View Full Version : "Sox and the Media" Part II

Lip Man 1
10-03-2010, 07:22 PM

On this the final day of the 2010 regular season, the second and final part of my historical piece, “Sox and the Media” is now out on the main page at White Sox Interactive.

Here is the link to it:


This part deals with the new century and closely examines the way the Ligue and Dybas incidents have been portrayed by the media as opposed to the incidents of fan violence at and around Wrigley Field. We look at how the 2005 World Championship season was covered and the three incidents that caused Sox fans to scratch their collective heads. We have a section devoted to the lunacy of Jay Mariotti and another section that helps to explain why many Sox fans and perhaps some in the organization have a strong dislike for ESPN.

We also look at how things are today. To get a sense of where things are I spoke with Mark Gonzales, Joe Cowley, Chris Rongey from the mainstream media and Bob Grim of the White Sox.

Finally we offer two ‘bonus’ sections. The potential biggest Sox stories in the next three to five years and an ‘in their own words’ section about how some of the principles involved have talked about the media over the years.

I hope you will enjoy it.


Frater Perdurabo
10-03-2010, 07:59 PM
More great work, Lip. WSI is privileged to have you as a member. Thank you so much for your reporting.

10-04-2010, 12:36 AM
Entertaining read, Lip. Being both a Sox fan and an employee of Sun-Times Media, I was particularly intrigued to read about this topic. Thanks for all your hard work.

10-04-2010, 12:46 AM
Maybe I am reading too much into it but your comment about either Williams or Guillen leaving sounds like there is something there that is not in anyway baseball related. Once again a great read.

10-04-2010, 12:22 PM
More great work, Lip. WSI is privileged to have you as a member. Thank you so much for your reporting.

+1. Great work as always.

I agree that media coverage is much better today. I think the World Series win is what really turned things around for more equitable coverage. No longer could reporters just claim that the Sox are irrelevant in Chicago and nobody watches them.

It wasn't just in 2000 that the media was trumping up the attendance issue. I remember one of the local news stations (either Ch. 5 or Ch. 7) running a story in Sept. 2005 about how the Sox were still playing in an empty stadium despite their amazing run that season. They had a crew at the park showing lots of empty seats and the park maybe 1/2 full. But, the thing is, this was in reality a SOLD OUT game that they covered. They were showing the stands one hour before game time and saying "look at all the empty seats!!". I think they also managed to find some Twins fans to interview to agree with their assessment that the Sox had lousy fan support.:rolleyes: That report was completely ridiculous, but very typical at the time.

I also seem to remember that Paul Sullivan (I'm pretty sure it was him, but it was definitely someone at the Trib) claimed during the 2005 playoffs that there were plenty of empty seats to be found at the Cell during the post- season games. Wow! Anyone who was at those games knows that was total BS.

I don't follow every Cubs game, but two "throw garbage on the field" games that I remember were the Pierzynski 9th inning HR game in 2006 and a game vs. the Mets (maybe the same year) where the Cubs gave up 2 grand slams in one inning. That's two that come to mind without even following the team, so I wouldn't be surprised if it happen in other games too. Interesting summary of the fan incidences.....and funny how it's only Ligue that gets associated with a team's entire fan base.

What you say about Mariotti is correct. He was an anti-Sox zealot and was by far the most over-the-top in bashing the team. But at least he had zero credibility even among his colleagues. It was more pathetic when people who aren't total jokes make totally false comments about parade participants and playoff empty seats.

It has been a long, strange trip for media relations with the Sox and it'll be interesting to see it continue to evolve. Brooks Boyer is right, the Sox are going to see a bump in about 5 or 10 years when the kids who became fans during 2005 start becoming paying customers. The one thing that would help this even more is if the Sox stop playing 2nd fiddle in their own division and actually bring home another trophy.

Harry Potter
10-04-2010, 01:56 PM
When the Nick Collins vs. Bears Fan incident happened after last week's game, Fox 32 quickly rushed out the Ligue footage and aired it as part of it's leading story (about the Bears incident) because they are obviously related to one another. :angry:

The Immigrant
10-04-2010, 02:20 PM
Very entertaining read, Lip. Thanks for the great work.

One thing that I'd like to see clarified a bit are the details behind the 2004 "incident" between Harrelson and Mariotti. This was the first I'd heard of it.

10-04-2010, 02:38 PM
Great work, as always!

10-04-2010, 03:03 PM
IIRC, Jay claimed that the reason he stopped going to the Sox clubhouse was that a naked Ozzie, in his playing days, would emerge from the shower, go behind him, and start making pelvic thrusts.

I'm not so sure about his family going to his funeral. If his ex-wife and kids have something else to do, I wouldn't count on it.

10-04-2010, 03:59 PM
As always, great reading. Good job Lip...!!!

10-04-2010, 04:34 PM
Kudos, Lip. Great article! I'll comment on the ESPN aspect of the story as someone who lives in the DC area and has adopted the Nats as my NL team. Nats fans generally hate ESPN as much as Sox fans do and for many of the same reasons. It is interesting to me that ESPN refuses to acknowledge that geography influences their coverage, particularly when the network was founded by a UConn alum who was frustrated about not seeing enough UConn games on other outlets.

With regard to the attendance and "violence" issues, I will say what I have always said: Winning cures all.