But when baseball executives were presented with this evidence—incontrovertible by any measure—they weren't moved. Bowie Kuhn, the commissioner, essentially said the statute of limitations had lapsed. Others were inclined to correct the error but were disinclined to rewrite the record book and coronate new winners in statistical categories. So it is that according to some references, Lajoie had the higher average that year, yet Cobb was the winner of the batting title.
In makes for a fun parlor game to speculate how Lajoie and Cobb would have reacted to these revelations. When Lajoie found out that he and Cobb were both getting a new Chalmers, he resisted at first, thinking he had won outright. According to a nephew it wasn't until his wife prevailed on him that he accepted the car, somewhat grudgingly. Later he supposedly said with a wink, "I've always understood that the automobile I got ran a lot better than the one they gave to Ty."
As for Cobb, the affair showed a measured dimension to his personality that had seldom been in evidence. When news of the attempted bribe broke, there was ample opportunity for Cobb to lash out, but his public comments were tempered. Had he been deprived of the car, one suspects, he would simply have committed himself to winning one the following season. Not that he wasn't happy with his spoils. As he told writers at spring training the following year, in the off-season he would sometimes drive by his teammates in Detroit, the Tigers who had prematurely congratulated Lajoie. Cobb wouldn't say a word. "I just honk the horn of my new car at them."