Saturday, December 18, 2010

How could EVERYBODY get this wrong?

My friend RR pointed this out to me and he’s absolutely right. For all the Hot Stove League scuttlebutt, all the “insiders” who have access to confidential information, and all the baseball experts who can predict the future, nobody had Cliff Lee going back to the Phillies. No one had Carl Crawford going to the Red Sox. One prominent reporter announced that the Adrian Gonzalez/Red Sox deal was dead, just hours before the deal was done.

As someone who is also in the media, covering the Los Angeles Dodgers (although not from Hawaii, I’m not insane) I have to say this is really embarrassing. We work very hard to establish relationships with General Managers, owners, players, agents, scouts, and groupies. It’s disheartening to learn we know no more than the 50-year-old virgins who still live in their mothers’ basements and churn out critical Orioles blogs.

I mean, somebody should have had the Cliff Lee rumor.  Where are our reporting skills?  Is Cliff now following the Phillie Phanatic on Twitter? Did he give his Metro card to the neighbor kid? Did he immediately try to re-sell the autographed copy of George Bush’s new book that he received last week in the mail? There had to be signs. Did he make smores up in the hills with Roy Oswalt? I dunno, anything!

Clearly, we are not doing the best job. Even though there are 24-hour Cable networks, and satellite radio channels, and year-round publications, endless sportstalk stations, and major sports behemoths like ESPN and Fox with unlimited resources, major stories are still flying right under the radar.

So I say it’s time for a change. I say we get Perez Hilton to cover baseball. I say we put Joel McHale on the case. And whoever is responsible for Page Six. Ryan Seacrest would not let the Cliff Lee story get away. Neither would Cindy Adams. Take Giuliana Rancic off of Kim Kardashian watch and put her on Adrian Beltre.

I say it’s time we got it right! Even if it takes Melissa Rivers, the baseball media can not be scooped again!   There's still two whole months before pitchers and catchers report.

16 comments:

daniel in cherry hill said...

there are non critical Oriole blogs?

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry, what have the Dodgers done to improve their club again?

Mary Stella said...

We were stealthy. By "we", I mean the Phillies GM.

Halladay - Lee - Oswalt - Hamels

I can't wait for the season to start.

Don't be too hard on the baseball media. Lee signed with the Phillies for less money than he was offered elsewhere. Who could have seen that coming?

dgwPhotography said...

Lee Halladay Oswalt...

The GM must have been hiding behind a grassy knoll....

DBA said...

Agreed on Lee. Don't know how that happened with nary a rumor, but Crawford, that I definitely heard about it advance.

Cap'n Bob Napier said...

I like it when the media is out to lunch when a story breaks. Too many of them are intrusive, robbing people of their privacy.

Geezer Bob said...

Dagnab it. This reminds me of the good old days, before we went all wireless, cellular and computerized. You whippersnappers don't remember when news was reported AFTER it happened, instead of BEFORE it happened.

VP81955 said...

And as Al Jolson might have said, you ain't heard nothin' yet. The apparent winner of the Zach Greinke tradestakes is not the Rangers...not the Yankees or the other "evil empire," the Red Sox...not the Dodgers or Angels...but the Brewers! (They are obviously rolling the dice in Wisconsin in 2011 before Fielder and Weeks move on.)

As Rich Ashburn might have said, "Hard to believe, Harry, hard to believe."

Michael said...

The problem is partly with the way sportswriters work. As Roger Kahn once said, nobody goes backstage at the New York Philharmonic and asks during intermission what will be different about the second half of the program.

Thus, a story. At the winter meetings about 50 years ago, three sportswriters--as I recall, Stan Isaacs of Newsday and Len Schecter of Ball Four fame were two of them, and the third may actually have been Larry Merchant, as in the HBO boxing guy--were talking about the most ridiculous rumor they could start. They thought of it: Yogi Berra, then a Yankee player, to manage the Giants, who were looking for a manager. They started the rumor. Within hours, other reporters were on the phone to Yogi asking if it was true. Of course it wasn't. But it started him as a serious managerial candidate and helped lead to his managerial career. All because three guys decided to start a rumor--and that's still pretty much how the Hot Stove League coverage works, I think.

A punch line or postscript: I have read in several baseball books that for all of the joking and using him as a straight man, Casey Stengel deferred to one Yankee player in his time there: Yogi. He had that much respect for Yogi's knowledge of the game.

Twig said...

Why should we surprised? The conventional wisdom is a circular firing squad.

Good for Lee for taking "less" money...

jimhenshaw said...

I want to know where ESPN was. No LeBron "Decision" special. No weeks of expert prediction. Do Poker repeats really get that much better numbers?

jimhenshaw said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
willieb said...

You got it right, Ken. Doesn't matter if it's sports or "hard" news, they all operate now like the gossip sheets always have: rumor is fact. Just because you say it it's true.
Also, if the baseball world isn't aware of it just yet, everyone should be alert to how Phillies GM Ruben Amaro Jr. works. Remember last summer, when it was widely reported Roy Oswalt would NEVER, EVER go to Philadelphia, and would ONLY play for the Cardinals.

Anthony Hoffman said...

Please, never upload another picture of Perez Hilton. I've never seen a face so punchable since Glenn Beck.

chuckcd said...

The MLB Network reported that the Phillies were a late contender for Lee. So I wasn't that surprised.
I have plenty of time to watch it from my mother's basement...

Lou H. said...

I say this as a Phillies fan: it's a damn good thing they got Lee, because with Werth and who knows who else being traded away, shut-outs are the only games they're going to be able to win.