Whenever the 2022 Major League Baseball season begins, one of the more familiar, reliable columnists covering the sport won’t be a part of it for the first time in the past 25-plus years.
Ken Davidoff retired from the New York Post last week (his last day was Feb. 28) after covering the New York Yankees as a beat writer for the Bergen Record and Newsday, before moving up to national baseball writer at the latter publication. He eventually moved to the Post, where he was the national MLB columnist for 10 years.
He shared the news of his retirement from the Post on Facebook, accompanied by a photo of him as a student at the Michigan Daily, the University of Michigan’s student newspaper.
“For the first time since 93, I have no job, only this time I’m a lot less anxious about it,” wrote Davidoff. “After nearly 29 years as a sportswriter, the last 25-plus covering baseball, I have decided to shut down this chapter of my life and try something different. What exactly that will be, I’m not sure, although I’m already exploring a few ideas.”
“I couldn’t have realized my childhood dream without the support of family, friends, colleagues and baseball people,” Davidoff added. “Some of you cheered me on while work kept me away and extremely busy; some of you made the job fun while hanging out in ballparks, hotel lobbies and even Congressional hearings; and some of you helped me with information and insight. Thanks to all of you. See you soon.”
Unfortunately, after more than 25 years covering baseball, Davidoff’s last reporting was on the lockout not ending since team owners and players could not reach an agreement. As a result, the 2022 MLB season will be delayed for at least a week (comprising each team’s first two series on the schedule) and likely much longer.
In his farewell column for the Post (though not his final report, due to negotiations between MLB team owners and the players union extending to March 1), Davidoff thanked 10 people who made covering baseball memorable, including Derek Jeter, George Steinbrenner, Brian Cashman, Alex Rodriguez, Yoenis Cespedes, David Ortiz, and Carlos Beltran. (The column is behind the NY Post paywall.)
“Good god, did he give us stuff to write about every which way,” Davidoff wrote of A-Rod. “Just off the top of my head: the slap play and other postseason struggles (and triumphs)… two American League Most Valuable Player awards… a flurry of personal relationships … not one but two illegal performance-enhancing drug scandals, the latter resulting in him suing MLB and the Players Association! … Simply the best. If not for him, I wouldn’t have made it this long, though I would’ve slept more.”
Media Reacts To Nick Saban’s Comments On Texas A&M, Jackson State
“Saban’s comments and the ensuing rebuttals will be used to fuel content on sports television and radio through the offseason and likely beyond.”
Nick Saban had some choice words about recruiting in the NIL era on Wednesday night. The Alabama head coach didn’t just voice frustrations with the process. He called out three schools specifically for using Name, Image and Likeness payments to create an advantage for themselves in recruiting.
He said that Texas A&M, which signed the top-ranked recruiting class in 2022 according to a number of outlets “bought every player on their team.”
He said that Jackson State gave a player $1 million to come to the school. “It was in the paper,” he said. “They bragged about it! Nobody did anything about it.”
It is likely that he was talking about defensive back Travis Hunter, widely regarded as one of the five best players in the class of 2022. It should be noted that Jackson State Coach Deion Sanders has been adamant that Hunter did not receive a dime from the school or anyone else.
The comments created plenty of content on sports radio on Thursday.
Jimbo Fischer, the head coach of Texas A&M took the story to a new level with a press conference of his own in which he cryptically encouraged people to “dig into” Saban’s career history.
The commentary in the sports media came in all kinds of forms. Plenty took to Twitter to express an opinion.
Others used the feud to create comedy.
Finally, others did actual reporting. they made phone calls to get context and further the story.
The coaches may be relatively quiet in public for a while. That doesn’t mean the stories and reactions are going away. Saban’s comments and the ensuing rebuttals will be used to fuel content on sports television and radio through the offseason and likely beyond.
Bleav Announces Partnership With SiriusXM
“The Bleav podcasts come with some serious star power. Each show features a former player paired with a host to discuss the latest news about their team. In adding Bleav, SiriusXM adds the likes of Eric Davis, Lorenzo Neal, Adam “Pac Man” Jones and others to its roster.”
A new partnership will see content from the Bleav Podcast Network come under the SiriusXM umbrella. All 32 of the network’s NFL team-specific podcasts will now be available on the SXM app. The satellite radio company will also have the ability to air Bleav content on its sports channels.
“SiriusXM is a leader in content. We’re very happy to be a part of their programming and continue to amplify the voice of our talent,” Bleav CEO Bron Heussenstamm said in a press release. “SiriusXM listeners will be able to regularly hear from athletes that played for their team, bringing fans insight and access that only a player can.”
The Bleav podcasts come with some serious star power. Each show features a former player paired with a host to discuss the latest news about their team. In adding Bleav, SiriusXM adds the likes of Eric Davis, Lorenzo Neal, Adam “Pac Man” Jones and others to its roster.
The deal will also lead to more content in the future. The companies expect to add to the Bleav content available on the SXM App, including shows focused on other professional and college sports.
“Bleav’s team-focused programming, hosted by many former stars from the league, give fans a unique and experienced perspective into their favorite players and franchises,” said Steve Cohen, SiriusXM’s SVP of Sports Programming and Podcasts. “Bleav’s network of shows deliver valuable insight for fans of every NFL team. They are a great addition to the selection of sports podcasts available on the SXM App and we look forward to adding other shows, focused on other sports, from the Bleav network to SiriusXM in the future.”
Dave Portnoy Offers Pat Beverley ‘Blank Check’ To Join Barstool
“Just say how many zeros and guarantee us once a week, you are hired.”
Minnesota Timberwolves player Pat Beverley turned heads with his comments about Phoenix Suns guard Chris Paul after the Suns were eliminated from the NBA Playoffs.
Beverley told Mike Greenberg and Stephen A. Smith on Monday that he thinks Paul is a “traffic cone,” due to his poor defense and that on nights he knows he’s playing Paul he’ll have a nice steak dinner and wine the night before. He said he’s in bed by 8 p.m. and doesn’t want to hear from his mom or girlfriend if he’s playing Steph Curry and the Golden State Warriors.
Pat’s comments got the attention of Barstool Sports president Dave Portnoy. Portnoy said Monday he liked Beverley so much that he would hire him to do a podcast for Barstool.
“If Pat Beverley is a Barstool fan and he’s watching this, he has a blank check. You name your price for a podcast, and we will hire you — no questions asked,” Portnoy said. “Just say how many zeros and guarantee us once a week, you are hired.”
Portnoy made the push to sign Beverley to a podcast deal as the company seeks to scale back the number of podcasts it produces. Barstool CEO Erika Nardini announced the decision to cut shows last week.
No word if Beverley has responded to Portnoy’s offer.