Toronto Sports Media Post Edwin Wrap & More

Toronto Sports Media Post Edwin Wrap & More

photo from here 

By TSM

 

Lots to talk about in the whacky world of sports media.

 

So, as expected since November 11:

 

and there you have it.

Edwin is officially gone.

This of course set off a bevy of activity before the Xmas holiday. Twitter exploded and then the real content emerged.  Some good, some not so much.

The best I’ve seen? This gem from John Lott over at The Athletic:

The deal underscored the irony in a remark Jays general manager Ross Atkins made during the winter meetings, when he was discussing, in general terms, the bidding for elite free agents.“It ultimately comes down to how much you really want the player,” Atkins said.”

” The days to come will bring widespread criticism of the still-new regime of Mark Shapiro and Atkins and the tediously familiar – and in this case, patently unfair – shots at owner Rogers Communications.”

“Atkins’ daily media sessions often left writers to read between the lines, but the GM’s murky verbiage made it increasingly clear that the Jays believed even their four-year offer to Encarnacion was risky business.”

“This is not on Rogers, which provided the resources to commit US$80-million to Encarnacion. This is on Shapiro and Atkins, whose showcase additions, so far, are named Kendrys Morales and Steve Pearce, and whose bullpen and outfield have big holes.”

This from Sportsnet’s Shi Davidi:

“The Blue Jays moved aggressively at the beginning of November, delivering their best offer just as free agency was about to open. Encarnacion had some time to explore the open market and get a sense of what other options he might have, but wasn’t ready to commit when the Blue Jays needed an answer.”

This too was good from Richard Griffin at the Toronto Star:

“The Jays set a deadline to accept their offer, but then reportedly extended it several days in order to give the Edwin camp more time, but Kinzer believed that other teams were ready to enter the bidding for more years and more guaranteed dollars. He was dead wrong and the moment passed. The Jays are now a lesser team because of it, and Encarnacion is in Cleveland.”

I loved this from Dirk Hayhurst:

“The baseball market, for the record, never plays by Equilibrium Theory, at least not intentionally. If it did, that would constitute collusion. Instead, baseball goes by the old Adam Smith maxim of every man for himself. It relentlessly pushes for the best options, to be the best, driving up the price of talented free agents. It’s certainly what Encarnacion’s agent, Paul Kinzer, expected. Which is why Encarnacion should fire him.”

This is really good stuff from Scott MacArthur over at TSN:

“Firstly, this is not a scenario in which club owner Rogers Communications should be accused of pinching pennies. The $80-million guaranteed offered Encarnacion by the Blue Jays will go down as the highest bid for the slugger this off-season.”

“Fans will be angry over the deadline imposed on Encarnacion. That’s absolutely fair. Here’s what happened: Shapiro and Atkins made Encarnacion the $80-million offer and told him they needed a quick answer. The initial deadline was extended, twice, for a total of about 72 hours, which gave Encarnacion approximately a week to consider the offer.”

“Encarnacion and his agent Paul Kinzer, however, were under no illusion. They’d been told by Shapiro and Atkins that the Blue Jays would move to make other signings if a deal didn’t get done. When the deadline passed, Shapiro and Atkins sprang into action and signed Kendrys Morales to a three-year, $33-million deal on November 11.”

The view from Cleveland:

No competitor has ever conquered Father Time, but the commitment to Encarnacion — who turns 34 on Jan. 7 — only has to persist for three years, and if his numbers are any indication, the Indians should feel comfortable with the pledge. It’s those six- and seven-year pacts that tend to truly cripple teams’ payrolls and flexibility. Encarnacion at $20 million per year for three years is much more of a bargain than Napoli at, say, $15 per year for two years.”

The most out of touch reaction?

