Headline News


July 26, 1948

By Keith Thursby
Times staff writer

Dropcap_q_quaint uiz time: What does this headline mean?

It’s pretty clear we’re talking about baseball, but who are the Twinks and the Suds?

The Twinks were a familiar headline name in The Times for the Hollywood Stars. I never understood the need for the nickname’s nickname. You really need another way to say Stars?

The Suds referred to the Seattle Rainiers, named after a local brewery.
The story was a run of the mill wire report on the doubleheader but there’s one line that really stopped me. The Seattle pitcher is referred to as a "wrong hander."

As a lifelong left-hander, I’ve been called a southpaw, a port sider and even a goofy footer, but a wrong hander?

Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe the pitcher was right-handed.

About lmharnisch

I am retired from the Los Angeles Times
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2 Responses to Headline News

  1. Jim Houck says:

    In those days, the headline count was king. No computerized typefaces
    that can be squeezed and kerned. The Linotype was inflexible. Twinks had
    a count of 6 1/2, Stars 5. So in your example:
    Twinks Cop Opener,
    Drop Nightcap to Suds
    Stars would be too short. Though this headline writer broke the rule,
    the slot man usually wanted the first line to be as long or longer than
    the second. As for Suds (4 1/2), Rainers (7) would be too long.
    Beyond headlines, sportswriters, up to about the mid-60s, used nicknames
    for nicknames in stories because they thought it gave their stories
    informality. Here are the ones I remember for the old Pacific Coast League:
    San Diego Padres: Pads
    Hollywood Stars: Twinks
    Los Angeles Angels: Seraphs
    Portland Beavers: Bevos
    Seattle Raniers: Suds
    From the majors:
    Brooklyn Dodgers: Bums
    Cleveland Indians: Injuns
    Chicago White Sox: Pale Hose
    Pittsburgh Pirates: Bucs
    St. Louis Cardinals: Cards
    Philadelphia-Kansas City Athletics: A’s
    Philadelphia Phillies: Phils
    Washington Senators: Nats
    Baltimore Orioles: O’s
    Notice that the derivatives are shorter, therefore better headline
    words. Some, of course, remain today.
    Baseball players: Horsehiders
    Football players: Gridders
    Basketball players: Hoopsters
    Track and Field: Thinclads
    Tennis: Netmen and Netwomen
    Golf:: Linksters
    Wrestlers: Matmen


  2. kirk monroe says:



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