Whatever happened to all those people who said Cal Ripken could no longer be an outstanding hitter without Eddie Murray batting behind him? All Cal's doing at the moment is leading the American League in hitting.
* How can anyone be surprised that owner Eli Jacobs is entertaining -- read, seeking -- offers for the Orioles? A lot of rich people in these financially troubled times are selling assets to gain much needed cash.
On page 69 of this month's Maryland Horse magazine, nine horse farms are offered for sale. "Reduced to $1.2 million," says the ad for a farm in Chesapeake City. "Asking $1.8 million," says another. It's said nine major-league ballclubs are for sale.
* The opinion expressed here that remote Syracuse is not a suitable place for the NCAA lacrosse Final Four was not lost on the lords of the sport. Over the weekend they announced a six-year rotation for the event, all the sites situated in the corridor from College Park to New Brunswick, N.J. The Final Four goes to Penn next year, to Maryland in '93.
* It surprises many that Brown's Dom Starsia has been voted Coach of the Year in men's Division I lacrosse. North Carolina's Dave Klarmann went 16-0 and won the national championship. Ted Bauer, chairman of the All-America selection committee, offers this interesting insight to Starsia's selection by his fellow coaches:
"Brown was undefeated during the regular season, plus Dom built the program there. He recruited Brown's players. Dave Klarmann had a perfect record, but he only got the job last July. All the players on his championship team were recruited by his predecessor, Willie Scroggs. The coaches no doubt took that into consideration."
* Only those who bleed blue and gold are going to prefer Navy's home football schedule this fall to Maryland's. Maryland opens Sept. 7 with Virginia. The same day, the Middies open against Ball State.
After that, Maryland's next two home games the following two Saturdays will be against Syracuse and West Virginia. The next two at Annapolis will be with William & Mary and Bowling Green.
* The folks at St. Mary's College in Southern Maryland have long memories. Over the weekend they planted a tree in memory of LibTurnbull Harryman, who died March 4. Lib was a star athlete at the school in field hockey, tennis, lacrosse and duckpin bowling. She graduated in 1919. She was a sister of the late Jack Turnbull, a legendary lacrosse hero, and of Doug Turnbull, who starred at Johns Hopkins in the '20s.
* Perhaps the best high school player in the Lacrosse Classic at Hopkins over the weekend was defenseman Chad Smith, from Baldwin (L.I.) High. He enters the plebe class at West Point this summer.
Army assistant coach Richie Meade, who was head coach at the University of Baltimore until the school dropped intercollegiate athletics, says this about recruiting lacrosse players at West Point:
"We don't get many blue-chippers like Chad Smith. The problem is the difference between perception and reality. Kids think of West Point and they think of military discipline.
"What they don't think of is that they can come to Army, get a great education for free, and then do the required five years in the Army. During that time they can get an M.B.A. and gain job experience supervising people. So they can come out at 27 with an advanced degree and managing experience. That's a good deal."
* George Acton, of the sponsoring Bud Light distributorship here, says the Bud Light Triathlon event coming up June 23 should be the best ever held in Baltimore. Says Acton: "This is the 10th year for the Bud Light series and they're concentrating on 10 events, of which ours is one. And Lyn Brooks, having run this event a few times, does a fantastic job organizing it locally."
* Baltimore fans are disappointed that Chuck Thompson is not among those who will be enshrined in the Baseball Hall of Fame July 23, but you have to admit Cooperstown chose a pretty good broadcaster this year: Joe Garagiola. Joe has been a great ambassador for our national pastime lo these many years. Maybe Chuck will get in next year.