Letters: Maury Wills is gone but his exploits are remembered

Maury Wills is one of the most important players not in the Hall of Fame. I influenced the way the game was (is) played by others by reinventing the stolen base. And considering how those Dodgers teams had so few points, that made him very valuable. He was also very good defensively. Yes, he had personal issues, but this is an institution that had Ty Cobb in its inaugural class.

Evan Puziss
View on the sea

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Growing up with the Dodgers-Giants rivalry in the 1960s, I loved watching Maury Wills frustrate and beat the Giants almost single-handedly. Next to Sandy Koufax, he was my favorite Dodger in those days and I was horrified when he was traded for popcorn and a hot dog to the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Whether or not the team continues with its outdated number retirement policy, just as no one will receive Fernando’s 34, no one after Dave Roberts should wear number 1. 30

Elliot’s Powers
San Diego

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The passing of Dodger great Maury Wills begs the question: Why isn’t this guy in the Hall of Fame?

His numbers were equal and even superior to many players already in the room. I know because I watched it. And how many of them have a regular season MVP, an All-Star Game MVP and three World Series rings on their resume? I watched it, again not much.

What I didn’t have to look for was that none of them changed the game of baseball by bringing back the stolen base and making it an art.

It was bad enough that it took Gil Hodges forever to get in, but it’s…it’s a tragedy.

David Dale
Sonoma Valley

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Long before the wave, there was the chant “Go, go, go!” As a boy walking into Dodger Stadium with his dad, there were some things you hoped to see: Koufax smashing a deadly curveball; Willie Davis hits a ball into the gap; Don Drysdale claiming the outer part, if not the whole, of the plate; and Frank Howard hammering a misplaced fastball. But for the sheer excitement and thrill of the crowd, you couldn’t beat Maury Wills leaving first base.

Rob Stockley
Sierra Madre

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I can still hear John Ramsey’s booming voice, “Hit first for the Dodgers…” Hands start clapping. “The shortstop….” The ovation continues to mount. “Number 30….” Now a roar of thunder. “Maury…. The whole stadium applauds in unison! You have never heard of “wills”. You didn’t have to. Everyone knew. The captain intervened. It was time for excitement. It was time for Dodger baseball.

John Thompson
Mission Viejo

UCLA Marching Band

I have to agree with Chip Kelly about the lack of marquee opponents hurting attendance because those marquee schools have fans who travel everywhere to watch their teams play. UCLA won’t have more home fans, but if you just want to fill the Rose Bowl, scheduling high-profile teams is a good idea. Additionally, students and Bruin fans will be able to sell their tickets to opposing fans. Fans will come, but I doubt they’ll wear powder blue.

Judy Thompson
Glendora

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The question isn’t why only 29,344 people attended UCLA’s game last Saturday at the Rose Bowl. The real question is why someone showed up. I mean, seriously, an 11 a.m. football game against South Alabama and the fans are being criticized for not going?

Greg Nersesian
North Hollywood

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I don’t know why UCLA has such a problem with attendance at the Rose Bowl. You can get a ticket for as little as $6, which is a really good deal. Maybe it’s because they want $60 for parking!

Bill Piercy
long beach

MVP or HR derby?

Regarding the choice of MVP between Shohei Ohtani and Aaron Judge. Aaron Judge hasn’t won 13 games as a pitcher. He does not have a 2.34 ERA. When he does, then Judge has an argument for MVP.

Denis Hurwitz
Of the sea

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No, Bill Shaikin, the “true” home run record is not 73. The “true” home run record remains Roger Maris’ 61 (unless Aaron Judge breaks it this year).

Never mind that Bud Selig remained silent when Barry Bonds turned 61 using banned steroids. Players cannot set records by cheating just because the administrators of a sport want to ignore a scandal.

True sports fans know Maris’ 61 is the single-season home run feat.

Ray McKown
Torrance

Spread the blues

Angels are so hard to watch on TV and listen to on the radio. Advertisers are so poor. The TV guys, although I’m sure they’re nice, are so busy quoting obscure statistics. So what if that hit the wall would be a home run in X number of other baseball fields? As a very longtime Angels fan, I hope the new owner not only invests in a quality pitch, but also in announcing teams that make the game enjoyable with a little, not a lot, less local prejudice.

Steve Geary
crown of the sea

painful reminder

I read with deep sadness that former UCLA basketball starter Jalen Hill has passed away at age 22. He left the team in 2021 to struggle with his depression and anxiety. With all the resources UCLA would have for him, it shows that a mental health pandemic, especially among young men, primarily exists. I pray for the family.

Craig A. Horowitz
santa monica

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