 

and of course this from our beloved charged(until proven either guilty or innocent) assaulting scribe:

He had one career shot at exploiting the spoils of free agency. At that point the club had exclusive bargaining rights with Encarnacion. They could have sewn up his future fealty. But the braintrust of Mark Shapiro and Ross Atkins, cleaving to the false idol of analytics, tried a gambit so disrespectful to a proud man that Encarnacion shut down any further discussion for the rest of the year. You can’t blame an agent who ultimately misread the market for misjudgments back in March.

This is as good as when Toth took Canadians to task for only being fans of jr Hockey during the WJC’s.

Based upon everything out there and lots of banter here is what I believe:

I think Rogers approved the budget Shapiro requested.

I think Shapiro viewed the Jays as in need of an overhaul.  I think Edwin and Jose were exhibits A and B.  I think if they had there way they would have torn things down before last season but ownership was loathe to let them do that.

Why then offer 80/4?

I think it was a genuine offer and they were okay if he took it.  I think ownership supported it. I think they knew he would not.

I think they gave EE lots of time to consider; I think the agent had feelers out there for months on what his client could command on open market and he wanted that market to materialize. Hence the rejection.

I don’t know who rejected it though, was it EE or was it the agent who told EE to reject it.

I am convinced we will learn more about that point sooner rather than later.

I think fans need to give Shapiro the chance to field his team. It is only December 23rd.

I think attendance at Jays games rises and falls with on field performance. If the Jays are winning the dome is full and life is good. If the Jays are not winning it’s back to 12-15k and I don’t care how good the farm system is it will be panic city at Rogers. Not only have the Jays been a hit at the box office, they have likely saved jobs in all sorts of places throughout Rogers Media too. Radio, TV and online media sales all have been on fire during the Jays run.  Turn off that faucet and well it won’t be the ratings on fire. While I don’t think the Jays should listen to the fans, I do think attendance and ratings are of tremendous importance.

When Rogers Communications announced its third-quarter results in October, its biggest jump in revenues came in its media division. It was up by $60 million, or 13 per cent, over a year earlier. On a conference call with analysts, executives were asked how much of that was due to the World Cup of Hockey, which was new to the September schedule and had provided dozens of Sportsnet broadcasts. Rogers’ chief financial officer responded this way: “Third quarter is generally not a big hockey impact. What you see in the third quarter is really as a result of the Jays.” He explained further what a successful Toronto Blue Jays team, one that was in a pennant race through the late summer and fall, meant to the parent company’s results: ‘We continue to see … the improvements in not only attendance and all that brings in terms of revenue, but also viewership and the associated revenue with that. And so that’s what you’re largely seeing in the third quarter.” via Scott Stinson at The National Post

Last thing, I’d be stunned if Jose comes back.

 

Some random thoughts:

I know many of you have wondered about by pro CRTC ruling on Superbowl.  Look, I get it.  The network completely, and unfairly had the rugged pulled out from underneath them.  They likely pre-sold the game and now have to return the money and they don’t get a refund on the rights. That last point is take.  The league should either refund them in part (and they don’t want to do that see their opposition to the ruling) or give them a share of the US ads (also unlikely).

I know many of you say who cares, you can watch the ads online anyway.  That’s not the point. The actual game is secondary to the event of Superbowl and the commercials are part of that. Canadians have been robbed of the full experience for years and I think that’s crap.  The vast majority of the best ads (and total ads for that matter) are all for products and services available in Canada too.  Why the league is not forcing the USA broadcaster to secure NA rights for their ads is beyond me.  Dorritos are available on both sides of the border. Why not give the Canadian network a small cut of the ad buy? It’s not that hard.

I am very much against the protectionism of Canadian content. Let the audience decide what it want’s to consume.

I am told the Toronto Star sports section on Thursday was all of 4 pages at the back of the GTA section.  Is this what it has come to in newspapers in Toronto?

Yours truly is going to be at the Lakers, Raptors game in LA on New Years day. Anyone else?

The USA Today today ran 52 predictions for sports in 2017. 0 dealt with hockey on the NHL. Soccer, skiing, tennis, horse racing, golf, boxing, UFC, auto racing, NASCAR all listed multiple times  but no hockey.

