What sports readers are saying
Letters to The Seattle Times sports editor
Solo's rant was sour note
Sally Jenkins' commentary on Hope Solo's Twitter ("Hope Solo would be wise to check her ego," Wednesday) rings true. By calling undue attention to herself, Solo's rant struck a sour note to her team's quest for an Olympic medal.
I like Solo for her work ethic and fierce competitive spirit, but instead of promoting herself, she should take a lesson from her veteran teammate, Abby Wambach, who when she took a vicious hit in the face in the game with Columbia, did not retaliate lest it jeopardize her team's composure or worse.
Americans like a little humility in their heroes, Hope. Show a bit more class.
— Steven Lequire, Des Moines
NBC's diving decision a flop
I have no problem with NBC tape-delaying Olympic glamour events into prime time in order to recoup their huge investment. I also understand their USA-centric choice of what they cover and their decision to keep at least one highlight event for broadcast during the last 30 minutes.
I still have some questions. Why, at least in the coverage on Monday through Wednesday, were viewers forced to sit through at least 45 minutes of synchronized diving at the top of every broadcast? Have any of you out there ever seen a synchronized-diving competition or known anybody who has? Have you known anybody who has ever competed in this sport? NBC, who advised you that this event would be a great way to begin every broadcast and to spend 20 percent of your prime-time window covering it?
— Steve Alberts, Vashon
Taxpayers will still have to pay
Regarding a statement in Jerry Brewer's recent column on the fairness of Chris Hansen's arena proposal ("Until further notice, it's just one arena plan," Tuesday): "Hansen is willing to do his part. But his group won't be a magic ATM."
Of course not. That would be Seattle and King County taxpayers.
— Jay Drakely, Seattle
Felix trade might please only Cosell
Enough with the talk of trading Mariners pitcher Felix Hernandez. What would we get for him? A faded former All-Star and maybe a couple of innominate supernumeraries? (Scientific term for "players to be named later." Always wanted to hear Howard Cosell say that.)
— John Griffin, Bellevue
Not your typical employee
Economist Kevin E. Cahill ("Ichiro and the Modern Worker," Op-Ed, July 26) offers an analogy of Ichiro to the typical employee that has serious flaws. Cahill's insights into the lack of loyalty between employers and employees, and his implication the Mariners are examples of corporate greediness, certainly bear some truth. But bringing Ichiro into the equation as an example of a typical employee just doesn't wash. For one thing, he makes millions of dollars a year, guaranteed. Not so typical. For another, Ichiro asked to be traded. He's no fool; he's acting in his best interest for both money and prestige.
Even though Ichiro comes from Japan, a country of career-long loyalty between employer and employee, to imply that he expected some kind of golden pasture contract — even from a Japanese-owned corporation — for his past years of excellence is absurd.
— Patrice Demombynes, Seattle
He's gone, so get off his case
OK, Steve Kelley, I think we all have heard your message about Ichiro ("Losing Ichiro is Mariners' gain," Friday). You have been on his case for a couple of months now, and I am sure Ichiro and many others have read how bad the team was with his presence.
Why continue your rant on Ichiro and put him down? He is gone now, so don't continue to destroy the fans' love for a player because of your dislike for him.
— Jack Becker, Redmond
Kelley off base on great player
Where does one begin with the critique of the Ichiro criticism? OK, for the sake of brevity: It's unprecedented and foreign to the Japanese culture for one of their players — be he the team star or 25th man on the roster — to be a rah-rah type of leader on American soil. Expect continued deferential dignity from their exported players.
The two words that best describe Kelley's column are "off base" — ironic in that they were directed at a future Hall of Famer who may well end up with 3,000 hits, all after the age of 27.
— Lew Witham, Seattle
A paradox and contradiction
I could not be more in agreement with Steve Kelley's arguments about Ichiro and the positive effect on the Mariners that his moving on has brought. This player has been a contradiction and a paradox for many years.
I'll bet Kelley's article will generate a load of leave-Ichiro-alone comments. People saw him as the face of the Mariners and do not wish to examine the unpleasant side of his admittedly impressive career. But when I think of names like Buhner, Griffey, Martinez, Wilson, Davis and so many more, I will know with certainty that this guy does not deserve inclusion in that group.
— Tom Likai, ShorelineSend us your backtalk: Letters bearing true names, addresses and telephone numbers for verification are considered for publication. Please limit letters to 125 words or less. They are subject to editing and become the property of The Times. Fax them to 206-464-3255, or mail to: Backtalk, Seattle Times Sports, P.O. Box 70, Seattle, WA 98111. Or email to: firstname.lastname@example.org.