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Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Shrinking population in baseball press boxes-Wall St. Journal

"Baseball's independent press corps, once the most powerful in American sports, is fading. As newspapers cut budgets and payrolls, the press boxes at major league ballparks are becoming increasingly lonely places, signaling a future when some games may be chronicled only by wire services, house organs and Web writers watching the games on television....
  • It's not clear how many newspaper beat writers and columnists will vanish. Some major dailies in baseball towns like Boston and New York say so long as they exist, they will never stop covering their teams. Online-only sources have filled some of the void, and independent Web sites have popped up where fans gather to comment on the games as they happen. In many ways,
  • baseball writers are no different than other professionals whose industries are being shrunk....
Their exalted status gave rank-and-file BBWAA members unusual powers, from being assured entry to clubhouses and press box seats at the World Series to electing players to baseball's Hall of Fame. After 10 years, BBWAA members are given certain perks that continue even after retirement.... Still, some major dailies are not about to take reporters off the baseball beat. The cash-strapped Boston Herald has cut its city desk by more than half in the past five years, but tinkering with Red Sox coverage "was never really an option," said Tony Massarotti, who covered the team for the Herald for nearly 15 years before moving to the rival Globe last fall."...'Baseball Writers Brace for the End,' Wall St. Journal by Russell Adams and Tim Marchman, 4/7/09. via Poynter.org/Romenesko

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