A fierce competitor throughout a career marked by 12 batting titles, frequent fisticuffs and countless spikes-first slides intended to maim, Ty Cobb was relentless in his off-diamond endeavors, as well. As an investor, he made shrewd and well-calculated expenditures in Coca-Cola and General Motors. And in World Series showdowns in which he was not an on-field participant, he engaged in “ghost writing” with the Wheeler Syndicate. Regarding his published accounts, Cobb insists that the content was entirely his, rather than the sports writers/editors to which he submitted the pieces. Whatever the percentages, Cobb remained friends with at least one contact, Philadelphia sports writer Stoney McLinn. Well after his playing days, Cobb composed this letter to McLinn. Written entirely in Cobb’s hand on two 7-1/4 x 10-1/2” sheets of his personal letterhead, the correspondence is dated “2/21/51” and addressed to “Mr. “Stoney” McLinn” of Northfield, N.J. In Cobb’s customary green ink, the letter reads (in full):
“Dear Stoney – In regards to our telephone conversation while I was in New York recently and relative to a series of articles to be used by you by radio or television or any way my friend “Stoney” sees fit, if you can come out for a visit so we can work on this in a thorough way, as we will have plenty of time also have access to the many scrap books and records I have, I say come when you can and my full time is yours.
I hope you know by this time “Stoney” how I feel about you and that I would not do this for anyone else. For I have gotten to the point in my life that money would not be the influencing factor, only that the stories are done properly and by a true friend and the one that through the many years of association is more qualified than anyone else to do the stories, hence my consent.
Hope you can arrange your affairs and come out. Kindest to Mrs. McLinn and best to yourself, I am,
The signature, abbreviated as it may be at simply “Ty,” is bold (“10” strength) and accompanied by Cobb’s customary paraph. The sheets remain crisp and complete, both with normal mailing folds.
Accompanying is a full photo LOA from JSA.