Opinion: Cal Ripken gets my MVP vote over (in order) Jose Canseco, Joe Carter and Cecil Fielder. He's the only one who hit for power and average; leads the league in total bases; fielded hundreds more balls at a tougher position in Gold Glove style.
Fact: The Red Sox are 1-5 since a black cat streaked through their dugout at Memorial Stadium last Monday night.
Opinion: That Ripken played on a lousy team just shouldn't matter. Not after a season this spectacular.
Fact: The eight teams that fired managers this year played .437 ball before the firings and .475 after (through Sunday), but only the Royals got significantly better.
Opinion: Don't get me wrong, I'm all for the Glazers if they can get us an NFL expansion team, but the idea they had about a couple of National League expansion candidate cities sharing a team was just about the worst idea ever.
Fact: John McEnroe keeps saying he'll retire after next year.
Opinion: Something tells me Joe Montana is happy the 49ers are losing without him.
Fact: The Orioles' clubhouse in the new stadium will be 3,600 square feet, which is about the size of a 5-bedroom house.
Opinion: You look at the numbers, and Todd Frohwirth is just about the best middle/long reliever in the American League this year.
Fact: Six members of the AP college football top 25 have been on probation in the last decade. (Tennessee, Oklahoma, Clemson, Florida, Illinois, Texas A&M.)
Opinion: Jeff Hostetler is not the reason the Giants are losing. It's that their mortal-again defense is giving up big plays.
Fact: As of yesterday, the Orioles had stolen fewer bases in 1991 than six players. (Rickey Henderson, Roberto Alomar, Tim Raines, Marquis Grissom, Otis Nixon, Delino DeShields.)
Opinion: It's just plain rotten that the Orioles haven't announced John Oates is coming back.
Fact: Starting next year, Miami-Florida State football will be a Big East-ACC game.
Opinion: The Orioles should trade David Segui to a team where he'll have a chance to develop.
Fact: It's up to 29 homers and 92 RBI for the Whammer-san of the Kintetsu Buffaloes, Jim Traber.
Opinion: Just because Mike Tyson is innocent until proven guilty doesn't mean I can't be nauseated by the fact that he's going on with his Holyfield fight.
Fact: Leo Gomez's numbers are going to end up looking similar to Craig Worthington's from his rookie year.
Opinion: Jose Mesa could stand an entire season at Rochester.
Fact: Joe Gibbs' comrade Dan Henning is -- whew -- 34-66-1 as an NFL head coach.
Opinion: That the Orioles are having a big year defensively shows just how important it is to have a big year defensively.
Fact: Those lucky Georgetown basketball season-ticket holders will see the Hoyas play UMES, St. Leo and Delaware State in December.
Opinion: The Olympic basketball competition will be interesting for the first half of the first game, and then: borrrr-ring.
Fact: A letter-writer suggests the Orioles should trade Randy Milligan, Mike Flanagan, Arthur Rhodes, Craig Worthington and Dwight Evans to the Red Sox for Roger Clemens.
Opinion: It's time for a compromise candidate: Charm Park?
Fact: No preseason odds were posted in Las Vegas on the chances of the New Orleans Saints being three games ahead of the 49ers by the end of September.
Opinion: Now that it's clear the two sides are basically even, maybe we can stop all the jingoistic blather surrounding to the Ryder Cup.
Fact: My day isn't complete without the NHL exhibition scores.
Opinion: Anyone who wants to manage the Mets probably has weird dreams about getting eaten for dinner.
Fact: A World Series game was televised for the first time 44 years ago yesterday.
Opinion: Frank Viola is going to be one of the top-dollar free agents this winter even though he basically bagged 1991 after the Mets dropped from contention in August.
Fact: From the Indianapolis Colts media guide: "Looking for the final touch to cap a commitment of bringing winning football to Indianapolis, the Colts hired Ron Meyer. . . ."
Opinion: The Orioles can lose with or without Kirk McCaskill. Mike Moore would be a better choice.
Fact: L.A. Rams special teamer Paul Butcher after recovering one fumble and forcing another against Green Bay: "It was the best three minutes of my life."
Opinion: If the Expos wind up needing a stadium next year, there'll be one vacant up on 33rd Street. . . .