C. D. BATCHELOR
For drama, baseball—the best spectator sport. Victory or defeat may hinge on the last out. For beauty, tennis—graceful men (sometimes) and beautiful women (often) play on nearly equal terms. And for good measure, the tennis audience is handsomest. It even smells good.
This is an article from the July 16, 1956 issue
The drama and beauty of men in competition, from the graceful soaring of the pole vaulter to the emotionalism of a game-winning field goal. For me, the double play in baseball has just about everything the artist can hope to express—drama, beauty and simplicity of line for his drawings.
Stan Musial's coil stance and his unraveling as he makes his swing is beauty in motion. Enos Slaughter's dramatic sprint from first base all the way home on Harry Walker's single to win the 1946 World Series is tops in drama, matched only by a great boxing match for the championship.
Providence Journal and Evening Bulletin
For beauty, I'll take Red Rolfe fielding a bunt or Warren Spahn fogging them in. For drama, any World Series, especially the 1952 Series. But for a combination, give me Ted Williams up at the plate, wringing that bat, with runners on and the Red Sox a couple of runs behind.
Baseball is a nine-act show replete with adlib plays and thrilling climaxes. Natural beauty surrounds the player at every golf course. Physical beauty is on view in tennis and track. For sheer drama—Babe Didrikson's inspirational "handsome is as handsome does."
I see beauty in Phil Rizzuto ballet dancing through a double play, in watching my English setter flush a pheasant. Drama? Bobby Thomson's pennant-winning home run, Ben Hogan's comeback after a tragic accident, Babe Didrikson's fight for health, the last-second pass that wins a game.
Newspaper Enterprise Association
Drama? An insignificant game in Sacramento. Score tied, bases loaded, none out. The veteran pitcher threw three balls. One more and he was through—for good. Marv Grissom blazed three strikes, struck out the side. Beauty? Can't shake my first dazzling image of Yankee Stadium.
Speedy response to sudden situations, a team's strategy to better an opponent, unpredictable breaks of the game that cancel an advantage, all make sports a theater for tense drama. And what is beauty if not the ordered exercise of vitality and resource to reach a goal? Sports have it.
Comic Strip Productions
Each artist reads his own poetry into an athlete's motion. Some react to muscular perfection, others to the beauty of sports or the drama of the contest. Throughout the history of art, artists have been unanimous in their admiration of the symmetry and power of the athlete.
A 3-2 count, two outs and the runners on the go—that's drama! As for beauty, I'm sold on the combination of a ball game (Little League or major) and a sunny afternoon. These intangibles of drama and beauty provide for most of us an escape from the dreary realities of H-bombs and bolsheviks.
The drama in the split second of a knockout punch—the beauty in a Thoroughbred charging down the stretch—the rhythmic grace of all competitive athletes—provide a never-ending source of designs for the sports cartoonist, who garnishes the dish with the salt of humor when possible.
Beauty? There is true beauty in sports because all art, like sport, is basically flow of line in motion. Drama? Even a Hollywood scriptwriter would have rejected as implausible Jack Fleck's finish in the National Open or the final-second field goal which won the last Rose Bowl game.
What is the appeal of the sports car and what is its future in American life?