A class actAs a coach in professional...

THE BALTIMORE SUN

A class act

As a coach in professional hockey, I have had the pleasure of meeting many fine athletes, fans and media people.

I was most fortunate to meet Jim Jackson. In some cases, the relationship between sports and the media can be adversarial. This man, who was a journalist and a super dad, never had this problem. He wrote what he saw and heard in interviews, truthfully and objectively. I know your readers will miss him. I

know I will.

Gene Ubriaco,

head coach,

Atlanta Knights It is with a great deal of sadness that I read of the passing of one of your sportswriters, Jim Jackson.

In a long professional career dealing with newspapermen, I have enjoyed the professional courtesy with a large number of writers, none of whom was more helpful, more honorable, more pleasant than Jim Jackson. He was never too busy to share the news in my sport (lacrosse), nor more willing for a quiet moment of instruction to a young person learning the rules.

Your paper will be a lot thinner without his talents, but he left a shining reputation to your hall of fame of great Sun writers. We

are all the sadder for his passing.

Doyle Smith

Charlottesville, Va.

Season wrap-up

A brief summary of the Orioles' season:

* Big individual positives: Anderson, Devereaux, Mussina, Sutcliffe, Mills, Frohwirth, and Hoiles' power.

* Big individual negatives: Cals (as in Jr. and Sr.), Glenn Davis, Milligan, Horn, McDonald, and Hoiles' arm.

* Big team positives: defense, the pitching staff, excellent road record.

* Big team negatives: base running, clutch hitting, situational hitting, ridiculous home record.

At times, the Orioles could have used Earl Weaver as manager, as there were several instances when umpires' heads needed to be chewed off. Johnny Oates' laid-back style of managing just didn't cut it all the time.

Ed Hynes

Crofton

Give Cal a break

I can't help but respond to Leo J. La Fontana's letter of Oct. 4. Where does a guy from Great Barrington, Mass., get off saying that the Orioles should trade Cal Ripken?

Without question, Cal Ripken is one of the all-time greats of baseball who just happens to have had a bit of a subpar year after a decade of great ones. Nobody goes 10-for-10, Mr. La Fontana. Besides, at least Cal has led teams into the World Series and won; which is more than can be said about the Red Sox.

William Jorn

Salisbury

Thank you, Birds

What a ride! The Orioles were more fun to watch this year than George Steinbrenner begging for his power back. This young, solid team has been built for a long run at the top and I'm looking forward to every minute of it.

You can't imagine how much fun an Orioles fan can have in Buffalo -- a bastion of Yankee supporters -- watching the Orioles fly beyond all expectations. I could have won enough inside bets to buy a politician, even at today's prices.

I want to thank the entire organization for building so intelligently for the future. Keep that thought in mind.

I'm going to try to visit Camden Yards next year to sing the anthem with you. I'll be the one spending all the Yankee fans' money.

Phil Penichter

Buffalo

Bravo for the bench

To the guys on the Orioles' bench who made a brief appearance this season to pinch run, pinch hit, take a position on the field and sometimes start: Hulett, Martinez, Tackett, Horn, Mercedes, Parent, Segui and Dempsey. Thanks for a great season, the plays you made, the runs you scored and your overall presence on the bench from one fan who has high regard for the job you do.

Heather Banz

Baltimore

Baltimore Bays?

I think a good name for a future Baltimore NFL team would be the "Baltimore Bays." The name reflects Baltimore's ambience and culture that's known nationally.

Any confusion with Tampa Bay could be easily remedied by having a winning team! The team logo could be a sea gull or blue crab.

Vaughn Bratcher

Crumpton

Charlotte favored?

Regarding Alex Cousins' letter in The Sun on Sept. 20, I believe in essence he is correct. Charlotte is more likely to get an NFL franchise, but not for the reasons he mentioned. The real reason Charlotte will get a franchise is that Baltimore is already served by the Redskins. I know that true Baltimoreans will never accept the Redskins as their own, but the media already has.

The Sun, along with WBAL-TV, and WMAR, cover the Redskins as the home team. The Sun offers front-page coverage, once baseball season is over, and WBAL and WMAR show us the Redskins game, regardless of how bad it is. If we really expect an NFL expansion franchise, we have to stop acting like we already have a team.

Louis A. Schwartz

Baltimore

Boo Redskins

Fall is my favorite time of the year, because the baseball season is ending and football season starts. I love sitting home on Sunday afternoons watching football. But this year so far I can't stand it because every Sunday the local television stations televise the Washington Redskins.

I am sick of the Redskins. They televise the game even if they are playing the worst team in football.

Take for instance, Oct. 4, when the Redskins played the Cardinals. This game was predicted to be a blowout. The Cardinals had not won a regular-season game in 11 tries. There were many better games that day.

The game did not get exciting until the fourth quarter, when Washington blew the lead and the game. I was loving life, when Mark Rypien had two passes intercepted and returned for touchdowns.

Keith Bachman

Belcamp

Fickle faithful

After reading the letters to the editor over the season, I have a bone to pick with some of the so-called Baltimore Orioles "faithful."

Let's start with Cal Ripken. I cannot believe the hammering this guy has taken. Some of you who don't like Ripken are the same "faithful" who, at the end of the 1991 season, were ready to make him the first active inductee to the Hall of Fame. You were also the same "faithful" who ran Eddie Murray out of town toward the end, stopped going to Colts games (no cheap-owner excuses please; Washington has tried those for 20 years and they still haven't gotten a baseball team).

Here are the facts: Cal is not a .240 hitter, nor is he a .320 hitter. In a normal season, Cal will bat about .280, hit 20 HRs, knock in 90 runs, play an above-average shortstop every game, and be a team leader.

Another problem with the "faithful" is judging a player's or manager's talent based on one game. Examples: Todd Frohwirth pitches a bad game, therefore he doesn't know how to pitch. John Oates makes a bad decision, therefore he's a bad manager. Judgments cannot be based on one game (maybe we should have George Steinbrenner run the club).

Scott Henry

Gaithersburg

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