April 17, 2000
April 17, 2000

Table of Contents
April 17, 2000

Golf Plus


Did someone forget to tell Frank Thomas that baseball is a team
--COREY STILL, Wahpeton, N.Dak.

This is an article from the April 17, 2000 issue

Nobody's Neutral Here

So Frank Thomas is charmless (Hurtin', March 13). So what? To
say that it's Thomas's fault that he's not a Chicago civic
treasure or a marketing powerhouse assumes unfairly that he is
supposed to be these things. He's paid to hit baseballs, and
until White Sox owner Jerry Reinsdorf gutted a fine team, Thomas
hit them everywhere.

Congratulations to William Nack for painting an all-too-familiar
picture of today's superstar athlete: arrogant, self-centered
and out of touch with reality. The picture of Thomas's house
offers the perfect metaphor for Thomas himself: oversized,
unnecessary and too expensive.
KEN PETERSON, Mentor, Ohio

You devoted the cover and 11 pages to a player who doesn't want
to play first base and has built himself a house that looks like
an office building. Incredible!
PETE CLARK, Pompey, N.Y.

Thomas has a point about American League pitchers being more
willing to come inside because they don't have to worry about
batting for themselves. Of course, if he played in the National
League, he couldn't spend 80% of the game sitting in front of
his locker. National League players must field a position. That
means hitting with the cuts, scrapes, bruises and injured hands
that are often the result of being complete ballplayers.

I only hope that Thomas's record company is able to produce more
hits than he will, given that music will probably be his sole
source of income soon.

It's a shame that Thomas should have to endure the crucifixion
of his character and skills. He is one of the best players ever
to don a White Sox uniform. Chicago's treatment of this
superstar is a prime example of why the Cubs and the Sox are
mired in mediocrity and won't win a World Series for another
hundred years--if ever.
JIMMIE STAGGS, Lubbock, Texas

Signed and Delivered

In your March 13 SCORECARD item on Vince Carter you state, "on
hold are several deals that have yet to be sealed, including
pending endorsement contracts with Fleer and EA Sports." Your
information concerning Fleer trading cards is incorrect. Vince
Carter has entered into a new five-year exclusive trading card,
memorabilia and autograph agreement with Fleer.
Fleer Trading Cards
Mount Laurel, N.J.

Double Standard?

You were right in criticizing the boorish behavior by Notre Dame
students at several basketball games (SCORECARD, March 13).
Unfortunately, in the same issue you published a photograph of
Duke students holding up "mug shots" of North Carolina's Ed Cota
that alluded to Cota's arrest last fall on misdemeanor assault
charges (INSIDE THE WEEK IN SPORTS). This demonstration at Duke
seemed just as uncalled for as those at Notre Dame aimed at
Connecticut's Khalid El-Amin and Jake Voskuhl. Cota's arrest and
the Duke crowd's attack based on that incident did not need to
be publicized in your magazine as an amusing distraction.
CHRIS NEWBURY, Arlington, Va.

The Joy of Jody

Everything that Seth Davis wrote about referee Jody Silvester
and the high level of respect that he has earned is true (INSIDE
COLLEGE BASKETBALL, March 13). However, Davis missed an
attribute that sets Silvester apart from other basketball
officials working today: He has fun refereeing a game. This
attitude is unusual and, with Jody's retirement, may become
extinct. Jody has remained a breath of fresh air in a game that
has become too much of a business.
RON JOHNSON, Madison, Wis.

Long Memory

Jackie MacMullan's article on the Celtics (INSIDE THE NBA, March
13) answers a question she asked at the start of the season
(Scouting Reports, Nov. 1). The headline on her preseason
evaluation of the Celtics said, "Rick Pitino says his team will
make noise, but will it just be the sound of bickering?" I do
believe MacMullan has pinned the tail on the donkey.
BILL POMEROY, Plymouth, N.H.


Deja Vu All Over Again

Even more remarkable than the similarity in the shooting forms
displayed by Scott May (right, Catching Up With..., March 6) and
A.J. Guyton (left, Inside College Basketball, March 6) is that
except for the nod to today's baggier shorts, both players are
wearing what seem to be identical Indiana uniforms, despite a
span of 24 years. Same coach too. How many schools can claim that?
ART STERN, Arlington, Va.