© St. Petersburg Times, published July 28, 2002
As a Clevelander and avid Indians fan, I have no love for what Larry Dolan is doing to them. But he is right on the money (pun intended) regarding Yankees owner George Steinbrenner (Cleveland owner Dolan unhappy with Steinbrenner, July 17). The latter's rhetoric about "commitment to excellence" is exposed by the Times' "millionaires" list (July 17) that shows the Yankees possess 10 (counting new acquisition Raul Mondesi) players with salaries of $7-million or more. The team with the next highest is the Braves (four).
Let's end the charade: Put all the players in a pool (they rotate in and out of uniforms anyway) and let the Yankees pick the first 25. Steinbrenner can pay them what they're "worth," and the rest of the teams can draft the remaining players in reverse order of their rank in the standings.
-- Bill Ackerman, Homosassa
I'm not a big sports fan, but Gary Shelton's column on Steve Spurrier (Capital's club is getting perfect representative, Tuesday) was a real beaut.
-- Alice Swanson, Clearwater
The one section of the Times that I typically avoid is Sports. Thursday, however, I read Gary Shelton's article Don't let abusers off the hook. I want to thank him for his excellent article. I am a licensed mental health counselor who served as a counselor for the domestic-violence intervention program in Pinellas County. It is crucial to remember, as Shelton has written, "Domestic violence is a crime." It's also important to remember that help is available.
-- Denise S. Lynn, Dunedin
You can pass the word to Vince Naimoli that when the day comes they trade Steve Cox, they will lose most of the die-hard fans who have supported the Rays through the hard times, and might as well hang up the franchise. He had better look at getting rid of his GM before Cox.
-- Guy Nash, St. Petersburg
In thinking about which team ('02 Rays or '62 Mets) is the worst team ever, I believe that the Rays will become the worst in baseball history based on winning percentage. Indeed, they probably are the worst team ever, even if their percentage ends up being higher than the '62 Mets.
That Mets team didn't have as many weak opponents as the Rays. That Mets team had Gil Hodges, Richie Ashburn and some other accomplished players. The Rays have zilch!
The prevalent opinion is that our area can't support a major-league baseball team. I say get us a major-league team with ownership that respects its customers and the fans will debunk that theory.
-- Garrick Case, Clearwater
I read Darrell Fry's commentary and enjoy most. But let's leave the women's rights issues to NOW and stay focused on sports (Tiger is ignoring the issues, July 20). I don't give a flip about TV sponsors. Augusta National is a private golf club. Also, I don't think the networks want to lose the Masters, where they make a few nickels. I tolerated the screaming liberal views of the rest of the paper these many years because of sports. Please don't get infected.
-- Jim Clarke, Sun City Center