The 1966 All-Star Game ends in yet another frustrating defeat for the American League and thousands of loyal American League fans must wonder why.
As I watched this game on television, I couldn't help thinking that the National League's starting lineup was presenting, position for position, the top nine men in their league but that the American League was not.
Where, for instance, was John (Boog) Powell, the man who, in my opinion, will be chosen the American League's most valuable player at season's end? He wasn't even in St. Louis, though he is most certainly the league's outstanding first baseman.
And why was Dick McAuliffe at short and leading off against the game's best left-handed pitcher? Dick's own American League manager sometimes benches him against average left-handers. He has trouble hitting left-handed pitching.
Then again why was the light-hitting Bobby Knoop at second base? Great fielder that he is, he isn't in the same class as Bobby Richardson as an all-round second baseman.
Second guessing, as I am well aware, is frowned up n, but I still feel that an early-inning base hit by a John Powell could have changed the entire complexion of this so-called dream game and led to an American League victory.
So why, oh why, doesn't the American League make some effort to field its best team at All-Star time?
WILLIAM T. WELCH
Recently I sent you an ill-tempered letter in criticism of your apparent indifference to four deaths in unlimited hydroplane racing. I am now sorry that I wrote that letter, and I apologize for it, because I find the subject very properly covered in your SCORLCARD department of July 18.
Supplementing your editorial remarks I can only comment that in recent years the unlimiteds have reached their absolute speed limit. They skim the water with no frictional wetted surface except the tips of the stabilizing fins and lower half of the propeller. In the air man has been able to fly faster than the speed of sound and so pass the compression barrier. But, unlike air, water is not compressible so the unlimited hydros find themselves quite literally with no place to go.
Unlimited hydroplane racing has in recent years tended to become less and less an amateur sport, as so many of the entries now have commercial sponsors and professional drivers. The same thing happened to automobile racing.
It reminds one of the spectacles of the Roman gladiators or, as you say, of Russian roulette.
R. H. MITTEN
It would be interesting to know who wrote those knowledgeable comments in the SCORECARD "Limit the Unlimiteds." It was obvious even to the casual reader that the writer had no idea whatsoever of the subject on which he was expounding so eloquently. He suggested that, perhaps, rules be imposed, regarding fuel, power, design and driver qualifications. Apparently, however, he didn't even bother to inquire beforehand if there were any existing regulations, because if he had he would have found very stringent rules and the names of individuals whose job it is to see that they are enforced. In fact, they cover not only all of the items mentioned by your writer but hundreds of other items as well.
•For the views of a man who has a pretty good grasp of the subject (he practically invented the sport), see page 38.—ED.
CUT AND DRIED
In your July 18 issue (How can Black Maxers lose?) you stated that on July 5, 1965 Woody Fryman was "picking tobacco and pushing a plow." I think you are trying to make a bunch of cotton pickers of us hardworking tobacco farmers. Burley tobacco is harvested in the fall, not in the middle of summer, and is never "picked." It is cut, dried and stripped.
I have just finished reading the second half of Babes in the Woods (July 11 & 18) and would like to comment that it is a superb job. My sincere congratulations to you and to Miss La Fontaine for a very perceptive and revealing article.
The article mentions that there is a total of 19 Outward Bound Schools. I think your readers would be particularly interested in knowing that there are already four American Schools for boys—in Colorado. Minnesota, Maine and Oregon—and a fifth will open next April in North Carolina. Each school uses its unique environment to attain the same objectives described by Miss La Fontaine. Any inquiries should be directed to Outward Bound, Inc., Andover, Mass. 01810.
Thank you for bringing the Outward Bound story to your readers in such an effective way.
JOSHUA L. MINER, III
President, Outward Bound, Inc.
In your July 18 issue, Barbara La Fontaine describes a test of what she calls "survival," in which a group of girls are left in the woods for three days. Each testee was allowed fishhooks and line, four matches, a tin can and some Band-Aids.
One girl ate some berries, another a couple of frogs and a third a dozen ants. None of them caught any fish, and there is an implication that none of them tried very hard. What they really did was simply sit out the three days, patiently waiting to be picked up.
This is not survival. It is fasting, and it might just as well be done at home. What in the world was the experiment supposed to prove? Certainly not that those girls could stay alive in the woods without help. It proved exactly the opposite. They meekly sat and starved.
Whatever happened to the Camp Fire Girls? They were doing better than that back in the '20s.
DIGBY BUTLER WHITMAN
What a witty, tender and really understanding article Barbara La Fontaine has written about Outward Bound. I know something about the subject because I was director of the first OB school in this country at Marble, Colo.
I remember one boy from Kansas City who came face to face with the reality of the wilderness, up above Lead King Basin one night on his solo survival expedition. While trying to sleep he heard mysterious chittering and chipping sounds that went on for hours in the darkness until, at 2:30 a.m., the tree on which a beaver had been gnawing fell across his lean-to.
"I will never forget that moment the rest of my life," the boy said later. I believe him.
WILLIAM MCK. CHAPMAN
Since your Barbara La Fontaine herself admits to 34 years (Babes in the Woods, July 11), perhaps it is not too ungallant of me to notice her age. In any case, I congratulate her not only for submitting that settled maturity to ordeals that would stagger many a younger girl but for writing about the experience with such grace and sensitivity as well.
My hat is off to Author Barbara La Fontaine and the girls who took part in the Outward Bound program. I found the article very enjoyable, and I am glad to see that some girls have the courage to "gut it out" on adventures like this.
St. Bonifacius, Minn.
Having spent a day at the Outward Bound Sea School in Aberdovey, Merioneth, Wales, I was a little surprised to read in your July 11 issue that Aberdovey had moved to Scotland. But I daresay the move was inadvertent. The present warden of the school, Captain J. F. Fuller, M.B.E., hosted a group of us overseas information officers around the school, and we were able to see at first hand many of the fascinating activities that the boys participate in.
It may be of interest to your readers to know that only five or six miles away from the boys' school at Aberdovey there is an Outward Bound girls' school in Towyn, Wales.
The concept of Outward Bound training is a fascinating one, and I think that many of your readers will agree that the spread of this concept would be of great help in character-building amongst our youth.
D. COLIN SELLEY
I notice that we share the same opinion concerning Mr. Leahy's United States Football League (SCORECARD June 11). However, there is another professional football league which deserves your attention. I am referring to the recently established Continental Football League.
This league becomes truly continental in nature by being comprised of 10 teams with franchises ranging from Toronto and Montreal in Canada to Orlando in Florida. This gives it an international flavor which cannot be found in the AFL or NFL. Since the recent merger, we who follow the fortunes of the CFL feel that our league is now the second major league of football and is deserving of recognition as such. Certainly our brand of football is equal to that of the AFL in its formative years, and it should be covered as well as was the AFL in its youth.
LEWIS H. BRIDGES JR.