It’s award season or holiday wish season and Richard Deitsch has a great read on the USA side of things here.

So before I (and Mike) give you ours, lets see what you got:

In the comments fill out your ballot:

Best Toronto Sports Media Member of 2016__________________________

Best New Toronto Sports Media Member of 2016__________________________

Best Toronto Sports Media Radio Host of 2016__________________________

Best Toronto Sports Media Radio Guest of 2016__________________________

Best Toronto Sports Media TV Host of 2016__________________________

Best Toronto Sports Media TV Guest of 2016__________________________

Best Toronto Sports Media Analyst of 2016__________________________

Best Toronto Sports Media Play by Play of 2016__________________________

Best Toronto Sports Media Colour Commentator of 2016__________________________

Best Toronto Sports Media Columnist of 2016__________________________

Best Toronto Sports Media Beat Writer of 2016__________________________

Best Toronto Sports Media Baseball 2016__________________________

Best Toronto Sports Media Hockey 2016__________________________

Best Toronto Sports Media Basketball 2016__________________________

Best Toronto Sports Media Insider 2016__________________________

 

COMMENTS

WORDPRESS: 30
  • comment-avatar
    mario 3 months

    Thanks for a great read and for all your hard work all year both you and MIB.  Lots to digest here with all that's gone on the past few days with EE. My  thinking is EE camp blew it when the Jays  offer was given which I thought was a fair one , but they chose to sit on it hopping for a bidding war. I won't be surprised if his agent is fired at some point  seeing how much EE loved playing in Toronto. Everyone loves to blame ownership which is fair and  they should spend more money , lets just see how much in the end? Time still to add to there roster hopefully some big names to come. Merry Christmas to all

  • comment-avatar
    Dean Strong 3 months

    Best Toronto Sports Media Member of 2016: Elliot Freidman

    Best New Toronto Sports Media Member of 2016: Kyle Bukauskas

    Best Toronto Sports Media Radio Host of 2016: Bob McCown

    Best Toronto Sports Media Radio Guest of 2016: John Shannon

    Best Toronto Sports Media TV Host of 2016: Ron MacLean

    Best Toronto Sports Media TV Guest of 2016: 

    Best Toronto Sports Media Analyst of 2016: Kelly Hrudey

    Best Toronto Sports Media Play by Play of 2016: Dan Shulman

    Best Toronto Sports Media Colour Commentator of 2016: Craig Simpson/Pat Tabler

    Best Toronto Sports Media Columnist of 2016: Elliot Friedman

    Best Toronto Sports Media Beat Writer of 2016: Barry Davis

    Best Toronto Sports Media Baseball 2016: Jerry Howerth

    Best Toronto Sports Media Hockey 2016: Elliot Friedman

    Best Toronto Sports Media Basketball 2016: Leo Rautins

    Best Toronto Sports Media Insider 2016: Bob McKenzie

  • comment-avatar
    Keith Snellgrove 3 months

    Best Toronto Sports Media Member of 2016: bob mccown

    Best New Toronto Sports Media Member of 2016: New?

    Best Toronto Sports Media Radio Host of 2016: bob mccown

    Best Toronto Sports Media Radio Guest of 2016: Richard Deitsch 

    Best Toronto Sports Media TV Host of 2016:  kate beirness

    Best Toronto Sports Media TV Guest of 2016: ???

    Best Toronto Sports Media Analyst of 2016: Elliotte Friedman

    Best Toronto Sports Media Play by Play of 2016: Dan Shulman

    Best Toronto Sports Media Colour Commentator of 2016: Jack Armstrong

    Best Toronto Sports Media Columnist of 2016: Newspapers???

    Best Toronto Sports Media Beat Writer of 2016: Again who reads newspapers?

