Perhaps no rival American League manager is more vocal in his appreciation of the potential of the Minnesota Twins, who have 14 rookies on their roster, than Ralph Houk of Boston. ''I like the Twins because they have a lot of talented kids who can play this game,'' Houk said. ''If their young pitching staff grows the way I think it can, they could begin to improve significantly as a team as early as next season.'' However, one of the Twins' rookie pitchers (Terry Felton) broke a 68-year-old major league record recently by losing his 14th consecutive game -- and has since made it 15.
Although Houston infielder Ray Knight has been a strong contender for the National League batting championship all season he thinks his lack of foot speed will probably will cost him the title.'' You need maybe 10 or 12 leg hits a year to win a batting championship and I simply don't run that well,'' Knight said. . .Houston coach Bob Lillis, who was named as the Astros' interim manager after Bill Virdon was fired, has been with the club since 1962.