Ted Williams, the last of baseball's .400 hitters, knows that today's players are bigger, stronger and much better paid.

Williams, however, isn't too pleased with the hitters he sees occasionally on television."Modern hitters will go after more bad balls than in any era," Williams said Sunday after being honored at Fenway Park with a day marking the 50th anniversary of his .406 batting average in 1941.

And, after more than one-half century, Teddy Ballgame tipped his cap to Boston Red Sox' fans Sunday.

With the same flair that marked his long career with the Red Sox, the Hall of Famer, approaching 73, saluted Red Sox fans.

After taking a verbal swipe at his longtime favorite target, sports writers, Williams reached into his pocket and pulled out a Red Sox cap.

"So they can never write ever again that I was hardheaded, so they can never write again that I never tipped my hat to the crowd, today I tip my hat," Williams said with a wide smile as he waved the cap to a packed crowd of more than 34,000 at Fenway Park.

"I tip my hat to all the people in New England," he said, "the greatest sports fans on earth."