Sunday, August 16, 2009
One sport that has the greatest-ever debate sewn up ...Posted by John Beamer
How many column inches each year are dedicated to analysing who the greatest baseball player is? Thousands. Flick through any recent Hardball Times Annual and I guarantee that you'll see at least two articles on the issue. Peruse this site and no doubt you'll find many more.
The problem is that cross era comparisons are almost impossible. And it isn't only baseball that suffers this issue. Think of today's greats: Is Tiger better than the Golden Bear? Is R-Fed better than Laver?
However, there is one sport that has it licked — sprinting. Earlier this evening Usain Bolt ran the 100m in 9.58s obliterating the world record by 0.11s. He's taken two-tenths of the world mark in the space of a year. Before he came along it took twenty years for the record to fall by two-tenths. Bolt's new record is the biggest fall in the 100m world record since electronic timing began in the 1960s.
At least one sport doesn't need to have the greatest-ever debate. As for folks writing on this site about Bonds vs. Ruth, let the speculation continue ...
John is an unashamed glory supporter having followed the Atlanta Braves since 1991. He blogs the Braves at Chop-n-Change. He welcomes comments, criticisms and suggestions via e-mail