Mike Wilner To Call 27 Blue Jays Games

By TSM

Quick hit of the am, while listening in on Tunein radio on my iphone this am, I heard Jeff Blair announce that Mike Wilner will be calling 27 Blue Jays games on the radio this up coming season. WIlner sounded pretty damn excited, remembering back to his youth listening to Tom and Jerry on a speak under his pillow.

Here’s hoping that Cito stops by the booth to call a few innings with Mike.

TSM

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mike (in boston)
mike (in boston)
February 23, 2012 12:05 pm

best of luck to you Mike. i think he’s a terrible host and interlocutor but i have no reason to think he’ll be bad at calling games. I’m not quite sure what Rogers is doing with their broadcasts … Jerry and Ashby was a great tandem and it’s sad to see it tampered with.
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in unrelated matters, glancing at the front page of the Star, they list the opening sentence of some article by Dimanno. It reads: “It was a non-smoking household and those rules were obeyed. Not, apparently, a non-killing household, however.”

My god, she’s fucking awful. What an embarrassment to the profession.

Daniel
Daniel
February 23, 2012 12:24 pm

I’m a big Wilner fan. He’s rude and arrogant to callers sometimes. But I always appreciated that he based his arguments on statistics and reason rather than emotion. And he knows a lot about baseball.

Congrats to him on the gig! That’s a big break.

Brad
Brad
February 23, 2012 12:27 pm

Congrats Mike! a “true” baseball guy!!

Omar
Omar
February 23, 2012 2:02 pm

Tough to condescend to your listeners while doing play by play, but I’m sure he will do his best to find a way.

I wonder if Ashby will be doing tv for 27 games?

Mike S
Mike S
February 23, 2012 2:22 pm

I’ll bet our friend Ami Angelwings will be excited to hear this news

In some ways Wilner’s approach is refreshing because he challenges callers to back up their arguments with facts when they say something ridiculous…………but he takes it WAY too far…………….I wish I could say that I disagree with those that call him rude, arrogant, and condescending……………but unfortunately those are the words I would use to describe his style………………….having said all of that, letting him do 27 games won’t impact on me at all because I never listen to Jays games on radio

Martin
Martin
February 23, 2012 2:55 pm

I wonder if Wilner will be doing a combination of home & away games or just away games such as on the west coast etc…..

dennes7
dennes7
February 23, 2012 3:58 pm

Wilner will be ….worst announcer ….everrrrr.

No cadence, not a great baseball voice, will have poor pacing, i think it’s a bad move, they should bring up the guy from the Las Vegas 57’s, at least he’s practised the craft.

Not saying Wilner is a bad call in host, he has strong opinions and wants people to back their’s up, but man I don’t think that translates to a good announcer….If it’s me I send him to triple A for a year to work on stuff, and if he’s good i bring him back, but he has very little experience at it….bad move imo.

Ami Angelwings
February 23, 2012 4:39 pm

@Mike S I *am* excited about this! 😀

I do think Mike is a bit condescending to his callers though :\ It’s fun to listen to, but sometimes I feel bad for the callers that have good points because Mike is so used to dealing with callers who want to trade Bautista for Pujols that he’s starting to hear it in ALL the callers, and even if you have a point he agrees with he’ll put you down that you don’t KNOW things just by watching TV, and then he’ll re-frame your point and put it back at you as if HE thought of it, and that’s really annoying :\

The only way it seems to be able to get in his good books is to provide no analysis outside of “I loved going down to the park today, baseball is awesome, why can’t fans just enjoy baseball and not care about wins and losses” or “Adam Lind is struggling” and he’ll say “Yes, you’re right, he is struggling”, but if you say WHY he’s struggling, get upset about him struggling or etc, you get the Wilner smackdown >_>

I have to say that Wilner being a jerk to the callers who think they know everything though (if they’re off base, or talking as an expert on stuff they really don’t know anything about, like that guy who called himself a kinetic genius or whatever) is hilarious and honestly, one of the reasons I love listening to Jays talk. xD I get sad when there’s no conflict… but I know that my entertainment also comes at the expense of a lot of ppl’s egos when they call in. 🙁

