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Minihane Returns to WEEI, Discusses Hospitalization

Brandon Contes

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Kirk Minihane

WEEI morning co-host Kirk Minihane returned to the airwaves Friday morning after announcing on Twitter he was hospitalized for “suicidal thoughts” last week.

“I’ve talked a lot about my issues with depression, and I’ve battled it the last three months or so.  Last Thursday night I checked into the ER at Winchester Hospital with suicidal thoughts.  I was then moved to McLean, where I was treated and released earlier this week,” Minihane wrote on Twitter Thursday afternoon.

Minihane continued, “I’ll be back at work tomorrow, and I’m a little nervous about it. But I’m not ashamed or embarrassed. And we’ll do what we do – we’ll talk about it,” referring to Friday’s show.

During the second hour of Friday’s Kirk & Callahan Show Minihane opened up to the audience about his fight with depression and suicidal thoughts.  The conversation between Kirk and Callahan was so candid that as a listener, I had to remind myself what Minihane dealt with was reality.  Callahan approached the situation from a rational standpoint, asking Kirk questions about how could someone with young children leave their family?  To which Kirk responded by saying it’s a sickness, luckily he wasn’t as sick as those who actually took their life which is why he’s still here.

Minihane said he started thinking about how he would do it (referring to suicide) and the best way to do it which led him to focus on trains.  He rode the train a few times and walked the route, but Thursday afternoon Kirk went to watch the train go by.  He checked the schedule and found himself waiting for the train minutes before it came.  Kirk said “I was lying to myself, I think…in saying that I’m just going to go look.”  He began walking around for a few minutes and knew he didn’t want to die, but was struggling with what he was feeling.

“I felt for the past couple weeks that I was having a heart attack almost all the time, I was having a heart attack breathing and then I was also playing this character..A, on the air who was feeling good around my family, who was feeling good talking to my brothers, who was feeling good and joking and doing that, meanwhile sort of dying on the inside.  I said I simply cannot live like this anymore.  I have to give over, I have to give up whatever power I have and I drove the car to Winchester hospital, walked up to the emergency room woman and said, I’m having very dangerous thoughts.”

Minihane later said while he feels better now, he understands depression and anxiety is still something he will continue dealing with.

“The important thing for me is to recognize that I have these down times and tell people right away as opposed to hiding it and hiding it and hiding it.  It doesn’t benefit me at all and it all comes from childhood stuff like everything else, I have to figure that out, but right now I feel okay, I feel pretty good, I think I sort of have a temporary high right now because I’ve been able to talk about it.  Two weeks from now, three weeks from now, I’m sure I won’t feel great for a while and I just have to be honest about it.”

He acknowledged loving his job, his family and the support group he has to rely on moving forward.

Minihane also mentioned a lighter note that occurred shortly after being in the hospital.  “The security guy was a very nice guy, he was probably in his late 20s or early 30s.  I’m in there for about an hour or so and I’m a mess.  He comes up to me, shakes my hand he says, I just want you to know I’m a big fan, but I gotta ask you a question, what’s Portnoy like?”

Brandon Contes is a freelance writer for BSM. He can be found on Twitter @BrandonContes. To reach him by email click here.

Sports Radio News

Bobby Belt: ‘Pat McAfee Butchered The Name Shan and RJ’

“I mean, it clearly says on the graphics ‘Shan and RJ’.”

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Shan and RJ is a show that routinely finds itself in the media spotlight. They may be a Dallas show, but when Jerry and Stephen Jones routinely appear on your airwaves, you are going to draw attention from outside of the market.

On Tuesday, Pat McAfee played a clip of the hosts talking to Jerry Jones. McAfee threw to the clip introducing the show as “Shan, RJ, and Chop.” On Wednesday morning, the 105.3 The Fan’s morning show had some fun with the former Colts punter’s struggles.

“There’s a lot to unpack here,” newly added co-host Bobby Belt said after listening to McAfee and his crew take three unsuccessful cracks at naming the show.

“Reggie made a good point yesterday when I was talking to him about this,” Belt said. “Reggie was like ‘I think McAfee was going to the clip, saw three faces and didn’t know a third name, and so he’s like ‘well, that must be RJ and Chop.’”

Belt delighted in the idea that in McAfee’s mind, RJ Choppy goes by “Chop” on air and even pointed out that one of the producers said that RJ “looks like a Chop.”

Pat McAfee called the show “Shan, RJ, and Chop,” “Shana, RJ and Chop,” and “Shannon and RJ” on different occasions according to Belt. He didn’t think it was disrespectful. He just didn’t understand how McAfee got it so wrong so often.

“They butchered this three ways to the weekend. I have no idea. I mean, it clearly says on the graphics ‘Shan and RJ’.”

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Sports Radio News

Cubs Radio Voice Pat Hughes Named 2023 Frick Award Winner

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Chicago Cubs radio voice Pat Hughes has been honored as the 2023 recipient of the Ford C. Frick Award.

The award is given annually for “excellence in broadcasting” by the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.

“Known throughout the Midwest for his easy delivery and unparalleled knowledge, Pat Hughes has called some of the biggest moments in Cubs history and has provided the narrative for one of the most successful eras in the history of the franchise,” said National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum President Josh Rawitch. “Since arriving at Wrigley Field in 1996, Pat has served as the radio voice for nine postseason teams – matching an ardent fan base with his own passion in every broadcast. His reverence for baseball history and gift for storytelling have made him one of the game’s broadcast treasures.”

Hughes has spent more than 25 years as the voice of the Cubs, and is a nine-time winner of the Illinois Sportscaster of the Year Award. Earlier this year, Hughes found out on-air that he would be inducted into the Cubs Hall of Fame.

Hughes was previously a finalist for the award in 2016 and 2020.

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Sports Radio News

Craig Carton: Jon Heyman ‘No Longer An Insider’ After Aaron Judge Gaffe

“That’s a bad job. And all that is is a guy trying to get ahead of everybody else. He screwed the pooch. That’s embarrassing.”

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MLB Network Insider Jon Heyman erroneously reported that New York Yankees slugger Aaron Judge was signing with the San Francisco Giants in free agency yesterday. That news was not well received by WFAN afternoon hosts Craig Carton and Evan Roberts.

After Heyman rescinded his original tweet saying “Arson Judge” appeared headed to the Giants, he resent a new one with the correct spelling. During the confusion, Roberts told producers to get Heyman — who is an Audacy contributor — on the phone, which Carton immediately shot down.

“No, we’re not putting him on the air,” Carton said. “I’m not putting him on the air. He doesn’t get a platform on this show. Listen, he made a deal with the devil when he took a job with The (New York) Post. That’s his business.”

While Carton and Roberts processed the news, producer Chris McMonigle said he was certain that Judge would be signing with the Giants, but that was not Heyman’s report, and would hold off until it was official.

Roberts mocked McMonigle by saying he was in denial. “He still hasn’t accepted that Jon Heyman knows what he’s talking about,” Roberts said. Moments later, McMonigle read Heyman’s follow up tweet apologizing for “jumping the gun”.

“That is a horrendous job by Jon Heyman,” Carton replied.

“Heyman’s done,” Roberts shouted. “Jon, what are we doing?”

“Heyman is no longer an insider,” Carton added. “That’s a bad job. And all that is is a guy trying to get ahead of everybody else. He screwed the pooch. That’s embarrassing.”

Carton later took umbrage with Heyman deleting his tweets.

“To play fans like that is absolutely unacceptable. It’s not right. Sorry. That’s because everyone’s gotta be first. God forbid someone else has it first. You’re a clown. Your entire career’s work has just been flushed down the toilet.”

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