Hit ’em where they ain’t

Just an odd thing that has stuck with me for a while. I read somewhere last month that the average weight of a major league ballplayer in the early ’70s—guys of my generation— was 182 lb. (13 stone). It is now 209 (15 stone). In the ’80s I wrote a kid’s book on the game in which I made the point that, unlike (American) football or basketball, baseball was played at the highest level by normal-sized men. Mickey Mantle, Willie Mays, Roberto Clemente, for example, were all just under six feet tall. Now they’d be little guys, and people would be amazed at their abilities given their size. Certainly no room in today’s game for Wee Willie Keelers.

I know this sort of thing is happening in hockey, too. How about (everybody else’s) football?

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