"We did think about putting big-name players' signatures on our bats, but just about everybody has been signed. We signed Gene Verble, but he ended up back down here with Chattanooga. We signed a Fred Hatfield and a Charley Maxwell. They went up to the big show, but to tell you the truth I've lost track of them. The way we figure it, nothing you can say will make a bat better. Baseball will be here a long time, and sooner or later, players will be using our bats."
There is reason for Mr. Greer's unruffled assurance. Hanna is now on both sides of the red-hot American League pennant race—a letter from Cleveland arrived a fortnight ago at their converted railroad depot. "By way of introducing myself," it began, "I am Al Rosen, currently of the Cleveland Indians . . ." Having noticed his Yankee rival Hank Bauer slapping grandly at the ball with a Hanna bat, fence-busting Infielder Rosen (lately in a horrible slump and dazedly searching for the cure) ordered half a dozen.
"I marked a 'triple red-rush' on his order," says Mr. Greer. "Maybe ship them out Thursday. Friday's no good. You can't send Al Rosen bats on Friday the 13th. Saturday we're all out fishing, golf, or somewhere. So they might not get off until Monday."
NOT CONTENT with owning a pre-served-egg-and-dried-milk factory in Istanbul, a city where most of the citizenry take their eggs direct from the shell and their milk direct from the bottle with no intervening hanky pank, Murat Gular, a Turk of 26 last week established a new kind of swimming record—achieved the doubtful distinction of swimming across the English Channel without officially leaving the French shore.
Murat waded into the water at Cape Gris Nez at 7:40 one morning, attired in the usual grease and goggles, and accompanied by the usual fishing boat. When darkness fell, however, he was still chugging along far from shore. Tides and a thunderstorm pushed him off course. Finally, at 12:30 the next morning, after 16 hours and 50 minutes in the water, he staggered out of the Channel in rain and darkness to the rocks of South Foreland, near St. Margaret's Bay, Kent. But not a soul was in sight. Nobody hove into sight, either, although the crew of the fishing boat engaged in frantic light flashing. In the end, to keep from freezing to death, Murat swam back to the vessel and was taken back to France.
The next day, backed by a French companion, one M. Lovergne, the crew of the boat and a young Sandhurst cadet who went along for the ride, Murat announced that he was the first Turk ever to swim the big ditch. The London Daily Mail agreed that he had crossed. Something called the International Long Distance Swimming Federation agreed that there was no reason to doubt his tale. Even the Channel Swimming Association, governing body of the sport in Britain, seemed embarrassed. But it insisted that a man who crosses the Channel without being observed by three neutral witnesses has never crossed at all.