Kudos to Roy Terrell for his POINT AFTER on sports' greatest moments (Sept. 23). I am 20, and when a survey handed out at a recent ball game asked about baseball's greatest moments, my college-age friends argued for Kirk Gibson's shot to win Game 1 of the 1988 World Series. While that's the most dramatic home run I've seen, Bill Mazeroski's seventh-game homer to win the '60 Series must have been even better. I wish I had been there.
It is interesting to note that all of the great sporting events mentioned by Terrell took place after he was born. I will never forget Carlton Fisk's home run in the sixth game of the '75 Series, because I watched it. Maybe if I had seen Maz's shot, I would have been similarly struck by it.
The Giants Win the Pennant!
I read with great pleasure Ron Fimrite's Side by Side (Sept. 16). The Miracle at Coogan's Bluff happened 16 years before I was born, but even so I get emotional whenever I read about it. The incredible joy of Bobby Thomson and the Giants and the dejection of Ralph Branca and the Dodgers epitomize why baseball is such a wonderful game. The story of the 1951 New York Giants is a classic that needs retelling periodically so that all generations of baseball fans can know and enjoy it. Baseball may never again have such a dramatic comeback and climactic finish to a pennant race. Thank you for reminding us of this great game.
MICHAEL F. VOGEL
Buffalo Grove, Ill.
Every year you have three or four articles that, by themselves, make SI required reading. Side by Side is such an article. It is refreshing to read about a time in our national pastime when managers coached from third base and balls hit up the alley didn't bounce off artificial turf and over the wall for a ground-rule double.
BRUCE D. BERNHOLD
October 13, 1991
In the early '60s I was introduced to Bobby Thomson, a newly hired salesman at the paper-products company where I was employed. As we worked together, I was struck by the feeling that Bobby never thought of playing baseball as earning a living. For him, securing a sales position at a leading company was an achievement of lasting value. He was aware that his accomplishments on the playing field may have opened a door or two, but he was always humble about his famous home run. What came through was that in business, as in baseball, Bobby would not let you down.
BRADLEY M. JACOBS
I enjoyed Ron Fimrite's article, but am puzzled by one fact. Why were only "34,230 paying spectators, some 20,000 short of capacity" at the Polo Grounds if the city was all abuzz about the playoffs?
Downers Grove, Ill.
•Because no one knew the playoff games would be necessary until the day before they started, there were no advance ticket sales. The first game was held on Monday, Oct. 1, and Game 3 was played on Oct. 3, a gloomy Wednesday afternoon, the day before the World Series would start. New Yorkers already knew it would be a subway series; they just didn't know whether the Yankees would be facing the Giants or the Dodgers.—ED.
From what I've heard, there are as many stories about what happened to Thomson's home run ball as there were people in the stands that day. What did happen to it?
Mountlake Terrace, Wash.
•Thomson says, "When I saw it disappear—well, that was the last time I saw it for sure. The next day when I came in for our game against the Yankees, I met a guy who told me that he had the ball and that he would be glad to give it to me if I could get him two tickets to the game. When I told Eddie Logan, our clubhouse man, that I needed two tickets to get my ball, he laughed and led me to my locker, where there must have been eight or 10 balls—each supposedly the one.
"That winter I received several letters from people saying that they had the ball, and one fellow even enclosed his ticket stub, but how could I know for sure if any of those balls really was my ball? So, in the end, I just forgot about it. I got my bat, though."—ED.
Letters to SPORTS ILLUSTRATED should include the name, address and home telephone number of the writer and should be addressed to The Editor, SPORTS ILLUSTRATED, Time & Life Building, Rockefeller Center, New York, N.Y. 10020-1393.