    Best Toronto Sports Media Baseball 2016: Shi Davidi 

    Best Toronto Sports Media Hockey 2016: Doug MacClane

    Best Toronto Sports Media Basketball 2016: Paul Jones

    Best Toronto Sports Media Insider 2016: Shi Davidi

  • comment-avatar
    Big G 3 months

    I think It's time for Rogers Communications to divest of the Jays. Rogers is a communications enterprise with fatter fish to fry then having to worry about a business that entails worrying  about free agents , grooming talent, injuries etc. From a content prospective I get it (Yes it's a media property yada yada yada ads and so forth)but from every other standpoint the Jays are just way outside the scope of what a shareholder of this company should even ponder, Not to mention the business certainly does nothing to share price, not even remotely. RCI is built on the back of it's cable and wireless business. The cable business right now hinges on it's massive internet business and it's nation wide leading wireless business that leads the pack by a long shot.

    Lets be honest I'm sure the family is sick of hearing the failures of the Jays and the name Rogers in the same sentence(Sorry the Jays will always be synonymous with the Rogers brand as long as Rogers is an owner). If I'm the incoming CEO I look at what  the Jays do for the enterprise on a whole vs the Poor public opinion towards  the Jays (which is usually tied in with the brand )and say to my board it's simply not worth it.(Heck, the incoming CEO ran a successful telco without owning a sports team.) I guess this is why there is pretty much no publically traded companies in sports with these kind of holdings. The reward just does not meet the investment. Parent companies like to stay in the background as much as possible when they are running an operation and let the brand do it's thing, but with a sports team being such a public business it's impossible for Rogers to do this with the jays(how could they anyway anywhere there is a Jays logo a Rogers logo follows),If I'm CEO or a shareholder I say time to let go, time to send the organization to an Island with Shomi and IPTV.

  • comment-avatar
    WestDale Rocks 3 months

    "Future fealty"?  "Cleaving to the false idol of analytics"?  I'm not sure which date I'm looking forward to the most:  the next US election date, or Rosie DiManno's retirement date.  Not to mention, her absurd theory that the Jays "insulted" Edwin.  No Rosie.  An "insult" is what the Toronto Star does to its readers by imposing your writing upon the general public!  I'm no fan of the Shapiro/Atkins duo, but they didn't do anything wrong here.  They made an offer that turned out to be better than the one accepted by EE.  

  • comment-avatar
    Too Loose La Trek 3 months

    Jonah, how is protecting rights holders protecting Canadian content? The CRTC Super Bowl decision is about changing the rules after a Canadian network, in this case CTV, paid a premium for a major event. Your argument makes no sense. Give Canadians a small cut of the revenue? Seriously? The commercials are not "part of" the game. The real problem with this ruling is it's going to further restrict Canadian networks from buying US content. 

  • comment-avatar
    Original Mitch 3 months

    I think shap and boy wonder are to blame simply because they should have known an ultimatum is not a good business tactic. They failed at the negotiation process which is worrisome for the future of their tenure but hopefully they learned a lesson in business 101. The offer should have simply remain on the table. Don’t give me this couldn’t wait as if Morales was such a hot commodity. Had EE signed elsewhere (and we know now he wouldn’t) they could have worked out a plan B. They panicked and got screwed. Those two will be the downfall of the jays and all the money they brought in for Rogers. Oh well. You get what you pay for and Rogers went cheap in their management selection.

  • comment-avatar
    Shwaguy 3 months

    Edwin going to Cleveland and everyone dumping on ‘Shatkins’ is fairly predictable. What’s not predictable is whether they’re right and losing Edwin as he’s approaching his mid 30’s is actually the right call. I’m honestly one of those Toronto sports fans who likes to wait and see. It’s not like EE was in his mid 20’s. He’s approaching the age where baseball players begin to decline. ‘Shatkins’ decided they would make an offer and if he didn’t take it, they’d move on. That’s what happened. Does everyone forget a few years ago when the Jays “won the offseason” via the trade with Miami? Yeah – look how that worked out. Look at the last moves by the beloved Alex Anthopolous. He destroyed the farm to take a shot at winning. The Jays have almost nobody worth talking about in the minors right now. Why is THAT not a story?? The Jays were one of the oldest teams in baseball. Why is that not a story? This entire saga is being written from the perspective of the upset-but-clueless baseball fan. Outrage sells ads. Sound reasoning doesn’t. I’m going to wait until the middle of next season to reserve my judgement of whether ‘Shatkins’ did a good or bad job here, since that’s the only honest way to measure what they’re doing.

