Thanks to Cotillo, it’s a teenage monkeyland out there.
Among the professional journalism crowd, and I suppose all baseball circles to some degree, these “kids” are a constant topic of discussion. I have seen only one of these reporters break through to the mainstream, meaning he is likely the exception, not the rule. And he didn’t get to this point by being lazy. He got his foot in the door, took advice, learned rapidly and now has a bright future. Sadly, this is not the case for many of what I call “Transaction Monkeys,” the kids who frantically tweet every minor move that can easily be found on milb.com or any transaction website. Repetitiveness is not a skill, nor should it be rewarded.
Comparing conventional baseball coverage to how reporting functions on Twitter is like comparing a raw but hard-throwing pitcher to a cagey veteran. The new kid might be faster, but its command isn’t as good. The immediacy of twitter inevitably leads to inaccuracy.
““It’s a great tool for getting information and a great tool for dispensing information,’’ said Olney. “You have to remember that and not the five percent frustrating level between the tone of Twitter – it’s the twin of anger in a lot of cases – and certainly over time you can’t worry about how everyone uses it, because you’ll drive yourself crazy…
“I (Rosenthal) don’t want to give you the specific example because I don’t want to embarrass the writer, but there was a situation recently that began when something was reported and it was as strongly denied as it could be,’’ he said. “And I was talking to some younger writers, and I said, ‘Guys, when this happened when I was younger, when I was starting out … I don’t know if you’d get fired over it, but you’d certainly get in trouble. And now it’s just, eh, another day, let’s go. It’s just different. It’s different.”
Heavy-tweetin’ ESPN baseball writer Keith Law has been noticeably silent for the last couple of days. That’s no coincidence—he’s been given a Twitter timeout by ESPN, and we’re told that it’s for loudly and repeatedly defending Charles Darwin from transitional fossil Curt Schilling, his Bristol colleague.
It makes good business sense for teams to engage with fans where the fans can be found, physically and virtually. But while food, drink, and shopping posts on Pinterest will bring women to a game or a team store, they won’t bring women into the sports discussion.
And in the long run, that’s not good for women sports fans, women sports reporters, or for sports and our broader, more informed conversations about them.
The article is an interesting read but…does it really matter? I come from a baseball loving family. My mother and sisters love baseball. They love going to the ballpark and watch games on TV. So does my wife. I know many women who love the sport more than my family. Most of them aren’t consumers of sports news, though. From the little demographic info I have, this site attracts very few women.The ones we do have are very knowledgeable. Their participation adds to the site. Again, though, does it really matter? People gravitate toward things which interest them. Like many of the women I know, my sisters’ online interests include fashion and celebrity gossip. Is the fact that I don’t share those interests a problem?
I enjoy the reporting of knowledgeable female reporters like Wendy Thurm and Susan Slusser. My sisters don’t have any idea who they are. As long as women like Thrum and Slusser can comfortably engage with other baseball fans and can build a following based on their knowledge and expertise, I don’t see a problem.
But this October, McCarver is experiencing the Series just like millions of other viewers by watching back home in Florida instead of his usual spot in the broadcast booth.
“When you’re working you’re so immersed in your work that you’re trying to put on a telecast or add to it without getting in the way of it and all the things that are involved in the business of baseball on television,” McCarver said.
“On the other hand, you pick up part of your life as the viewing audience. I haven’t been able to do that for 35 years. It’s kind of nice. I would imagine John Madden felt the same way his first year out. I don’t know,” he said.
...In a brief phone conversation, he praised the way Kansas City dictates games with speed and defense, debated San Francisco manager Bruce Bochy’s decision not to start ace Madison Bumgarner on short rest in Game 4 and talked about how the dominance of the Royals’ bullpen changes the tenor of the game.
But McCarver said his appreciation of the players rises when he doesn’t have to call the games. He cited Lorenzo Cain’s outfield defense and Bumgarner’s tenacity, which reminds the former catcher of what he saw from St. Louis teammate Bob Gibson.