Ami Angelwings
February 23, 2012 4:44 pm

It’s funny listening to Bob yesterday talk about how leadership is media manufactured in hockey and that it’s often qualities people project onto a player based on what he looks like, how hard it looks like he’s trying, etc etc and that’s all stuff that Wilner talks about too, and I agree with both, yet when it comes to baseball, Bob is the complete opposite. xD

Like, just the day before, Bob was talking to Zaun about the need for leadership with the Blue Jays, how Omar Vizquel’s leadership would fix Yunel Escobar (it’s weird to me why he keeps thinking Escobar is no good) and Zaun and Martinez always go on and on about the need for “leadership” about catchers calling games, etc etc and Bob is all for these things, but in hockey he recognizes a lot of “intangible” stuff is crap that’s imputed onto players.

When Bob said that “that’s all clubhouse stuff, and we’re not in the clubhouse” that was RIGHT out of Wilner 101 on leadership, and I find it hilarious how in synch they are, just not about the same sport.

sam in oshawa
sam in oshawa
February 23, 2012 4:48 pm

Wilner is no shrinking violet when it comes to an opinion,that’s why i like his style.Good luck on the new gig Mike…

Ami Angelwings
February 23, 2012 4:54 pm

I think it also depends so much on tone with Wilner too. If you sound emotional, anxious, angry, etc, Wilner automatically will dismiss your opinion or try to explain to you why you’re dreaming in technicolour or seeing more bad than there is, etc, even if you said the same thing as somebody else before that he was okay with. Last year, the discussion about whether to get Kelly Johnson (before we got him) came to mind.

Some people suggested getting him as a free agent or in a trade calmly and he was like yeah, that’s a good idea, I’m sure they’re trying to get him and he’d be a good fit. But the people who suggested it but sounded angry or panicky he’d be like “Kelly Johnson has XYZ stats worse than Aaron Hill, and he’s older and etc etc etc”

If Wilner reads you as a “Jays fan” rather than a “baseball fan”, basically how he hears what you say changes a lot.

mike (in boston)
mike (in boston)
February 23, 2012 5:06 pm

if TSN were smart they would get a good young beat guy to cover the Jays this year, and develop a post-game show of their own. I’m guessing many people would try out a Wilner alternative. Leaving his obnoxiousness to one side, the criticism that Wilner is not really objective has stuck around for the last several years. He was accused of being one of JP’s guys, and he’s also been accused of shilling for Rogers’ due to his defense of their off-season frugality.
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TSN already have the most interesting experts on their station in Law and Shulman, so they could really carve out their own segment of the Jays audience.

Ami Angelwings
February 23, 2012 5:09 pm

I think one of the reasons people keep accusing Wilner and Doug Smith and guys like that of being “shills” while also alternatively accusing them of being “too harsh” on the team (these aren’t the same people making the accusation) is because both pride themselves on being the “smart” person about the sport, that they understand the sport, and that their job is to make sure nobody gets too high, or too low. So if you get angry that the Jays aren’t spending money, Wilner will explain why you shouldn’t be angry, if you get angry about Demar Derozan’s play, Doug Smith will explain why he’s actually good, but if you go the opposite way, and you praise the Jays or the Raptors, they’ll also tell you why you’re wrong and that you’re being too excited, you don’t see all the flaws, etc etc…

Ami Angelwings
February 23, 2012 5:12 pm

Shulman can’t do a post game show right? :\ He’s an ESPN guy that occasionally shows up for TSN, not a TSN guy…

I dunno about Law, but I think he’s also a US guy with US media responsibilities and having him do post-game for every Jays game would be impossible also. (I’m not a big Law fan either, he suffers from WIlneritis but he’s even less flexible and personable.)

mike (in boston)
mike (in boston)
February 23, 2012 5:19 pm

right, i meant that in addition to developing a post-game show and a beat guy, they already have some decent baseball credibility with Law and Shulman. Those guys already do spots during the day (along with Griffin), and TSN could add some other people to do nights. it would be nice to have more variety in terms of Jays coverage on the radio side.
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in unrelated matters, how is that the FAN still doesn’t have a standalone app? TSN’s is great, and it actually causes me to read content i would otherwise skip. I actually read a Jonas Siegel story the other day! The FAN’s web content is lost to me since they don’t tie it in with their streaming app.