  • comment-avatar
    Original Mitch 3 months

    Would be a very valid point had “shatkins” not signed a crappier and basically same age Morales. I was all for them going in different direction, faster, more creative. Then they signed Morales so now they are just a much worse team than last year. I hope something can still happen but I doubt it. And we are critizcing a gm for going for a championship now? In a city starved for any kind of success? No wonder playing in Toronto is a pressureless place to play for athletes. Fans tolerate mediocrity and the media lobs only softballs

  • comment-avatar
    GreyCountyMike 3 months

    Thanks as always for the opportunity to chime in …

    Best Toronto Sports Media Member of 2016: Rod Smith

    Best New Toronto Sports Media Member of 2016: Kristen Shilton

    Best Toronto Sports Media Radio Host of 2016: Bob McCown

    Best Toronto Sports Media Radio Guest of 2016: Dave Perkins

    Best Toronto Sports Media TV Host of 2016: James Duthie

    Best Toronto Sports Media TV Guest of 2016: Bob McKenzie

    Best Toronto Sports Media Analyst of 2016: Gregg Zaun

    Best Toronto Sports Media Play by Play of 2016: Mike Hogan

    Best Toronto Sports Media Colour Commentator of 2016: Leo Rautins

    Best Toronto Sports Media Columnist of 2016: Steve Simmons

    Best Toronto Sports Media Beat Writer of 2016: John Lott

    Best Toronto Sports Media Baseball 2016: Scott MacArthur

    Best Toronto Sports Media Hockey 2016: Terry Koshan

    Best Toronto Sports Media Basketball 2016: Doug Smith

    Best Toronto Sports Media Insider 2016: Elliotte Friedman

  • comment-avatar
    windsor oldtimer 3 months

    Agent should be fired? Lol. They were always taking the highest offer other then Toronto’s. EE may prefer to play in the States where he has spent most of his career. He may want to be able to see ESPN, FOX 1, and ESPN deportes(all not available in Canada), better tax situation in Ohio, less border crossings and customs hassles. Fire the Agent!!! Merry Christmas and thank you for the great reads!!

  • comment-avatar
    stephen 3 months

    Best Toronto Sports Media Member of 2016: Friedman

    Best New Toronto Sports Media Member of 2016:

    Best Toronto Sports Media Radio Host of 2016: Tatti (pre & post 1150)

    Best Toronto Sports Media Radio Guest of 2016: Morosi

    Best Toronto Sports Media TV Host of 2016: Duthie

    Best Toronto Sports Media TV Guest of 2016:

    Best Toronto Sports Media Analyst of 2016: Zaun

    Best Toronto Sports Media Play by Play of 2016: Shulman

    Best Toronto Sports Media Colour Commentator of 2016: Ralph

    Best Toronto Sports Media Columnist of 2016:

    Best Toronto Sports Media Beat Writer of 2016: Lott

    Best Toronto Sports Media Baseball 2016: Lott

    Best Toronto Sports Media Hockey 2016: McKenzie/Friedman

    Best Toronto Sports Media Basketball 2016: Grange

    Best Toronto Sports Media Insider 2016: McKenzie/Friedman

     

    Re Edwin.

