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If you are a supporter of the San Francisco Giants without hope of direct financial gain, you stand self-accused of being something between an eccentric and a certifiable lunatic. Not that there is anything morally dubious about the Giants; it's just that they defy common sense and the law of probability with complete abandon. Their performance is always improbable and frequently impossible. They won the '51 pennant with a great stretch run; hung on last year to triumph when the Los Angeles Dodgers kicked the flag away, and they swept the '54 series from Cleveland after going in as distinct losers. In other seasons they turned their backs on glorious prospects to wallow shamefully near the bottom of the league. Much of this latter- day foolishness is recounted by Hodges, the team's broadcaster. The recounting is done with light skill and reads nothing like Hodges sounds on the air, so credit must be given to Hirshberg; who has previously collaborated with a priest, an oddball outfielder and a prison warden. (Note- this is the season's opener; we may not review the competition; the publishers (Viking) are having a delayed start with their book on the Mets and their underdog days last year in their first appearance in the league- which too was a very dilatory performance.)

Pub Date: April 5th, 1963
Publisher: Doubleday