Monday, July 15, 2013

Washington Post Sports Watch: Some stuff I liked, and a couple complaints

I don't just want to criticize the Post all the time, so today, I'll give you some stuff I liked in the Post sports section over the last few days.

I thought this post by Adam Kilgore on whether the Nationals should trade for a starter was pretty interesting because it put the Nats' current deficit in perspective--that if the Braves continue on their current pace, the Nats have to play really well to catch them.

James Wagner's piece on speeding up the pace of play in baseball was good (he even got a quote from former National Gary Majewski!), and found Adam LaRoche's quote about how he doesn't understand why people would care (because if you paid to see the game, you want it to last as long as possible, apparently) a good illustration of how tough it may be to change anything.

Dan Steinberg's reporting on that Redskins survey was great, but his two best posts this week were this piece on Redskins fan Mark Lindamood being buried in his RGIII jersey (have some Kleenex nearby) and this one on Kornheiser, Wilbon, the Washington Kastles tennis team and Mark Ein (because it's really funny, and anything that makes fun of Wilbon is always worth reading.)

And I was glad to see this lengthy article on Capitals prospect Riley Barber because we get too little coverage of Caps' prospects of any sort (aside from during training camp, when one might make the team). Would have liked to have seen a little more information on his specific unique skills as a player and how soon exactly the Caps expect him to contend for an NHL spot, but those are relatively minor squibbles.

(And outside of the sports page, this story on the "Governor" of D.C., Jeff Thompson, was superb reporting on the rise and downfall of a key player in the city that hardly anyone had ever heard of until last year. Among the great details--how on primary night, 2010, Thompson went to Adrian Fenty's party, then, when he realized Fenty was going to lose, left and went to Vince Gray's party--who he was secretly supporting financially even as he was publicly backing the incumbent.)

And speaking of the Caps, one of the most important players on the Caps signed a new contract as a free agent this week, and the print edition of the Post sports section tried its best to hide it. The signing of Karl Alzner to a four-year deal got four sentences in the Digest section at the bottom of page 2. Really, guys? When Martell Webster signed a new contract with the Wizards a week earlier, that got a full article and front page treatment in the Post--and I can't imagine Martell Webster is any more important to the Wizards than Alzner is to the Caps. And I'd understand if there was just too much news that they couldn't fit an actual full article into the section, but that just wasn't the case--the article on the front page about Bradley Beal and Otto Porter had not one, not two, but three photos accompanying it--two of them very large.

Finally, why exactly was there a front-page article on Sunday on Andy Roddick becoming a television commentator on the new Fox Sports One channel? I think the fact that the new Fox channel is going to apparently try to challenge ESPN more directly than anyone else has so far is an interesting story, but why the Andy Roddick angle? Was it just to anger me more about the fact that the Post sent a reporter all the way to London to cover Wimbledon, but couldn't send anyone to Boston or Chicago to cover the Stanley Cup Finals?


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