Steve
Steve
February 23, 2012 7:25 pm

Would those who don’t like Wilner prefer a baseball version of Leafs Talk with Andy Frost? I’m not a fan of either team but find the former far more engaging. The latter is so hopeless I often wonder if it’s a parody.

Daniel
Daniel
February 23, 2012 7:52 pm

“I think one of the reasons people keep accusing Wilner and Doug Smith and guys like that of being “shills” while also alternatively accusing them of being “too harsh” on the team (these aren’t the same people making the accusation) is because both pride themselves on being the “smart” person about the sport, that they understand the sport, and that their job is to make sure nobody gets too high, or too low.”

I think that’s a fantastic point, Ami.

Most of the callers to Wilner tend to be ‘Everything sucks, this team is terrible’ or ‘Everything is amazing, Lawrie should be MVP, etc etc’..

Mike (in Boston) – Personally I don’t find Wilner to be too ‘pro Jays’. He did get suspended for fighting with Cito, and was pretty vocal that he thought Cito was an awful manager. As Ami said, I think he just doesn’t have much patience for the ‘sky is falling’ attitude that many fans have (which I’m not a big fan of either).

I can understand why some don’t like him, because he can be very rude… but yeah… personally, I’m a fan.

Capn2patch
Capn2patch
February 23, 2012 7:59 pm

So who does the post game show for those 27 games?

Maybe through here, but I have heard that Ashby will do more TV.

Ami Angelwings
February 23, 2012 8:51 pm

Presumably when Wilner calls games, he still does Jays Talk. I see no reason why he couldn’t…

Bob
Bob
February 23, 2012 10:02 pm

Am I the only one who thinks Wilner is Steve Simmon’s Love Child?

cam
cam
February 24, 2012 8:51 am

Bob most days I would have to agree, however when Wilner was with Blair filling in on PTS, he was not too bad. I can’t say that I am overjoyed at the prospect of him calling Jays games though.

I really don’t have the same view of Doug Smith as others do; Eric however is a much different matter. I find him and Wilner very much of the same ilk. I actually think Doug Smith can be quite humorous with his opinions.

Rome
Rome
February 24, 2012 1:13 pm

I think Wilner is pretty much a homer. Sure he might be critical to an individual (Cito for example) but will not be critical to organization as a whole. Just like he will not give Thames the benefit of the doubt because he’s a Snider guy.

Wilner vs Frost, now that’s a battle. I will say Jays callers are generally smarter than Leaf callers, so Wilner has more to work with (maybe give him some credit for having a higher standards on who calls his show) Both shows are oddly entertaining. I will give Wilner this, I don’t think he’s nearly as smart as he thinks he is, but he is an entertaining host.

I don’t think TSNR will do a Jays postgame show, because that would pretty much telling everybody is not listening or watch TSNR or TSNTV during daily prime time slots. Sure TSNR should talk about it during regular sports talk hours but having a hour or so slot dedicated to a product they don’t have, I don’t think they would do that.

Roy Green
February 25, 2012 5:08 pm

Is it any wonder there are so many comments? This guy is a bit of a lightning rod – most of it for bad news. He’s an arrogant pr…. All I can say, as a longtime fan of Bluejays on the radio (I listen more than I watch), is that I’ve come to like Jerry and Alan. What the H… do we need with more Wilner. When he does the games, I’ll be going over to television.

Darrell
Darrell
May 16, 2012 1:04 pm

Amen Roy Green.

Jeff
Jeff
September 21, 2012 11:02 pm

Mike Winer is a Prick.

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