XM MLB Chat

Saturday, May 26, 2007

ESPN types gossip & praise each other & call it "Journalism."

William Rhoden in the NY Times today takes a different route, headlining the latest baseball gossip in essence, THE MEDIA IS RIVETED BUT FANS DON'T CARE. Shockingly, Mr. Rhoden mentions a baseball player OTHER THAN JASON GIAMBI. And to top it off, NOT EVEN A YANKEE! Wow, here's a reporter who does some work. Rhoden:

  • "So as a reward for a breakthrough season, (Gary) Matthews signed a contract with the Los Angeles Angels worth $50 million. He seemed to be on the way to being one of baseball’s positives.

But earlier this year, Matthews was pulled into the ever-widening vortex of performance-enhancing drugs when his name was linked to an illegal steroid ring.

  • Matthews continues to insist that he is innocent, but his reputation has been tarnished. In the coming months, more names — some expected, some not — will trickle out as the ever-expanding net widens.

The question I find myself asking with greater frequency is, how many fans truly care? That is, how many care enough to stay away?

  • In the N.F.L., where there is no test for human-growth hormone and players are as big as buildings, attendance is soaring."
  • THANKS, MR. RHODEN. ALL THE ESPN BASEBALL GUYS AND NY DAILY NEWS GUYS WOULD ACTUALLY HAVE TO DO SOME WORK IF THEY EXAMINED THE PARADOXES HERE, AS TIM MARCHMAN OF 'THE SUN' DID. (sm)

"We have not come close to determining the extent of performance-enhancing drugs in baseball. Yet, despite the disclosures and innuendo, fans are flocking to baseball games in record numbers.

  • Where’s the outrage? There is none.

For one, we get performance enhancement. It surrounds us, thanks to advances, mostly legal. We heal quicker and live a little longer."

Then Rhoden says,

"The steroids story is a greater passion for those of us who cover the games, who write the stories and are charged with the responsibility of validating a player’s authenticity. We made heroes out of certain players — literally named a highway after one — and had to tear it down."

Yes, you guys are enthralled with it, but I DON'T LOOK TO ANY OF YOU TO VALIDATE A PLAYER'S AUTHENTICITY. THIS IS THE PROBLEM-- JOURNALISTS AND OTHERS HAVE THE IDEA THEY ARE SEEN AS JUDGES, VALIDATORS, EVEN OWNERS OF SUPERIOR MORAL CHARACTER (this last part has been said by BBWAA members--of course that's ridiculous). Here Mr. Rhoden is bestowing a judicial position on himself for which he may in fact be qualified, but that's something that can only be decided by others. JOURNALISTS have to be vetted, as they're all quite human. Just look at the Dallas Press Club scandal that's been going on for a few years. Please.

  • (On a slightly different angle, Curt Schilling has used his own direct communication with media and fans, circumventing what he felt were unreliable members of the press. From what I read, they continue to take shots at him for that).
The biggest goof to me is even with Mr. Rhoden, the press guys think obtaining leaked confidential, legally bound data on baseball players is the essence of "journalism," that this is the best use of their skill, digging and uncovering. But IT'S NOT--IT'S THE LAZIEST, MOST UNETHICAL IF NOT ILLEGAL WAY TO GET SENSATIONAL HEADLINES AND PRAISE FROM OTHER PRESS GUYS. He continues,
  • "Steroids use is the perfect story, a whodunit, a dig for truth and rationale and a much-needed tracing of the roots of performance-enhancing drug use in sports. This has become a more passionate issue for journalists than for fans, peeling away layer after layer of deception to get to some honest answers, if not the truth."
Thanks for your effort, Mr. Rhoden, which was more than others in the baseball media. But you're not being passionate journalists here, peeling away layers. You're just waiting for some personal, legally protected data and a weak, corrupt person at MLB, Inc. to violate the law for you.

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