroughly disgusted with people who dream up fantastic trades, so I am going to spell out a reasonable order of finish in the AL:
1. Mickey Mantle.
2. Detroit ( Frank Lary will have a good first half and a good second half).
3. Chicago (Minoso will spark).
4. Boston (The absence of a southpaw pitcher will cost them a good year).
5. Cleveland (No hitting).
7. Washington (No outfield—no hitting, which will mean a move to Los Angeles).
8. Kansas City (No pitching and no hitting. No team).
PENN STORY: THE LONELIEST MAN
Joel Sayre's article Pigskin at Penn: A Real-Life Drama (SI, Jan. 28) was extremely gratifying.