Toronto Sports Media Morning Drive Lineups

Here’s your drive lineup for your listening enjoyment this am:

On 590 with Greg Brady and Jim Lang:

– Steve Maich, Publisher and Editor-In-Chief of Sportsnet Magazine IN-STUDIO
– Jim Barker, Head Coach & GM of the Toronto Argos
– Alex Anthopoulos, General Manager of the Toronto Blue Jays
– Kyle Williams, Pro Bowl Defensive Tackle for the Buffalo Bills
– Ron Wilson, Head Coach of the Toronto Maple Leafs

On TSN radio with Mike Richards

7:00 Dave Naylor
7:15 Jonas Siegel
7:30 Pierre McGuire
7:45 Dan Shulman
8:00 Darren Dreger & Jamie McLennan
8:45 Alex Anthopoulos


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September 29, 2011 6:29 am

Itll be interesting to read the post mortems on this year’s Jays season. Likely similar to the last 17 just with different names.
Just like reading previews of the upcoming Leafs’ season for the last decade. Fairly predictable in terms of jacking up expectations and assuming that each player will improve at last year’s rate and thar the newbies will blah blah blah. Pure propaganda from a hockey media that takes itself waaaay too seriously. Like working in this market creates an aura of self importance which clashes so violently with the on-ice product.

September 29, 2011 7:26 am

18 years of, “Wait ’til next year”, is getting freakin’ old!

September 29, 2011 10:08 am

Please don’t compare being a Jays fan to being a Leaf fan! (much like comparing the Blackhawks to the Cubs) —“92 and ’93 are getting smaller in the rear view mirror and there has been years of mismanagement and bad ownership since then. Rogers is not anything like a birthday present, but they were a definite improvement over the Belgian brewey owning Labatt and the Jays. I am sure they never saw a baseball game before taking over the Jays. I also believe Paul Godfrey and JP were the worst possible management combo this team could have come up with. Beeston and AA still need some time and have finally turned the corner on all the damage their predecessors had done….

As much as I disliked Burke before he arrived, he had a huge mess to clean up left behind by JFJ (He was another nightmare in Toronto’s sports history. His time as GM rivalled the the Ballard years for inspiring lost hope among Leaf fans and personifying the team’s ineptitude).

I am always negative about both franchises, but lately I feel a little more hopeful (as soon as Wilson is gone I’ll feel even better)

September 29, 2011 10:20 am

Did Brady and Lang talk this morning about how Sportsnet has announced their morning show will now be simulcast on Sportsnet TV?

Also that new Sportsnet logo is horrible. And another name change to CJCL (590 Toronto). Really?

Steve from Waterloo
Steve from Waterloo
September 29, 2011 3:58 pm

I was just looking for a 4pm update on the sports world, and realized I don’t have what I would consider a good, “go to” comprehensive sport site.

TSN/Sportsnet aren’t always up to date, and the columns can be on their for days. Canoe not so much, at least of late.

I thought this would be a good site to ask some of the readers what their “go to site” is? (aside from TSM of course).

September 29, 2011 4:40 pm

Here’s what I heard this morning, I cannot make this up:

Brady: Some of the Red Sox, fair or not, will slide down a notch in MVP voting. This will help Verlander in the voting.

Lang: But Granderson, my guy, is in the postseason, and if he has huge numbers, that’s gonna help his cause huge for MVP.

Brady: No, it won’t, because it’s voted on at the end of the regular season.

Lang: It’s voted on after the end of the regular season, but you can’t tell me…

Brady: But how’s it help his cause?

Lang: Because they’re human beings, and they’ll look at it, umm, and

Brady: No, no, no, the votes are getting done before the postseason starts.

Lang: Oh, they’re doing it right now?

Brady: Yeah, so the postseason’s not included.

Lang: Oh.

Fantastic. Brady needed a TV camera to look into and shake his head. The dumbest I’ve ever heard Lang sound. I have no idea how a sports journalist in any market would think that playoff and World Series stats would count for AL & NL MVP.

Umm, Andre Dawson?

It’s not the kind of thing to make me listen to the other show, if anything I love a good tearing apart of ridiculous logic or facts, so the more that happens, the better.

Brady then explained it’s “just like hockey” and the voting for the Norris Trophy has nothing to do with the playoffs. Good stuff.

Brady has several annoying run-on tendencies, but you can tell he holds back in tearing apart Lang’s arguments sometimes, and others he’s so annoyed, he brings the guns. Say what you will, but hearing Brady & McCown debate an issue, a big one, would be stellar listening. Kind of like unifying a heavyweight division.

If the Fan was smart, they’d find a way to do it, at least once in a while.

Ron Wilson interview was right after and was good. He’s so much better on the radio than he is in these confrontational press conferences.

Chef Mike in Burlington
September 29, 2011 4:48 pm

I expect the general tone of the 81-81 Jays postmortem to it’s usual slightly contrite, but still upbeat “building to next year” self, especially by AA. We’ll hear a hundred positive things and improvements, tempered with just enough of the failures and whiffs so he doesn’t appear dullusional.

