Sport: Into the Stretch

True ball fans are mathematicians. They worship averages. A player's performance at the plate, a team's actions on the field, are all judged by intricate accounting. But when it comes to judging pennant races, the fans themselves are the most important statistic. Last week, as the season rounded the late-summer turn, big-league attendance figures testified to one of the tightest stretch drives in years. Fans were piling into Milwaukee's County Stadium at a record 40,000-a-game clip. Cleveland had already surpassed its 1953 home-attendance figure. The Dodgers and Giants set turnstiles spinning whenever they met. The race was so close,...

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