If either the Milwaukee Brewers or Seattle Mariners hire Don Baylor as their next manager, it will be a fitting tribute and much deserved appointment for a man who is ready to assume the leadership role. He was so attached to the Baltimore Orioles that when he was traded in 1976 to the Oakland A's he broke up emotionally.
From the Mike Todd handbook: One fundamental reason the Orioles' farewell to Memorial Stadium lacked dramatic impact is because Hall of Famers Jim Palmer, Brooks and Frank Robinson -- plus Robin Roberts, who was virtually overlooked -- were introduced first and not at the end of the ceremony for what would have been a momentous finale . . . Now that Ken Levine has resigned, listener reaction shows WBAL and the Orioles subjected the audience to maybe the poorest play-after-the-play announcing this city has heard since Lee Davis and his complex of deuces routine . . . Walter Driskill, former general manager of the Baltimore Colts, who was overqualified for the job intellectually, has sold his U.S. import franchise of Beck's Beer back to the brewery in Bremen, Germany, at an enormous profit.
Another book authored by Alex Hawkins, the ex-Colt, is expected out next week . . . Johns Hopkins-Western Maryland is shaping up as state's best football game of the year . . . Referee/coach Charley Eckman, along with former Brooklyn Dodger Gordon "Babe" Phelps, Olympian Lloyd Keaser and coaches Betty Hallmark and Mason "Daffy" Russell, will be among the first inductees in Anne Arundel County's athletic hall of fame . . . Sports lost a momentous and colorful leader with the death of Dr. Herb Brown, former chairman of the University of Maryland Board of Regents, and a man who directed the University of Baltimore to the basketball heights in the late 1930s when he was the school's imaginative athletic director.
Remember how just a few short years ago, because of poor products on the field, there was talk Atlanta and Pittsburgh couldn't support major-league baseball. It wasn't the cities -- it was the management . . . John Henneman, a Baltimorean based in Indianapolis, heard the final Orioles game via Detroit's WJR, which he says was magnificent in its reports, while also enjoying the WBAL broadcast in Baltimore, courtesy of his mother, who put a telephone next to the radio so he'd have the best of both broadcasts.
Bruce Smith and Arnold Tucker, retired as an admiral and colonel, respectively, played for Miami High School and then faced each other as opposing quarterbacks at the Naval Academy and West Point, which is a historical oddity . . . David (There Is No) Justice didn't miss third base in Game 5 of the National League Championship Series -- it was an umpire's error -- so comparisons to the unfortunately maligned Fred "Bonehead" Merkle in 1908 are without parallel . . . Fishing buddies: Larry Cooper, former University of Maryland tackle, and Walt Budko, ex-Baltimore Bullet.
Arundel High alumnus Denny Neagle, prized pitching prospect of the Minnesota Twins, is not eligible for the World Series and will shortly be leaving for the Puerto Rican winter league . . . Baltimorean Dick Hendrickson has earned $226,640 on the Senior Golf Tour and is the circuit's fourth-leading driver, averaging 270.5 yards off the tee . . . WBAL's Ron Smith heads a snowbird golf tour to Florida in early December . . . Ex-Colt Lydell Mitchell, a superb gentleman, scoring lots of points with a food business that services schools around the country.
The Orioles' Jim Gilbert was voted "scout of the year" in Middle Atlantic region by his contemporaries . . . Mount St. Joe grad Jimmy Foit Jr., who played in the Texas Rangers' farm system, is the new baseball coach at Frederick's Thomas Johnson High School . . . If there's a station in the Baltimore/Washington area looking for an outstanding sports production man, hopefully it will consider Mike Gesker, released by Maryland Public TV, after 17 momentous years, because of economic cutbacks.
If Eli Jacobs and Gov. William Donald Schaefer weren't watching, they'll be interested to know the WMAR-TV poll showed an overwhelming 86 percent of respondents believe the new stadium name is a loser . . . Somehow we can't equate Mark Rypien to Sammy Baugh, the last Washington Redskins quarterback who took the team to a 7-0 start . . . One of the grand men of Orioles baseball, Gene Woodling, still finds time to call Eddie Weidner, retired trainer, just to say hello . . . You're getting to be a "young old-timer" if you remember the Reading Keys of the International League.