E-mailer Jake kicks it off, with this apt observation off this week's news that a pair of San Francisco Chronicle reporters must give grand-jury testimony and could be jailed if they don't reveal the sources behind their coverage of l'affaire BALCO:
Barry Bonds. Isn't it interesting that Barry Bonds' personal trainer has spent time in jail for refusing to testify before the grand jury about Bonds and the possibility exists that the two reporters who broke the story (and book) about Bonds lying to the grand jury are being threatened with jail for refusing to reveal their sources? All the while, Bonds remains free to go about his business. I appreciate that he is innocent until proven guilty but it's more than ironic that other people have or will spend time in jail while the subject of the legal action does not.
Yes, it is ironic, but in the absence of a federal shield law, U.S. district court judge Jeffrey White said he had no choice but to order reporters Lance Williams and Mark Fainaru-Wada to testify and reveal their sources. That it clearly isn't a matter of national security did not dissuade the judge, nor did arguments that the reporting was in the public interest (it was mainly based on leaked grand-jury testimony) or led to Major League Baseball adopting tougher rules on prohibited drug use (dubious; there were others pursuing the story, too). The Chronicle immediately announced it would appeal. Meantime, the need for a shield law is the core issue behind the irony, and putting them in jail for this amounts to a serious case of overdoing it.
Steven Dykstra sends in a note regarding Chuck Nevitt off this week's Loren Woods farewell post, suggesting the inauguration of a new term: the Nevitt Line, a la baseball's Mendoza Line, "the place where awesome height crosses remarkable futility ... I saw him play live once—actually, I saw him warm up live once. He could dribble behind his back. I guess he couldn’t translate that talent to actually game time."
Steven was busy this week, also responding to Rating the Tubeheads:
1. Sportscaster most likely to make a million bucks in the U.S.: Jennifer Hedger. I can't believe she hasn't been snapped up by a national network in the United States.
2. Second best sportscaster in his household: Sean McCormick (married to J. Hedger).
3. Funniest anchor: Jay Onrait and Adnan Virk (tie). Jay has a great, dry sense of humour that drips into his broadcasts. His style isn't appreciated by everyone, however. Adnan seems to have great fun. I love that. He tosses around clever, hip references throughout his broadcast.
4. Best chemistry for an anchor team: Sid Seixeiro and Tim Micallef. Another set of guys that love what they're doing and it shows. Fun to watch, but not for everybody (my wife thinks Tim snaps back shooters just before show time).
5. Least chemistry between broadcasters: Jerry Howarth and Warren Sawkiw. Their styles are too similar. For Jerry, his smooth, low key, style works wonderfully; but Warren desperately needs some colour in his personality.
6. Most disappointing broadcasts: Blue Jays on Rogers Sportsnet. Trying to do things on the cheap, like the broadcasters don't really matter. Imagine, we once had Dan and Buck. Now we have Jamie Campbell and whatever scrub Sportsnet throws out there on any given night. C'mon, Ted, spend some freakin' money and get your viewers a dedicated, talented duo of sportscasters for your broadcasts.
There was more, but you get the idea. Good points on Micallef, who I quite like, and the Jays here. Pat Tabler does a decent job and delivers an occasional anecdote that tickles the spot, but there's an overall lack of personality and energy -- they all sound so interchangeable. Some continuity would be welcome.
Then there's regular Mark Freedman, recovering from back surgery and feeling bored as he counts down the days to NFL kickoff:
Question: Why did the Kings sign Loren Woods? I think I have an answer. There must be a place in the NBA for a inexpensive 12th man (since he's young) who will not see any playing time, keep his mouth and not whine about the lack of PT and take up space in practice. Woods has shown nothing in the pros but yet he's still getting an NBA salary when there are more established crappy big men available.
That takes us back to where we started. You can never have enough crappy big men.