Add two more names to Maryland's top 175 athletes

May 31, 2012

I would like to mention two athletes who should have been included in Mike Klingaman's list of Maryland's 175 top athletes ("The top 175," May 17).

The first is Bill "Swish" Nicholson, born, raised, and died in Chestertown. He went to Washington College and then played one year with the Philadelphia Athletics, 10 years with the Chicago Cubs and five years with the Phillies.

In 1943, he led the National League in home runs (29), RBIs (128) and was third in Most Valuable Player votes. In 1944, he led the league in home runs (33), RBIs (122), runs (116), total bases (317), and he was second MVP votes. He hit a total of 235 home runs.

The second athlete is Hyman "Lefty" Stern, regarded by many as Baltimore's finest all-around athlete. He graduated in 1926 from City College, where he starred in basketball, football, baseball, boxing and wrestling. It was not uncommon for him to play a basketball game for City and then race to the wrestling room to wrestle for the team. Aside from his athletic achievements, he was a true gentleman and a very nice man. I always enjoyed talking to him.

Herman Blinchikoff, Pikesville

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