NOTEworthy Day: When the Baltimore Orioles play the St. Louis Cardinals in exhibition games, there's a chance, if general manager Roland Hemond can make it come true, of Rick Dempsey catching against his son John, a catcher in the Cardinals' organization. In what would be a perfect family reunion. Mrs. Dempsey should throw out the first ball.
* The University of Minnesota continues an all-out effort to attract Dunbar's Michael Lloyd, but word among recruiters grants Arkansas the inside track . . . Two Baltimore Colts of yesteryear, Hardy Brown, age 67, and Bob Perina, 70, have died . . . It took Super Bowl XXVI to qualify as the first-ever football game we watched that had a false start and a false ending -- which is hard to do.
* Celebration of Babe Ruth's 97th birthday at his old house on Emory Street was a grand-slam party, highlighted by the gift of "Old Oriole" programs of the 1890s from Helen Hall, in memory of her late husband, J.M. Dryden Hall . . . The Orioles have been notified that reports of former pitcher Bob Alexander's death are erroneous and the source is unimpeachable -- Alexander himself, who is living in Fallbrook, Calif. . . . Sportscaster Ted Patterson's son, Mike, 16, is making continual progress at Johns Hopkins Hopkins after being hit by a rare illness.
* Mary Lou Bartram, of Harford County, has made a momentous contribution to jousting, whose leaders are ready to preserve its honor as the official state sport, regardless of pressure applied by duckpin bowling and lacrosse . . . More than 2,000 high school teams in this country still use demeaning American Indian nicknames and logos, which is an ongoing insult to a race deserving of much more respect.
* A salesman pushing Washington Redskins souvenirs, after their Super Bowl win, at a stand on Ritchie Highway, said customers were almost nonexistent, which is another indication of the apathy hereabouts for a team that isn't Baltimore's . . . Ronnie "Slam" Duncan, onetime Baltimore sportscaster, is a momentous success at Indianapolis' WTHR and, for recreation, is engaging in amateur boxing bouts . . . Here's a "second" to Pat O'Malley's suggestion that the Naval Academy elevate its ice hockey team from club status to a varsity sport.
* Maybe one reason Maryland's basketball team isn't a factor in the conference race is it plays too many soft touches early, and, thus, isn't prepared to handle the tough segment of the schedule that comes later . . . Orioles vice president Bob Aylward took a bow on the "Nashville Now" television show . . . Don't be surprised if Leon Day, the former Baltimore Elite Giant, makes a run at the Baseball Hall of Fame when the veterans' committee meets in March.
* Now Ralph Wilson, owner of the Buffalo Bills, turns his cheering interests toward Arazi, the colt he bred and sold, who leads the Triple Crown class . . . It will soon be announced that Patterson Park's No. 3 field will be named after the late Sterling "Sheriff" Fowble, who gave so much to amateur baseball in Baltimore . . . Frank Taylor has returned, which means he's about to organize another fast-pitch softball team that will surely makes its presence felt . . . Charlie Eckman wanted no part of the Maryland State Athletic Commission, but where he should be is on the state racing commission.
* Country Club of Maryland hired an outstanding greens superintendent in Paul O'Leary, who runs a well-disciplined operation . . . Next year's Pro Football Hall of Fame class includes first-time eligibles Walter Payton, Chuck Noll, John Stallworth, Dan Fouts and Donnie Shell, plus the 62 nominees who didn't make it this time . . . If major-league baseball allows the Seattle Mariners to move, you can look for an all-out fight from one of the country's toughest sports-minded senators, Slade Gorton, R-Wash., who refuses to be "conned" by sweet-talking league commissioners.
* One of Baltimore's outstanding high school catchers of the 1940s, Jack Kenling, who might have made more headfirst slides than Pepper Martin, died in Ocean City . . . William "The Refrigerator" Perry's ring size is a 23, more than twice that of the average man . . . Queenstown native Bill Dodd, who missed the 1988 Olympics by 0.6 of a point, will make another strong effort to qualify for the '92 U.S. rifle team . . . Bob Sommers, alumnus of The Evening Sun sports department, retired from the U.S. Golf Association, where he edited its magazine for 26 years. He will move from New Jersey to Port St. Lucie, Fla. (yes, near a golf course).
* Joe Gelmartin of the Phoenix Gazette, one of our favorite sports writers, says he once saw a minor-league baseball player, Gaspar Del Torro, who preferred to shower after games while wearing a pair of galoshes . . . Andrea Munster, graduate of Cathedral School and Bryn Mawr, earned accolades for her part as a project manager in putting on the Super Bowl spectacular in Minneapolis . . . Tom Curtis, who played for the 1970-'71 Colts, is publishing NFL team newspapers for the Steelers, Eagles and Dolphins . . . You're getting to be a "young old-timer" if you remember the bearded House of David touring baseball team.