Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Bob Smizik: KDKA might end sportstalk

Bob writes in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that last week's dismissal of their evening sports talk host foretells more changes. The Pirates have a 50 year broadcasting relationship with KDKA whose present contract expires at the end of the 2006 season. This issue affects all radio stations owning baseball rights. Now that XM radio carries all 162 games of every team (plus postseason), the financial value of local radio deals has significantly changed. On XM earlier today, Bob said Pirates owners' recent player moves are geared to holding on to recent season ticket holders, but team plans to go younger starting in 2007. Other Pirates points by Bob: JIM TRACY IS MORE A MONEYBALL TYPE GUY, AS ARE SEAN CASEY & JOE RANDA---put the ball in play types---SAYS SEAN CASEY IS MORE OF A CHEERLEADER THAN A LEADER. Not a problem, says Bob, as he views BASEBALL AS MORE AN INDIVIDUAL GAME---PITCHER VS BATTER; TALENT, NOT CHARACTER, ACHIEVES VICTORY. (Sounds like a Moneyball guy himself). Says, Zach Duke, Oliver Perez, & Kip Wells will help the team this year & in future.

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