Dear Mr. Baseball:Has the American League talked about...


June 23, 1994

Dear Mr. Baseball:

Has the American League talked about starting to let pitchers hit again?

Yaakov Statman, Age 12


Dear Yaakov Statman:

Mr. Baseball doesn't like to be the bearer of bad news, particularly when it means disappointing somebody like yourself, who is several years younger than many of Mr. Baseball's neckties. But if you're hoping for the demise of the designated hitter any time soon, forget it.

Although fans grumble about it sometimes, the DH is pretty popular among the people whose opinions count -- American League owners. They recently appointed a league president, Gene Budig, who says the DH has "enlivened the game," and fired a commissioner, Fay Vincent, who called the DH a dud.

Mr. Baseball recently conducted a DH survey of his own and found considerable support for the rule among friends of Jim Ray Hart and Ron Blomberg.

Dear Mr. Baseball:

Who was the first man to pitch a no-hitter in the World Series?

Ryan King, Age 12


Dear Ryan King:

Although Mr. Baseball welcomes questions from readers of all ages, he respectfully must declare a moratorium on letters, phone calls and faxes from 12-year-olds. Please use this time to catch up on important tasks such as completing science projects and annoying your parents.

In its long history, the World Series has produced only one no-hitter. This was a particularly memorable achievement because it also was a perfect game, twirled by the New York Yankees' Don Larsen on Oct. 8, 1956.

Larsen received many rewards for pitching so well in this most important game. As the last out was recorded, Yankees catcher Yogi Berra leaped into his arms, a dream of many female baseball fans. Larsen also was invited to every Yankees old-timers game for the next 30 years, a nice perk if your idea of a good time was standing between Phil Rizzuto and Bill Dickey.

You didn't ask, but there have been four one-hitters in World Series history, the most recent being turned in by the Boston Red Sox's Jim Lonborg in 1967.

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