“I had a chance to admire the players from a technical standpoint while doing the games,” he said. “Now the admiration soars because I have a chance to really analyze some of the things for myself and not necessarily for the viewing audience.”
Whose father this year is the district attorney? Is this our country?
If you take this pill, there is a gorgeous woman on a beach in front of a sailboat and three random flags (quidditch? idk) just begging to have sex with you. She can wait. She can wait all year. She doesn’t even know how to sail, so she’s hanging out indefinitely. Just get ... that ... taken care of.
Tuesday afternoon, before batting practice, Drew Storen felt nervous as he ascended an escalator inside Dodger Stadium, headed toward a place he rarely visits. Storen hopped off and walked into the press box, where one of his favorite people in baseball awaited. Storen was going to meet Vin Scully.
I love stats. I think the broadcasting of baseball games could be much better and more interesting than it currently is. This nonetheless doesn’t describe anything I have the slightest desire to see. But, you tell me.
The top task for Major League Baseball’s incoming commissioner, Rob Manfred, is to try to make a lullaby-paced sport that takes three hours per game relevant to the Snapchat generation. This season the league began installing a phalanx of gadgets and systems that will collect and analyze data about every sliver of action in every game, clearly betting that data will add a Twilight Zone-like dimension to baseball that no one can yet see. Claudio Silva, the scientist MLB hired to help make sense of the data, is authoring an academic paper titled “Baseball 4D.” Claudio Silva, the scientist MLB hired to help make sense of the data, is authoring an academic paper titled “Baseball 4D.”...
The goal, Silva says, is to have so much information, a game could be re-created completely by using data.
Baseball would come to exist in an entirely digital form, which could be manipulated by fans to perhaps create new games. You might be able to tap into a previously played baseball game and create a new game by taking charge of calling the pitches: curve, strike, changeup. Then watch as a real-time, realistic version of the game unfolds as you play. Or maybe you could do that through Google Glass while at a live game: Call a different pitch and see what might have happened in the live at-bat you just witnessed…
This could be baseball’s comeback… Or perhaps data will uplift a new sport, the way TV ushered in the NFL… Expect intense data to create a new kind of sports excitement—less visceral, more analytical—that translates a non-TV event into a perfect smartphone event. This could turn the Tour de France into a global obsession, and make bike racing as addictive as Candy Crush.
All this is still a great unknown. What is clear is that we’ve reached a new dividing line in sports. Newspapers, radio, TV, data. We are now in a new era that is waiting for some sport to claim it. MLB is stepping up to the plate. Let’s see whether it whiffs or hits one out of the park.
Why it’s great: Everything. “Homer at Bat” is perfection rolled into 20-some minutes. This episode aired early in the series life, but is one of the most memorable for how many baseball players and references are made in a single episode. From Mr. Burns’ crusade against sideburns, to “Wonderbat” this episode has it all. If you’ve somehow managed to miss this then it’s an absolute must-watch.
Here you see an internal Time Inc. spreadsheet that was used to rank and evaluate “writer-editors” at SI.com… Most interesting is this ranking criteria: “Produces content that [is] beneficial to advertiser relationship.” These editorial employees were all ranked in this way, with their scores ranging from 2 to 10.
Anthony Napoli, a union representative with the Newspaper Guild, tells us: “Time Inc. actually laid off Sports Illustrated writers based on the criteria listed on that chart. Writers who may have high assessments for their writing ability, which is their job, were in fact terminated based on the fact the company believed their stories did not ‘produce content that is beneficial to advertiser relationships.’”
When the lords of baseball take to a Baltimore boardroom today to vote on a new commissioner, the least-heralded candidate will carry into the election a most unbecoming title: King of the Blackouts. Much of Tim Brosnan’s candidacy, in fact, rests on his turning baseball into a $9 billion-a-year monolith as executive VP of business on the back of fat television contracts that leave fans all over the country unable to watch the very sport he’s in charge of selling to the public.
