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Viewpoint/ Letters : Flyers Can't, Twins Aren't, Packers Don't

May 16, 1987

Mike Downey's delicious column about the problems created by the names adopted by professional sports organizations exposed, at last, a matter that has always troubled me.

There are the Twins, for example, none of whom are even related, never mind fraternal or identical; the Padres, none of whom are even ordained; the Giants, not one of whom is over-large (Lee Smith plays baseball and he's as close as the sport gets to a giant, but he's a Cub); and the Rams, some of whom do while others don't.

The Flyers can't, the Packers don't, and if the Brewers do in any quantity, it's illegal. The Patriots may be, but it's doubtful the Saints are and the Angels, at best, are future tense.

Downey is certainly correct to suggest that the problem is not new. I first discovered it when I was a kid learning to be a baseball fan in Washington, D.C.--part of the eduction involved learning to explain that the Senator I rooted for was not Everett Dirksen or Lyndon Johnson, but Mickey Vernon, who hadn't ever run for office, let alone been elected. It's been downhill ever since.

DAVID HAMLIN

Los Angeles

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