    If EE really wanted to be in Toronto, he would be. If Shapiro really wanted EE in Toronto, he would be. Blaming the greedy agent is just convenient – there's enough blame to be shared by both EE and Shapiro.  Although it's only Dec 24, there's no disputing that Cleveland is a better team today than it was when the season ended. Toronto, not by a long shot, there's no disputing that the Jays are not as good today as they were when the season ended. 

    This off-season will define Shapiro's baseball acumen; no doubt Tulo & Donaldson are watching very closely.

     

     

  • comment-avatar
    MjwW 3 months

    I think the trades he makes at the deadline will make or break his tenure with the Jays. Barring some surprise trades this offseason, I don't think the current lineup is good enough to contend for the division and might even struggle in the wildcard race. 

    But…the Jays still have a lot of players that will be attractive to contending teams, especially the likes of Donaldson, Tulo, and Martin. So, while I'm not expecting the Jays to be contenders, I think by the end of August they will have one of the best farm systems in baseball. And if Happ and Estrada can repeat their performances in the first half, they might end up with the best farm system by far. 

  • comment-avatar
    Gogo C. Claire 3 months

    @MjwW

    And when I decide to follow the Jays’ farm team and attend their games, then I will really care about how they have a great farm team.

    Great farm team usually means a crappy major league team.

    So, uh, in other words, they’ll suck for another five years.

  • comment-avatar
    TheLondoner 3 months

    Best Toronto Sports Media Member of 2016: Jeff Blair

    Best New Toronto Sports Media Member of 2016: (Newish) Ben Nicholson-Smith

    Best Toronto Sports Media Radio Host of 2016: Jeff Blair

    Best Toronto Sports Media Radio Guest of 2016: Brian Cooper

    Best Toronto Sports Media TV Host of 2016: Jamie Campbell

    Best Toronto Sports Media TV Guest of 2016: Stephen Brunt

    Best Toronto Sports Media Analyst of 2016: Jack Armstrong

    Best Toronto Sports Media Play by Play of 2016: Paul Romanuk

    Best Toronto Sports Media Colour Commentator of 2016: Pat Tabler

    Best Toronto Sports Media Columnist of 2016: Shi Davidi

    Best Toronto Sports Media Beat Writer of 2016: Brendan Kennedy

    Best Toronto Sports Media Baseball 2016: Shi Dividi

    Best Toronto Sports Media Hockey 2016: Doug MacLean

    Best Toronto Sports Media Basketball 2016: Jack Armstrong

    Best Toronto Sports Media Insider 2016: Leo Rautins

  • comment-avatar
    cirroc 3 months

    I would never accuse somebody of working for Rogers but that's way too many Sportsnet personalities to be real.

  • comment-avatar
    Original Mitch 3 months

    I agree. I know they dominate the landscape with their live events, but nobody likes SN employees THIS much. Jamie Campbell? Lol. Paul Romanuk? Lolloool. I know it’s personal preference I get that, but let’s be real.

  • comment-avatar
    TheLondoner 3 months

    I am entitled to my own opinions! By the way, I have a couple of TSN guys there, and a Globe writer. 

    In terms of my Paul Romanuk choice, he seems like a decent guy. I even liked some of his work when he was based in Europe. A question to ask is, what were my other choices? 

    I find Matt Devlin quite dull. Eric Smith & Paul Jones might be OK, but I'm afraid they are at a loss because basketball is not a sport that translates well to radio. Joe Bowen I would have put out to pasture years ago. I have never been a Jerry Howarth fan. I know that sounds like blasphemy. I don't care for Joe Siddall either, he just agrees with anything Jerry says anyhow and as a play-by-play guy he is raw. Mike Wilner, I am not even going to comment.:) I could have selected Buck. I didn't want to go with Dan Shulman because he is not really full time in Toronto.

     

  • comment-avatar
    Sam In Scarb 3 months

    Excuse me but i do not read sportsnet propaganda website much anymore and Fan/590 radio which usta be 100% listening and now is about 5-10  %.

    Question, is Dan Shulman coming back to do Blue Jay games on TV ? or was it a 1 year shot ?

