This post is in response to yesterday’s ‘incident’. If you’re late to the party, get caught up real quick and definitely let me know your thoughts. One thing I can appreciate is the views of anyone, whether you agree with something or disagree I’m always interested in hearing it because I do think it makes you more whole, more thorough and complete. Basically you can always get educated on something.
Yesterday was a little bit of an exhausting day for me. I’ve come to a few realizations. The first of which, I don’t like the term ‘blogger’ anymore. It’s got such a negative connotation that is attached to it. Secondly, I have spoken to the Reds and the person who I’ve spoken with was very friendly and appreciative of those who are in the ‘blogger community’ as they described.
At first I was critical of the Reds because I thought that they failed to see the value in outlets like this one and other great Reds blogs on the net who aren’t run by members of the media. As I had pointed out to me, I’m not a beat writer. I’ve never aspired to be. I don’t mind buying a ticket and reporting on what I see from the Moon Deck in right field; in fact it’s better that way. This started out a hobby and grew from there by no decision of my own.
I realized yesterday that it’s not all in the Reds organization that do not appreciate blogs and having nice publicity in the form of a blogger, etc. but rather a person or two who I think are tied up in the middle of spring training and trying to prepare for Opening Day, and failed to pause and think how flexing a stiff policy or finding a way to accommodate my request might be a true ‘win-win’ for all parties involved.
This might seem like just a bunch of fun on my end but to be honest it’s a lot of work and something I now take very seriously on behalf of the Reds, Major League Baseball, our readers, and the players I write about.
It reminded me of a post that I read on an NHL blog a while back, Covered in Oil. As I laid awake in bed late last night, I reflected on everything to discover what I was thinking and feeling.
Really I’ve made a discovery I’m not happy to have made. Before I started writing about baseball, I went to the games and I was on the complete outside of things. Now that I’ve gotten to know more people I realize that it’s a business and some of the ugly business formalities that exist.
Some might say ‘so what, they declined an interview request; not every fan should get to interview players’. That’s not what it’s about. I guess it’s about ending up feeling crummy about one of your favorite organizations and then in turn finding them just a little harder to pull for at the end of the day because of it. Not because of them turning down my interview request; but rather realizing that some there are too short-sighted to see what fans like myself (and there are many of them out there) bring to the organization and too spiteful to do anything but bite the hand that feeds them.
Now, I acted on a lot of emotion yesterday when I made the post. I was put off quite a bit by what I felt was a little bit of crudeness and curt responses when I’d been nothing but nice and tried to be accommodating. In the defense of the organization; something I considered after the fact is the team is in Arizona and they’re now some 11 odd days away from Opening Day. It’s a busy time of year. I can understand someone in the Reds front office having a lot on their plate and making an oversight. You just hope that it’s not a pattern with these individuals and you caught them on a bad day.
To wrap up my thoughts on the situation, I’m not sure that I like where the whole blogging thing has gone. Like I said, once you cross that line a little bit of the innocence of being a fan is gone and erased. You see that these guys aren’t just all heroes who head up to the plate and hit homers and not all front office people really value the fans. If you never did this (blogging) then you’d never really pay those things any mind; other then maybe getting snubbed an autograph or two. But you open up a Pandora’s box and you reach a point where maybe you lose the joy of pulling for a team or a player over a few bad experiences. I don’t want that.
I realized in talking to Jeff Pearlman last night that there’s really no writing and rooting. If you’re going to do sports journalism, blogging, writing about sports; there’s no room for being a homer or having favorites because you have to be objective to be any good. I’m a homer. I like being a homer for the Reds and honestly I don’t want to be mad at them because I’ve loved them since I was five years old. But it’s tough in this situation to be anything but disappointed in what I considered to be a short sighted loss of opportunity.
So am I questioning the whole blogging thing? A little bit.
You’d have to do it to know what I’m talking about. But there’s a large part of me that when I go to the park now I want the gloss to still be there that existed from my boyhood until the time that I was into college; and blogging and writing about baseball can do a hell of a job on tarnishing that glo