Sport: The Little General

In the second grade in Binger, Okla., they asked us what we wanted to be. Some said they wanted to be a farmer. Some said rancher. Cowboy. I said I wanted to be a ballplayer, and they laughed. In the eighth grade they asked the same question, and I said ballplayer and they laughed a little more. By the eleventh grade they weren't laughing.

These days no one laughs at the Cincinnati Reds' Johnny Lee Bench, not even when he says he is going to be baseball's first $100,000-a-year catcher. Instead, rival managers laud him...

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