BILL DWYRE

Mike Trout and Yasiel Puig are chips off the old Big Apple

The ball had been hit by Mays.

Both struggled at first. Mantle was sent to the minors and then recalled. Mays went 0 for 12 before hitting a home run off Warren Spahn in his 13th at bat.

"If I had gotten him out that time," Spahn joked years later, "we might never have seen him again."

Mantle went into the Hall of Fame in '74. Mays, because he played longer and eligibility doesn't begin until after retirement, made it in 1979.

Mantle hit home runs that sent people scrambling for tape measures. Even with his bad legs, he was timed in 3.1 seconds from home to first, a speed seldom matched even today.

Mays tried to steal home 10 times in his career and was successful eight. He remains the only major leaguer with three triples in one game and four homers in another.

Mantle hit 536 homers in his 18-year-career, had a lifetime batting average of .298 and hated the fact that it wasn't .300. Mays hit 660 homers in his 22-year career and had batted .302.

Legendary sportswriter Red Smith once wrote about Mantle and Mays, "You could get a fat lip in any saloon, starting an argument about which was best."

Arguments and fat lips could be a way of life in Los Angeles in years to come, assuming the Angels eventually pay the market rate for Trout and Puig's maturity catches up with his bat speed.

The redheaded kid from New York, now 85, just signed on for his 65th season of Dodgers play-by-play. He has dozens more Mantle and Mays stories, and they would work in nicely from the broadcast booth of a World Series that matched the Trout-led Angels and the Puig-led Dodgers.

Scully could even tweak his signature opening:

"It's time for Los Angeles baseball."

bill.dwyre@latimes.com

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