  • comment-avatar
    Mookie 3 months

    I th Know ou are wrong on this one.  The fact is, as Jonah says, for this particular broadcast the commercials ARE part of the broadcast.  And paraphrasing, but if the Cdn rights holder can't duplicate the signal quality and programming in its entirety, then they can't sim sub.  This is precisely why channels such as TSN and/or Sportsnet can't sim sub NFL games over the US network channels.

    Sucks for Bell, which I could not care less about, but as a viewer, I want to be able to watch the broadcast, which in this one case does include the US commercials…and if CTV can't deliver the entire broadcast, then they shouldn't be able to substitute their signal ov r the US program.

  • comment-avatar
    MjwW 3 months

    So what? 3-5 years of pain and then you have a boatload of young talent that can fuel a Jays dynasty to rival Boston or New York. 

  • comment-avatar
    NefCanuck 3 months

    I'm going to focus on the Edwin issue because I think that's where the real story lies.

    Firstly, Edwin ultimately decides what Edwin wants to do, laying the blame on his agent presumes that Edwin cannot think for himself, something I do not believe in the slightest.

    Second, Shapiro has to execute a plan and if the pieces on teh chessboard (in this case Edwin) cannot or will not make a decision in a timely fashion, then he (Shapiro) has a duty and an obligation to the owners to put a team on the field that is at least competitive.

    Finally, while it may be the easy thing to blame Rogers that they didn't do "enough" to keep Edwin, they are the owners, they can barely manage their core products (look at the massive write down they are taking over abandoning IPTV) NVM interfering in any meaningful way in the baseball teams operations.

    Happy Holidays Everyone

  • comment-avatar
    P.M 3 months

    Best Toronto Sports Media Member of 2016- James Mirtle for his direction and leadership of “The Athletic”

    Best New Toronto Sports Media Member of 2016-

    Best Toronto Sports Media Radio Host of 2016- Bryan Hayes. I enjoy his hosting on TSN the most when it comes down to it. Jeff Blair is a close second.

    Best Toronto Sports Media Radio Guest of 2016- Scott MacArthur. Does he count? I think he counts for guesting on TSN 1050 all year. He deserves his own show.

    Best Toronto Sports Media TV Host of 2016- Jamie Campbell. I don’t think he gets enough credit for controlling Zaun.

    Best Toronto Sports Media TV Guest of 2016- Kevin Barker. His fill-in stints on Blue Jays Central are fantastic.

    Best Toronto Sports Media Play by Play of 2016. Matt Devlin. He defines the Raptors for me and I enjoy everything about his style.

    Best Toronto Sports Media Colour Commentator of 2016. Joe Siddall. He’s a fantastic colour commentator that I could easily see on a bigger stage.

    Best Toronto Sports Media Columnist of 2016- TIE: Bruce Arthur/John Lott.

    Best Toronto Sports Media Beat Writer of 2016- TIE: Eric Koreen/David Alter.

    Best Toronto Sports Media Baseball 2016: Dan Shulman.

    Best Toronto Sports Media Hockey 2016: David Alter.

    Best Toronto Sports Media Basketball 2016: Matt Devlin.

    I have to think more deeply about Analyst/Insider.

  • comment-avatar
    Pete 3 months

    Best Toronto Sports Media Member of 2016: Rick Westhead.  He's an underrated star.

    Best New Toronto Sports Media Member of 2016: N/A.

    Best Toronto Sports Media Radio Host of 2016: Bob McCown.  Still the king.

    Best Toronto Sports Media Radio Guest of 2016: Richard Deitsch.  HM: The rare John Salley interviews on PTS are gold.

    Best Toronto Sports Media TV Host of 2016: Ron MacLean.  Welcome back!

    Best Toronto Sports Media TV Guest of 2016: Craig Button.  I personally like what he brings to the table.

    Best Toronto Sports Media Analyst of 2016: Gregg Zaun.

