BYPLAY by ROGER KAHN: Bill Veeck: The Happy Hustler

The ringmaster rose early, put on a yellow turtleneck shirt and made his one-legged way to Comiskey Park, which weathers gracefully on the South Side of Chicago, like the ringmaster himself. It was clear and warm and sunlit, a morning for the gods, but Bill Veeck's team, the White Sox, had not descended from Olympus. From Alan Bannister at shortstop to Richie Zisk in right field, the 1977 Sox are human, at best.

Attendance remains uncertain. Seventeen seasons without a pennant have eroded the old South Side enthusiasm. Compared to what baseball men...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!