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Just wanted to give you my recollections of Ted Williams. In 1940 when I was eleven years old, I wrote to Ted W. and asked him for an autographed picture. In a very short time I received a PERSONALLY autographed picture of my idol. It was pinned up on my bedroom wall for years--until I left for college. Our house was sold and where the picture of my idol went, I have no idea.

In 1951 I was inducted into the Army. In 1950 I had signed a contract with the NY
Yankees and had played one season in their farm system before being drafted by Uncle Sam. While stationed at Ft. Ord, Calif. I played baseball on the post team and one of my team mates was Karl Olsen. Karl had been with the Red Sox one season before being drafted into the army and he told me that of all the players on the team, Ted, more than anyone, went out of his way to make him feel comfortable and a part of the team.

The reason for me writing is to tell you that when I hear stories about Ted W. being aloof or rude, I think how little they know. He wrote to me, an eleven year old boy, to send me a picture, and he helped to make a rookie, Karl Olsen, feel welcome on the Red Sox.

Regards, Dwayne Kling

Read the whole Mudville Mag. How can you trash "Bull Durham"? Dang! Speechifying indeed. I think they should show a double header of "Bull Durham" and that Cameron Crowe movie that I can't remember the name of now, with Goldie Hawn's daughter about the Rock and Roll band. They have the same tone—riding on a bus and not doing much else except sleeping around.Anyway. I love Kevin Costner--was even privileged enough to see "Dragonfly" on the plane. Somebody give this man another movie!


To the Editors:

Oh, come on. Slamming Ken Burns is like complaining about the lack of cargo space in the new Mini Cooper: duh! Here's one to watch for: "The Bad News Bears Go to Washington", starring Jimmy Baio as the Prez,Jackie Earle Hailey as the AG, and Tony Curtis as the VP. Oh, and a cameo by Tatum O'Neal as drug czar!

Irritable Mark

Now that things are going better in Minnesota who will the other contraction teams be? Will Detroit be one of them? They haven't drawn flies since they quit on Tiger Stadium. Ernie Harwell will retire as radio broadcaster at the end of this season. This removes the one reason to listen to Tiger broadcasts.


To the editors of Mudville Magazine:

You suppose I can go after Donald Fehr for terrorism? Like Ma used to say, he’s a holy terror. And big! But really, Mudville, you have to know that it’s guys like him who not only are the ruinability of the sport, but who ask for ‘just one’ bite of your dog, and next thing you know, it’s half gone! (Trust me on that—Spencer Abrams’ the same way).

I got some good ideas myself on how to avert a strike, let me tell you. I know, I know, you’re a part of the press, too… but you don’t think I’m a dummy, right? Heck, with all this stress, it’s nice to just sit back, and listen to a good old Texas Rangers game on the old Davy Crockett radio from my childhood. Thing still works! Why, I sometimes sneak away, give a little wink to Dick, let him know he’s in charge, and I’m off listening to the Rangers get their hats handed to them once again. That’s the good thing about a losing team—it doesn’t hurt to nod off in the middle innings.

Baseball’s as much a part of this great land of ours as oil fields, cattle ranchers, naps and Republicans. Please stop writing about all the controversy—I got enough of that with all these investment scandals, and whenever I get to making a speech, the glare from the message screens keeps giving me a headache. I like Mudville, I just wish it said more about the Rangers.

George W. Bush

Payback is a .... Beautiful Thing! On Sunday, former baseball dean of discipline Frank Robinson, now the Expos manager, was tossed out of the game against the Phillies after Montreal pitcher Joey Eischen inadvertently plunked Marlon Anderson in the back with a breaking ball thrown so slow it wouldn't have gotten ticketed going through a school zone. The fact it came after a warning issued earlier in the game made it an automatic ejection for Eischen and his manager, Robinson.

Robinson was incensed and stayed on the field after he, Eischen and pitching coach Dick Pole were ejected, arguing with home plate umpire Paul Emmel for nearly 5 minutes. This is the same Frank Robinson who vowed before the season that he would not argue with umpires or get tossed out of any games because he's "seen the other side of things." Well, perhaps he only saw one side of things all that time he was handing out fines and suspensions like detention slips in a rowdy school lunchroom. What he did not see until yesterday was the outrageous incompetence of major league umpires this season, from inconsistent strike zones to being out of position on basepath calls, to complete lapses in judgment such as yesterday's ejections.

Robinson has a right to be incensed. Of course the ump blew the call. He just tossed him because that is the letter of the law after a warning has been issued (and the warning was issued on a Carlos Silva inside pitch to Brad Wilkerson the inning before... it wasn't even a hit batter!)

But angry or not, perhaps Robinson now truly sees both sides of the issue. Baseball needs to get rid of many of these short-fuse, thin-skinned, incompetent umpires who wouldn't know a strike zone from the twilight zone.

Phils manager Larry Bowa, himself often the victim of quick umpire thumbs and fines and suspensions, summed it up: "I would like to see ... what kind of fine he [Robinson] gets. I'm really looking forward to that more than anything."


To the Editor of Mudville magazine:

I've never thrown a Beanball in my life! Who do you think you are, associating my name with such an uncouth sport at Beanball! You otta be ashamed.

Alan Arkin (aka "Bean")

Nice brief bit on Ted.

It was always true that, though he was friendly with several Presidents, henever sought out celebrity and preferred hanging out with people who weren’timpressed with him – barbers, policemen, fishing guides and the like.

I could go on and on, but check out TED WILLIAMS: THE PURSUIT OF PERFECTION where Jim Prime and I interview over 200 people about Ted Williams.

Bill Nowlin

Movie of the Week

As In Wreck

By Bill Veeck
and Ed Linn

© 2002 Loafer's Magazine. All Rights Reserved.