The fact that baseball owners revere this – that a sport hemorrhaging young fans actively chooses to black out local television games across the country in order to protect the supposed sanctity of the local TV deals that go into the billions – speaks to a certain tone-deafness. Consider the hilarity of the rogue candidate for commissioner, Boston Red Sox chairman Tom Werner, selling himself as the person who will spread the game best. The impetus behind Werner’s candidacy is the Red Sox want to tilt the revenue sharing of their huge TV deal even more in their favor….
Surely, of course, baseball could find a way to package all of its games to all of its fans in the sort of fashion that eventually brings back whatever business it might lose in the short-term. The league’s gravy train chugs along too well for MLB to actively derail it.
So it’s going to take some fans and a judge who believes the current rules are anticompetitive and that “clubs in each League have entered an express agreement to limit competition between the clubs – and their broadcaster affiliates – based on geographic territories. There is also evidence of a negative impact on the output, price, and perhaps even quality of sports programming.”
Robert S. Castellini, the 46-year-old son of Reds owner Bob Castellini, and his wife Deanna were arrested and charged with domestic violence for fighting in front of their children.
Crime reporter Kimball Perry was all over the story, as he has a long history of detailing the crayist of the cray in Hamilton County courtrooms, reporting on Monday that both Robert and Deanna went in front of a judge that morning and how court documents described “visible scratch marks around the neck of Ms. Castellini” and Robert having “visible scratches around his neck and shoulder.
Despite such drama and intrigue — three Castellinis work in the Reds front office and Robert’s lawyer is Hamilton County GOP chairman Alex Triantafilou — The Enquirer appears to have pulled the story from its website as of Tuesday afternoon.
Jim Bowden, former MLB executive, has fashioned himself a second career as a baseball pundit for ESPN and SiriusXM radio. Today, baseball’s biggest day for movement, trade deadline day, Bowden appears to have gotten caught stealing a scoop without attribution. We know because he unwittingly stole it from a fake account.
At 1:48, someone impersonating the New York Post’s Joel Sherman tweeted that the Yankees have acquired Marlon Byrd from the Phillies. It is a fake account—the “L” is actually an “I.”
...Two minutes later Bowden tweeted Byrd-to-Yankees. He did not credit who he thought was Sherman. (This was, no question, Bowden’s Twitter account. It had 92,000 followers and is the one linked and endorsed on his ESPN.com page.)
... Jim Bowden panicked.
He first deleted his twitter photo so @JimBowdenESPNxm had an egg avatar and looked fake.
He then transferred his account to @JimBowdiv, perhaps thinking no one would find him? (His Marlon Byrd tweet is was still there.)
His original, @JimBowdenESPNxm account was nuked, but it is now back—with 25 followers at press time. Someone is cybersquatting the account, is using Bowden’s old avatar, and is following fake Joel Sherman and no one else.
And just now, since I’ve been typing, @JimBowdiv has disappeared. We don’t know where Jim Bowden went, and he’s probably not going to receive the DMs we sent him. (Update: @JimBowdiv is back. For now. Here’s a screengrab of his page, because he’s a slippery Bowdiv. There’s an updating thread in the comments below.)
Major League Baseball’s arbitration panel ruled in favor of the Washington Nationals in their longstanding, contentious dispute with the Baltimore Orioles over television rights fees from the Mid-Atlantic Sports Network, a person familiar with the situation confirmed Tuesday afternoon.
The person would not reveal the terms of the June 30 ruling that might only begin a new, litigious chapter in the acrimonious, years-long squabble over profits from MASN. Last week in New York’s Supreme Court, the Nationals filed a motion against MASN, which is majority-owned by the Orioles; that case has been sealed. MLB, the Orioles and MASN acknowledged the dispute remains unsettled in official statements issued Tuesday….
The Orioles believe MLB stands to gain financially by the ruling in the Nationals’ favor. Rights fees and profits from television networks are viewed separately by MLB. Money earned from rights fees is subject to MLB’s revenue sharing agreement. Profit earned by a team-owned television network is not. If the Nationals received a larger rights fee, then, some of it would trickle back to MLB.