I already heard Beeston a few days ago say that they finished as most predicted and that he was “ok” with that, and still pleased with the job being done by AA. I guess being 10 games out by the All Star break is ok…

The trouble is, even a plank like me knows that .500 won’t do it, not even to chase a WC. AA has already said he will not be in the free agent market and it will be more of building within, small trades and draft. His call, but the reality, and everyone on this blog knows it, is that this approach simply won’t get it done in the AL East.

Being a top half payroll does not gaurantee a World Series ring, but history shows it puts you in the playoffs the vast majority of the time, and that means meaningful games past August 15th, something Toronto is 2 decades past.

Maybe next year…

September 29, 2011 6:27 pm

I’m going to disagree with you on a few things Chef Mike

– On PTS the other night, Beeston said he was disappointed with how the season went. Maybe he said he was OK with it somewhere else, but in that interview he was not.

– Yes, the Blue Jays record has been nowhere near contention. However, the improvements and optimism around the team has less to do with the team’s current record (or how far out of the playoffs they were in 2010 or 2011) and more to do with the farm system, and the high ceiling potential of some of the young MLB players.

When AA took over the organization after the 2009 season, the Jays farms system was ranked among the worst in baseball ( They also had an aging, very low upside team that won a whopping 75 games.

Within two years, the Jays now are considered to have one of the best systems in the game. Keith Law recently suggested they might have the #2 system in the game. John Sickels, maybe the premier minor league analyst,
wrote last night that the Jays might have the best system in baseball: (

I’m not sure if you appreciate the gravity of that drastic a turnaround in two years. On top of that, they have a larger number of potentially high ceiling young players on the MLB roster than we’ve seen in years (not all will pan out, but you can be assured that some will).

I’m not trying to be a Jays apologist, they were a painfully mediocre franchise from 1994 to 2009 (at best). But it is a shallow analysis to base your optimism or pessimism for the future on Jays won/loss record this season. The behind the scenes work has been legitimately excellent (whether it pans out or not…they’ve been smart moves).

Even today Buster Olney mentioned AA in the conversation of ‘who would be the executive of the year in MLB’ saying ‘Alex Anthopoulos’s work is drawing raves from rival GMs’.

So, basically I’m saying – yeah, over the last 18 years there’s been a lot of excuse making for mediocre teams, I agree. I don’t know if AA’s plan will work or not, but it does seem far more deserving of optimism than Ash’s or Riccardi’s ever did.

Mike S
Mike S
September 29, 2011 7:48 pm

I heard the same thing as Julian……….I was shocked at what Lang was saying……….I am hoping that it was just a brain cramp due to lack of sleep (maybe because of the late baseball games last night)

September 29, 2011 8:30 pm

The sad thing about that exchange is that Brady himself is one of those guys who tends to rely on pukey sports cliches especially when it comes to things like the value of players to teams if you’ve heard him discussing Verlander over the last few months.

Chef Mike in Burlington
September 30, 2011 12:06 am

Daniel, I will take your post as fact, I was working on other things and I may have “misremembered” (couldn’t resist…) what Beeston said on PTS.

I will also acknowledge that AA inherited a big stinking pile that needed to be dealt with, and that takes time and by all accounts, he has been very effective in doing so at the scouting, minor league and farm system level, Law, Onley and others have all said similar things during this season and they are all more knowledgable then I ever will be (Getting rid of the Wells stinker deal was great!!).

I had the lucky break of being there in the right field seats when Carter “touched em’ all”, my buddies sister was sick so i got her ticket, it was incredible luck, maybe that night colours my perspective (it was amazing!!!).

Despite my “Jay Bashing”, I truly want the Jays to be relavent again, I lived in T.O. during the heyday and the energy was amazing. They were news, not just sports news, but my suspicions remain…

This is a team owned by a $12B company with $3B in profits in each of the past three years ($1200.00 a year of it mine). They have dollar parity, a stadium they bought for a song, vertical integration with TV and radio, are one of the top 5-6 sized markets in the North America, not to mention at least $70M in TV and profit sharing money before they sell a single ticket.


True, the Al East is a hard place, but Rogers could easily choose (spend) to compete (yes, money matters), but in 5 years of ownership they have shown no desire to do so.

Adults having a discussion and disagreement without name calling and insults…well done

September 30, 2011 1:41 am

I never really understood how Lang got promoted to a morning show spot so out of the blue. Never heard him do radio and his TV work never jumped out as somebody who would be great having hours of daily talk. The best part about Lang is when he says something absurd and you can almost feel Brady biting his tongue over it lol (seeing this on TV might be fun) Another recent Langism is that somehow he doesn’t understand a homophopic slur isn’t really about an insult to Avery but the term is towards others.

