Time marches on, and can big-league baseball's return here be far off when Sports Illustrated, no less, gets to the nitty-gritty in the eighth and final page of analyzing and psychoanalyzing "WASHINGTON, D.C." as town and sports town by venturing, "surely it would be healthy for all of America if the measured game of summer came back to Washington and touched the frenetic government"?
SI's talented Frank Deford does in in this week's issue - readily 'fessing to the reader, "I hail from Baltimore and possessed certain childhood prejudices against our nation's capital . . . because both the Senators and Redskins then held Baltimore's territorial rights . . ."
Deford tells it as seen by pundits from Richard Nixon to Duke Zeibert to Hyman Perlo to Deford, with fine Defordian turns of phrase to haul us along, viz.: "(Washington) was just conjured up as part of a North-South trade one night by Jefferson and Hamilton, and to this day the people of Washington perceive themselves as throw-ins in the deal, players that were named later."
Weathervane Zeibert's name (on our prepublication copy) is misspelled a few times but Deford rallies with the magic words:
"Share the Orioles with Washington" . . .
Sydney Maree, the great black runner from South Africa, withdrew yesterday from Saturday's "Magnificient Mile" in Philadelphia. "Because of all the pressure . . . I'm drained, really," the Villanova sophomore said. "I slept on it all night. I just decided to withdraw. Its the best thing."
Maree saw no solution to international sports sanctions threatened against New Zealand (John Walker, Rod Dixon), Ireland (Eamonn Coghlan) and the United States (Don Paige, Steve Scott, etc.) if their athletes competed with him in violation of the International Amateur Athletic Federation ban against South Africans because of the country's apartheid policy. And they weren't about to run against him without the say-so of their national governing bodies, which bow to the twisted IAAF "benefit" to South African blacks . . .
Bud Delp picks up on the "willingness" of Louis Wolfson, owner of Affirmed, to match-race the 1978 Triple Crowner against Delp-trained Spectacular Bid by telling The Post's Clem Florio: "Isn't it amazing how bold the Affirmed people have become since my colt got beat in the Belmont? Where were they this spring when I made the suggestion of a match race? . . . When I'm convinced my colt is back to himself, like, say, this fall, we'll be glad to accomodate Mr. Wolfson or anybody else. Just let them put up the money (so) the price is right" . . .