When you watch Ken Rosenthal report from the dugout on FOX or FS1, he is usually wearing a unique bowtie that represents a signature charity. The MLB insider has been wearing bow ties during games for a decade, but it wasn’t always his decision to do that.
On the latest episode of the Starting 9 podcast with Barstool Carl and Jake Arrieta, Rosenthal said that it was the higher-ups at FOX that ordered him to start wearing bowties in October 2012:
“I wasn’t inspired. I was ordered. FOX ordered me. I believe it was the 2012 NLCS (Giants-Phillies) and the order came down from the highest power on FOX Sports. They said they wanted me in a bow tie for the World Series. I had never worn one in my life. I started wearing them for the World Series with the help from some people at FOX, who would tie them for me because I did not know how to tie them.”
After that season, Rosenthal said he ran into a former football player who had a non-profit organization that asked Rosenthal to wear the bowties for different causes and it allowed him to make the best of the situation.
“That winter, a former football player named Dhani Jones approached me and he had this non-profit foundation called The Bowtie Cause. What they do is design bowties in partnership with various charities and he wanted me to be the person that represented them. At first, I was resistant. I didn’t want to wear the bowties ever again, but then I had a rare revelation. You know what, FOX is going to make me do this again, so I might as well get control of it.”
Rosenthal mentioned that FOX wanted him to wear the bow ties so he would be noticeable when people watched on TV. While the network ended up proven right, he wanted his work to do the talking, not the outfit.
“The idea that the people at FOX had initially was to make me stand out and that was the purpose of it. I hated that. To me, it’s the work that’s supposed to make you stand out….They ultimately were proven right because it does make me stand out and we turned it into a good thing for good causes.”
As for his reporting, Rosenthal prefers writing stories over breaking news because it’s not going to be something that another writer can confirm. However, he told the duo he understands people go to Twitter to see what news he’s going to break next.
“Over the years, I have done the breaking news and I’m sort of known for that as well. Yet, as more time goes by, the value of that seems to be less. Even if I break the biggest story I can think of today, that story will be mine for 2 minutes maybe before somebody else confirms it and the whole world has it. I still do it and there are certain kinds of stories that you can write that maybe no one else can touch and that’s a good break because it’s not a transaction.”
“There are a lot of people who follow on Twitter and that’s what they want, so that’s part of the job too.”
Ricky Keeler is a reporter for BSM with a primary focus on sports media podcasts and national personalities. He is also an active podcaster with an interest in pursuing a career in sports media. You can find him on Twitter @Rickinator555 or reach him by email at RickJKeeler@gmail.com.
Mike Francesa: George Steinbrenner’s Idea to Put Mike and The Mad Dog On YES Network
“It was George’s idea. So give him credit for it. He wanted Mike and The Mad Dog as part of the CBS Radio contract, and we were.”
Mike and The Mad Dog is often cited as one of, if not the, best sports radio shows of all time. The show saw an expanded reach with its partnership with the YES Network beginning in 2002. During his podcast Tuesday, Mike Francesa gave all the credit to the simulcast hitting the air on YES Network to the late Yankees owner George Steinbrenner.
“It was George Steinbrenner that came up with the idea of Mike and The Mad Dog being on the YES Network. No one else,” Francesa said.
“They came to us when they were negotiating a new radio deal with him and they said ‘Hey, we need a quick answer on this. Would you guys want to be on the YES Network every day, simulcasting? You know what Imus is doing with MSNBC? We wanna do it with you guys, but we need a very quick answer’.”
Francesa said the show airing on YES Network was a sticking point for the Yankees in negotiations with CBS Radio to continue airing the franchise’s broadcasts.
“Our first deal with them were not for a lot of money. Our later deals with them were for a very significant amount of money. But it was George’s idea. So give him credit for it. He wanted Mike and The Mad Dog as part of the CBS Radio contract, and we were. Our joining the YES Network was part of the CBS Radio contract.”
Dave Portnoy Reveals Back-And-Forth With New York Times Reporter Who Claimed He ‘Did Not Provide Answers’
“You waited till (sic) your hit piece was done and now you just need to say you gave me a fair chance to speak even though you have no interest in the truth and your article is already written”.
A story from The New York Times centered around “aging casino company” — Penn National Gaming — and its relationship with “degenerate gambler” — Barstool Sports founder Dave Portnoy — caught the eye of the face of the online outlet after the claim that he “didn’t provide answers”.
In the story, Steel claims “Penn and Barstool executives did not respond to repeated messages. Mr. Portnoy did not provide answers.” Portnoy brought the receipts to Twitter with a video of all of the correspondence he had with Times writer Emily Steel.
The alleged conversation takes place sporadically from May through November, with Portnoy offering to meet face-to-face with Steel for an interview that is mutually audio and video recorded, which Steel declines. She offered to meet Portnoy in New York for an audio recorded interview, which he declined, saying the interview needed to take place in Miami, because “I’m not running around to accommodate you at the 11th hour.”
He added “You waited till (sic) your hit piece was done and now you just need to say you gave me a fair chance to speak even though you have no interest in the truth and your article is already written”.
Kareem Daniel Leaving Disney After Bob Iger Reassumes Role as Company CEO
“This is a time of enormous change and challenges in our industry, and our work will also focus on creating a more efficient and cost-effective structure.”
Bob Iger is back as the CEO of Disney, and one of the first moves he made was to announce a company restructure. Part of that restructure includes the departure of Kareem Daniel, the chair of Disney Media and Entertainment Distribution (DMED).
DMED was formed under now-previous CEO Bob Chapek. The division manages Disney’s streaming services which includes ESPN+.
Daniel was considered one of those closest to Chapek. Iger announced Daniel’s departure in a memo to employees at DMED.
“It is my intention to restructure things in a way that honors and respects creativity as the heart and soul of who we are,” Iger said in the memo. “As you know, this is a time of enormous change and challenges in our industry, and our work will also focus on creating a more efficient and cost-effective structure.”
ESPN president Jimmy Pitaro will join other company leaders in coming up with a new company structure that Iger hopes “puts more decision-making back in the hands of our creative teams and rationalizes costs.”
Jordan Bondurant is a features reporter for Barrett Sports Media. He works full-time as a multimedia specialist at the Virginia State Corporation Commission, while also putting in part-time work for News Radio WRVA and 910 The Fan in Richmond. Additionally, you can find Jordan contributing coverage of the Washington Capitals for the blog NoVa Caps. His prior media experiences include working for the Richmond Times-Dispatch, the Danville Register & Bee, Virginia Lawyers Weekly and ABC 8News. He can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @J__Bondurant.