“The way things are now, MLB is the judge of a deal it created and has a vested interest in,” a person familiar with the Orioles’ thinking said. “As far as we’re concerned, this should be an independent, objective review of the facts.”
A couple of short stories about Asian pitchers and Irabu: I was announcing Yankee games in the mid-90s when I said over the air, “I wonder if we’ll ever see an Oriental position player in the Major Leagues?” Dion James was playing for the Yankees at the time, and told me about an exciting 19-year old named Ichiro Suzuki who had a chance to be the first. We all know that story. Big fan of Bernie Williams from watching Yankee games in Japan. Wears number 51 because of that.
So, I get a letter about a week later from an Asian baseball fan. Not a malicious letter but scolding me gently for referring to Asian players as “Oriental.” He said, “Noodles and rugs are Oriental, not people. We are Asians.” Fortunately for me, he put his phone number in the letter, so I called him.
We had a pleasant conversation and I told him I certainly didn’t intentionally say “Oriental’ as a slur or condescending remark. It was said innocently out of ignorance. He understood. I asked him if he would be watching the next game we televised. He said he would. He was a huge baseball fan and was complimentary of our telecasts on the MSG Network. I asked if he would please watch and listen in the top of the 4th inning. He said he would. I took the opportunity to clear up the Oriental/Asian situation.
...So, I’lll be keeping a close eye on Yu Darvish and see if he is finally the one to be able to challenge and dominate our bigger, more powerful big league hitters. For his and the Rangers’ sake, I hope he does. It will be good for the game and the Rangers profit and loss statement!
We release things drip by drip…and when I have my sewer bonds settlement statements ready for this year, I’ll release them!
Stuck at the unfortunate end of the debt-clogged sewer system of Jefferson County, Ala., you’ll find Houston Astros owner Jim Crane.
Fresh into his takeover of the Texas baseball team, Crane has been ordered by a bankruptcy judge to reveal details of his settlement with J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. over $35 million worth of sewer bonds that he bought from the investment bank four years ago—a personal investment that quickly turned to, er, garbage.
Those dirty details, which are not public, are what Jefferson County attorney are seeking amid their own fight with the bank over the complicated series of dealings that, with a little help from a corruption scheme that ensnared the county’s top elected leaders, left the county swimming in a pool of toxic debt.
Ultimately, the county—Alabama’s most populous with roughly 658,000 residents—filed for Chapter 9 bankruptcy protection, marking the largest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history.
Crane said he got stuck with a bum deal, too, according to court documents filed in Texas state court.
If you heard a loud thumping noise a few minutes ago, that wasn’t your imagination. It was me bashing my head against the desk as I was reading Dan Shaughnessy’s latest opus. Like all Shaughnessy articles, he channels his most emotional nerves to convince us that the Red Sox ownership (or whomever his target du jour might be) is wronging us. That their “cheap” ways are depriving us of a championship that we’re entitled to experiencing. Clearly, he does it for attention and notoriety, and perhaps we should all be immune to his shtick by now. For some reason, I can’t let go.
...Terry Francona, Theo Epstein, Jonathan Papelbon, and Heidi Watney are all gone, and we just learned that Carl Crawford had surgery on his wrist, which isn’t going to make things easier for his big bounce-back season.
I can live with all of the above – even if we won’t have J.D. Drew to kick around anymore – but I can’t stand talk about payroll limits and luxury tax obligations.
While Heidi Watney’s presence will be missed, I’m not sure how this will impact the team’s on field performance. If anything, I think the horny old baseball writers, like Shaughnessy, will be the ones missing her most of all.
Crawford’s wrist injury probably won’t make his bounce back season any easier, but that doesn’t mean he won’t be successful. The good news is that only the cartilege was torn in the wrist. Had he broken a bone, the outlook on his season would’ve been much less rosy. Recovery from such a procedure typically lasts 6-8 weeks, which would put him about 2-4 weeks behind in terms of Spring Training readiness. He seems to be a pretty quick healer, so he could be back even sooner. I don’t see any reason to panic until we’re given an actually reason to do so.