I think Brady is doing an amazing job, it makes the show must listen. Yes he can be negative at times, but I will take that over boring back slapping radio we normally get. He not afraid to go after the Jays, he was the first mainstream guy to really question “Colie” competence & the NHL inner circle of media & suits. He makes fun of the papers, TSN & even people on SNFan “Rasmus just needs an offseason to be great, just like Snider” & “Never get a reliever in free agent, just ask Dbacks & JJ Putz” mocking a couple of wilnerisms. Brady can be snarky, but very enteraining. His recent promo sarcastic readings for tickets to see Gerry Dee is hilarious.

As for the Jays, I just want a timeline, it doesn’t need to be perfect. But shouldn’t we know when things are going to get better. Media seems to complement him for not saying a timeline. But as a fan, I would like an estimate when do we start having more wins than previous season (which didn’t happen this season) when do we start being in the playoff race. Sure that opens it up for peope to call for a firing if you don’t meet the goal. But most I think can look at it and see “okay are we close to the timeline, if so lets continue. If not maybe we need a change” .

Right now we have no idea. Yes there are guys in the farm and are said to be great, but are these guys are going to be Snider, Lind great? A lot of Anthopoulos trades that looked like wins early on, kind of looking like pushes now with a lot more holes than we expected both offense and pitching. Oh yeah and the continued, “we will spend money at the right time”.

September 30, 2011 8:29 am

Daniel I also remember the Beeston interview in the same way as you. It seemed to me that he was talking about being aggressive in the off season to be able to compete next year. I may be “misremembering” on this as well as the goal of 2013 being the year where they can contend.

As for the restructuring of the organization by AA it has been impressive, but it has not changed the results of the on-field product for the Jays. Yes there are all kinds of reasons for hope, at this point but there are also some significant areas for concern. As you say not all the kids will work out and others will appear that are not on the radar screen.

It may not be fair, but there have been 18 years of futility and that will go into the mix when evaluating this team. I think Beeston gets it and not sure that AA does. It is great to stock pile “assets” in the minors and draft picks but that will not put butts in seats. I think the excitement around the team earlier this year has evaporated. In order to regain this excitement they must be seen to be active in the off season.

On a different note, there have been a number of criticisms on how the media has handled the Jays this year. I think the pendulum has shifted to more balance with criticisms as well as praise being handed out. The Rasmus deal is an example of a move that has been criticized to the point of asking if this is AA’s Kessel deal. Anyway, I expect balance in reporting and I am curious what others would expect to see the media do differently.

Chef Mike – I agree completely that it is nice to see an adult discussion without the name calling.

Gerry (Burlington)
Gerry (Burlington)
September 30, 2011 8:53 am

@Daniel, something I think you have to be careful about is how much stock is put in this ranking of prospects. The reality is that these are just rankings. The BlueJays could have the best ranked prospects for 5 seasons in a row, but if these can’t miss prospects turn out to be can’t miss like Snyder it means nothing. For that reason this team with all it’s wealth has to start spending.

Every young player this team develops seems to get free passes for an extraordinary long time, because we developed them.

This team is still far away from contending, starting rotation is weak, bullpen is weak, and positional players are weak. Adam Lind is still living off 1 years production how many years ago.

I really like Lawrie, and Rasmus is interesting but the list appears short of surefire success stories positionally.

I am hopeful all these young arms one day pitch for the team and pitch well, but until they do they are just propspects no matter how well ranked they are.

September 30, 2011 3:02 pm

Chef – I definitely appreciate what you’re saying! I want them to spend more money and become more relevant too. I’m more willing to give AA a benefit of the doubt than a lot of fans, but it’s been 18 years of nothing, so I get why people might feel cynical about the plan than I do.

Gerry – I definitely see what you’re saying. I realize that prospect rankings are just prospect ranking and none of these young players may materialize (just as Snider, Drabek, Morrow, Cecil, Rasmus etc might not take the next step).

But my point was more that – some people seem to be looking at the team and saying ‘hm. they won 4 fewer games than last year, the bullpen was terrible, there wasn’t much starting pitching – I’m more pessimistic about the future now. Why are people blathering on about how great AA has been?’

And the reason is the farm system, and the young (hopefully) high upside MLB players he’s accumulated. The (hopeful, as you rightly say) improvements he’s made are just harder to see because they haven’t resulted in a major improvement in MLB performance yet.

This team won 85 games last year and 81 this year with a TON of holes. I mean Corey Patterson, Jayson Nix, Jo Jo Reyes, Mike McCoy – all played a ton a games this year. If the Jays make some good moves this year (and as Chef says, spend some money) I don’t see why they couldn’t reasonably aim for high 80s/low 90s in wins in 2012 and at least compete for a spot.

Then, if the farm is as good as reported, plus we get an extra playoff spot, things could look up pretty soon.

All that said, I’m clearly being an optimist here. Who knows!

September 30, 2011 3:05 pm

Beeston said on PTS that they Jays now have enough prospects that they could probably make something similar to the Greinke deal last year. AA has talked a lot about dealing some of his prospect depth too.

If they make a couple shrewd trades, maybe some of the good work done into the farm system will pay off on the big league product for 2012.

I certainly hope so anyway. I’ll be disappointed if there isn’t an attempt to take a step forward in 2012.

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