Current events are causing baseball nostalgia buffs to shift their focus from 1941, the year Joe DiMaggio hit in 56 consecutive games and Ted Williams batted .406, to 1951, the year the New York Giants staged their improbable comeback. . . .
There is a misconception that the Giants' 5-4 victory over the Brooklyn Dodgers at the Polo Grounds was a one-game playoff for the National League pennant. . . .
Actually, Bobby Thomson's home run was the decisive blow of a best-of-three series. The Giants won the first game, 3-1, at Ebbets Field. The Dodgers evened things, 10-0, at the Polo Grounds. . . .
When Wilson Alvarez of the Chicago White Sox pitched a no-hitter in his second major league game Sunday, the name of Bobo Holloman resurfaced. . . .
Holloman was the only pitcher this century to throw a no-hitter in his first major league game. Alva Lee Holloman, 28, accomplished the feat for the St. Louis Browns against the Philadelphia Athletics May 6, 1953. It turned out to be his only major league season. The right-hander from Georgia wound up with a 3-7 record and 5.23 ERA. He died in 1987. . . .
The schedule advantage the rest of this year belongs to the Dodgers, who play 30 of their last 51 games at home. Atlanta plays only 20 of its last 52 at home, and San Francisco 27 of its last 51. . . .
Cincinnati rookie Mo Sanford, who will pitch against the Dodgers Wednesday, was billed as "the natural" in a story in Rolling Stone magazine in 1984 when he was playing high school baseball in Starkville, Miss. . . .
The Chicago Cubs' biggest mistake might have been trading reliever Mitch Williams, who has come on strong for the Philadelphia Phillies. . . .
Of course, the Cubs gave up Rafael Palmeiro to get Williams from Texas in a multiplayer deal in 1988. . . .
Look-alikes: San Francisco Giant catcher Kirt Manwaring and Los Angeles King winger Dave Taylor. . . .
The New York Mets' trade of Ron Darling to Montreal for Tim Burke isn't looking so hot, either, now that Darling is pitching well for Oakland and Burke is having problems in the Mets' bullpen. . . .
The Detroit Tigers held the New York Yankees to one run in a doubleheader Saturday, but quickly returned to form when the Yankees scored 22 runs in a doubleheader Sunday. . . .
Among the Dodgers' best minor league prospects is Eric Karros, the 23-year-old first baseman from UCLA who is hitting .319 with 16 home runs and 86 RBIs for Albuquerque and is expected to be called up Sept. 1 when major league rosters are expanded. . . .
The Dodgers are 8-6 in games that Orel Hershiser has started. . . .
Montreal Expo second baseman Delino DeShields has a chance to lead the National League in both walks and strikeouts. . . .
The Atlanta Braves will more than double their 1990 attendance of 980,129. . . .
It is hard to believe that the Boston Red Sox are below .500 in the friendly confines of Fenway Park. . . .
If you don't think that the complete game has become a lost art, consider that nobody in the National League has pitched more than seven. . . .
Monday night football is fine, but I could do without Sunday night baseball. . . .
Look for more advertising on John Daly's clothing this weekend in Colorado. . . .
What made the tennis tournament at the Pan American Games different from the women's tour is that Pam Shriver wasn't upset. . . .
Actually, Shriver should be applauded for choosing to represent her country instead of attempting to pad her bank account. . . .
J.D. McDuffie, the stock car driver who was killed Sunday at Watkins Glen, N.Y., never finished higher than third in 653 Winston Cup races. . . .
The San Francisco 49ers may trade for a running back and have expressed interest in the Denver Broncos' Bobby Humphrey, the Pittsburgh Steelers' Tim Worley and the New England Patriots' John Stephens. . . .
The Seattle Seahawks are expecting big things from Cortez Kennedy, their second-year defensive tackle from the University of Miami. . . .
Richard Petruska, the 6-foot-10 center from Czechoslovakia who has been granted a release from his scholarship by Loyola Marymount, visited the UCLA campus Monday. . . .
Highlight--or possibly lowlight--of the Kings' exhibition schedule will be a game against the New York Rangers Sept. 27 on an outdoor rink in the Caesars Palace parking lot in Las Vegas. Good luck to those in charge of keeping the ice from melting. . . .
Despite a knee injury he suffered recently, George Foreman will be ready and willing to replace Mike Tyson against Evander Holyfield Nov. 8 if called upon. Foreman plans to fight in November, whether it is against Holyfield or some tomato can. . . .
Now we really have something to dislike about Fidel Castro, who participated in the wave at the Pan American Games the other day.