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Readers have their opinions about my opinions.
In response to my July 17 column, “My mighty, majestic home run*,” Joe Small elaborated on the sound of hitting a home run:
“I hit a few of those in my (distant) youth,” he wrote. “I was also fortunate enough to hit a few legitimate home runs. There is no sound in ANY sport that resonates like the sound of a baseball being hit solidly (right on the sweet spot) by a wooden bat. Forget the ping of aluminum bats. Doesn’t come close.
“The sweet sound of a ball well struck even comes through on the televised games. It instantly gets everyone’s attention, whether they are watching the game or are engrossed in some other baseball activity, like eating a hot dog or checking out the good-looking girls, etc.
“You can’t hear the basketball swishing through the net for the game-winning goal, even on TV with all of its sophisticated microphones. The sound of a football being caught for the game-winning touchdown is audible only to the receiver (or the defender who was beaten on the play). You can hear the golf club making contact with the ball, but there is nothing magic about the sound.”
Not surprisingly, my July 10 column, “White Sox or Cubs? Pick One,” drew a response.
Cathy Elliott, who writes columns for NASCARmedia.com, has been a Cubs fans “since the day I was born,” she wrote. “I even lived in Chicago for a few years back in the early ’90s, two blocks from Wrigley Field. When I couldn’t go to the game, I could open my window, sit on the sill and hear Harry Caray singing.”
Carol Boersma wrote to say she is a Sox fan—she even included a photo of her grandson’s baseball-themed bedroom with a White Sox baseball cap.
“I was born and raised in Chicago,” she wrote, “and I always thought there was only one baseball team in Chicago: White Sox. It was not until I married that I learned there was another team: Cubs. I had heard the name but did not realize they were from Chicago.
“Needless to say, after saying ‘I do’ 43 years ago, I now understand there are two baseball teams in Chicago—although I know only one matters to me. I have a license plate on the front of my car telling everyone the Chicago White Sox are the 2005 champs. My official N.C. plate proudly reads: CHGOSOX.”
Boersma attended many White Sox games as a youngster.
“When, in my younger years, I also would attend Sox games with my dad,” she wrote. “Oh, what a special time that was. I remember one year we went to every game for a week they were in town. As I got older, I would attend the White Sox games with my girlfriends. What a time we had.
“It really gives my age when I tell you I remember going when the best well-known players were Sherman, ‘Little Louie,’ Hershberger, etc.”
Mike Hershberger began his career as a White Sox outfielder in 1961 and played with White Sox till 1964. Sherman Lollar was a catcher from 1952 to 1963. Luis Aparicio, a shortstop, first played for the White Sox in ’56-62. Lollar and ‘Little Louie’ played on the 1959 World Series team.
Boersma knows first-hand about the rivalry between the Cubs and the White Sox.
“Sad to say, we moved down to the Carolinas before I had a chance to visit the new (White Sox) stadium,” she wrote. “My son-in-law is one of the most avid Sox fans I know—my daughter, on the other had, has this notion to cheer for that other team—and, yes, they are happily married. My daughter and son-in-law are lucky enough to have gotten tickets to go see the Sox play in Yankee stadium before the landmark (is torn down).”
Boersma does not follow the White Sox as regularly as she did it the past, but the team remains her favorite.
“Actually, there are players on the team now I am ashamed to admit I do not know who they are,” she wrote. “But that really doesn’t matter. They play for the Chicago White Sox, so you know they are the best.”
MICHAEL PAUL is the sports editor at the Beacon. Reach him at 754-6890 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.