    Best Toronto Sports Media Play by Play of 2016: Matt Devlin.  Enjoy his work with the Raptors and does an admirable job filling in on the Blue Jays side.

    Best Toronto Sports Media Colour Commentator of 2016: Craig Simpson

    Best Toronto Sports Media Columnist of 2016: Steve Simmons.  His Sunday thoughts are the only article I consider must-read these days.

    Best Toronto Sports Media Beat Writer of 2016: John Lott.

    Best Toronto Sports Media Baseball 2016: Scott MacArthur.  The fact I'd have rather listened to his takes throughout the summer than those at the company who own the team says a lot.

    Best Toronto Sports Media Hockey 2016: Craig Button.

    Best Toronto Sports Media Basketball 2016: Paul Jones.

    Best Toronto Sports Media Insider 2016: Jeff Marek. (when used in the role on the radio)

  • comment-avatar
    Jeffrey 3 months

    Best Toronto Sports Media Member of 2016
    Bob McCown

    Best New Toronto Sports Media Member of 2016
    Kristen Shilton

    Best Toronto Sports Media Radio Host of 2016 Bob McCown

    Best Toronto Sports Media Radio Guest of 2016 Ray Ferraro

    Best Toronto Sports Media TV Host of 2016 James Duthie

    Best Toronto Sports Media TV Guest of 2016 Jeff O’Neill 

    Best Toronto Sports Media Analyst of 2016 Ray Ferraro

    Best Toronto Sports Media Play by Play of 2016 Dan Shulman

    Best Toronto Sports Media Colour Commentator of 2016 Ray Ferraro

    Best Toronto Sports Media Columnist of 2016 Scott MacArthur

    Best Toronto Sports Media Beat Writer of 2016 Kristen Shilton

    Best Toronto Sports Media Baseball 2016 Jeff Blair

    Best Toronto Sports Media Hockey 2016 TSN

    Best Toronto Sports Media Basketball 2016 Jack Armstrong

    Best Toronto Sports Media Insider 2016 Jeff Blair

  • comment-avatar
    Antonio 3 months

    I'm a huge SHIL Davidi fan. He always provides a reason as to what crazy ass decision the Jays made. He's quick on his feet….. when it comes to an excuse (err, an explanation).

  • comment-avatar
    Rick in Barrie 3 months

    Agreed. Westhead does quality work.

  • comment-avatar
    Daniel 3 months

    Hey remember journalistic integrity?  it was good times back when the media had it…

  • comment-avatar
    Patrick 3 months

    Big fan of Cathal, even though he's left the Twitterverse. Edgy, thoughtful writing. 

    Shi D ok on the Jays beat. Can count on him for smart analysis of trades. (I'm so done with guys floating stories about teams "talking about" possible free agent signings. Get back to me when they are signed.)

    I bet Arash Madani would fit well into the full time slot hosting Prime Time Sports when Bob leaves. Madani terrific with his interviews, and sniffs out good stories, like the CFL fining players at Grey Cup for wearing wrong socks.

    Love Westhead's work at TSN. Stories are never anything you'll find at other places and for my money, is the only reporter who will chase stories like how the NHL has covered up what it has known about the impact of concussions on its players. Also, features on Ukraine and Venezuela were crazy good and risky at a time when other reporters like Shoalts are whining about having to eat stale popcorn and listen to bad music at the ACC.

    What I don't need more of? Insiders. How many times did Simmons tell us Edwin was going to resign here because he likes Toronto. Steve, when you're wrong, admit it. People will like you more for it. (Just ask Elliotte.) 

    Question I want answered this yr: How many times a day does Bruce Arthur's wife say, "Bruce, get the hell off of twitter and help me with the kids. People can do without your Trump takes every 5 mins."

  • comment-avatar
    yaz 3 months

    Anyone else notice how in the last few months the Andrew Walker Show has slowly (and unfortunately) morphed into the Walker And Bunkus Show?