Adds Maury…“Pass the popcorn. The static’s on (again)”
File this one in the “broken record” department: prepare for yet another season of MLB’s blackout policy remaining in place.
The reason for the broken record? This story has been written repeatedly for years. A source at MLB said that for all practical purposes, the matter will likely not be addressed for the upcoming season.
For the uninitiated, the question is, “Why should I be concerned?” That depends on whether you are, or planning to, purchase MLB Extra Innings or subscribe to MLB.TV.
In a nutshell, there are two ways you can be hit with the “blackout blues”. National broadcast partners FOX and ESPN have exclusivity agreements in which no matter where you live, games are blacked out on MLB Extra Innings and MLB.TV.
...And about the national blackout policy, any chance that happens soon? In speaking with sources close to the matter, when asked if the possibility it won’t be considered until contracts are renewed with ESPN and FOX, the reply was, “Probably.”
And if the Rangers aren’t going to sign Fielder, the Nationals have to be considered the frontrunner now. Who else is there? Any team planning to make a stealth run at him probably would not have risked waiting until late January to make its move. The Brewers and Mariners have been on the periphery, but not as involved as the Nationals. You never know, but it looks like the Fielder sweepstakes is the Nationals’ to lose.
The process has been fascinating, and it looks for now as if the Nationals have played it perfectly. They held firm at their price for Fielder, and with the apparent (and stunning) relative lack of interest in one of baseball’s great sluggers, the market has come to them. They let agent Scott Boras dictate the terms of the Jayson Werth negotiations last winter. The Lerners struck back this time. Or at least that’s the appearance right now.
In the background of their discussions with Fielder lies the Nationals’ under-construction television deal with MASN. Like the Rangers, the Nationals could soon be expecting more cash from their rights fees. The details are few, but the stakes are explained in the story from today’s paper, with help from Chuck Greenberg, an architect of the Rangers’ massive TV deal.
The Nationals, experts say, can expect enough new revenue from their renegotiated rights fees to pay for Fielder’s potential contract – and then some. Andrew Zimbalist, an economics professor and sports business expert, said signing Fielder could enhance the Nationals’ argument for higher rights fees from MASN.
“I think it would,” Zimbalist said. “Somebody like Fielder offers the possibility of not only the team being more competitive, but generating excitement in his own right.”
Brian Evans should have made the Basketball Hall of Fame before Jim Rice made the…huh? wha??
Boston Red Sox legend Jim Rice, a member of The Baseball Hall of Fame, has just completed a new TV commercial which will promote the new single “At Fenway,” now on sale at Best Buy and Amazon.com.
The song, written and recorded by crooner Brian Evans, was produced by multiple Grammy Award winning producer Narada Michael Walden…
After debuting at #3 on Amazon.com, astonishing given the single was released in November, during football season, the commercial was filmed last Monday at The Groveland Diner in Groveland, Massachusetts.
...“Red Sox Nation is everywhere. This has truly been a D2F (Direct to Fan) campaign at this point, and we’re blown away at the response to the song,” says Evans.
ESPN will air some non-Tebow related programming this summer.
ESPN also will show the opening-night telecast on April 4 between the Cardinals and Miami at the new Marlins Park.
Former Red Sox manager Terry Francona will debut in the Sunday night booth alongside play-by-play commentator Dan Shulman and analyst Orel Hershiser. Play-by-play man Jon Sciambi and analyst Chris Singleton again will call the games on ESPN Radio…..
April 8 ChiSox at Rangers
April 15 Angels at Yankees
April 22 Yankees at Red Sox
April 29 Rays at Rangers
May 6 Phillies at Nationals
May 13 Angels at Rangers
May 20 Cardinals at Dodgers
May 27 Nationals at Braves
June 3-July 1 TBD
July 8 Yankees at Red Sox
July 15 Cardinals at Reds
July 22-Sept. 23 TBD