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John Kiesewetter on the world of local and national TV

Senior Entertainment Reporter John Kiesewetter has been covering TV and media issues for 20 years. After joining the Cincinnati Enquirer in 1975 as a summer intern, he worked as a county government and suburban reporter; assistant city editor and suburban editor; and features editor supervising the Life section. He has a B.S. in journalism from Ohio University.

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Thursday, May 24, 2007

Love Them Reds!

Is it just me, or have the Clear Channel sports talkers on WLW-AM and WCKY-AM (HOMER 1530) seem to be reeking of being overly positive this week while the Reds have become the worst team in the NL?

The last person I remember ripping the Reds on the air -- not counting Marty Brennaman's criticism during the games -- was Richard Skinner on HOMER Monday morning, when he talked about the eventual firing of Mgr. Jerry Narron. He was fired after the show.

Since then I've heard Paul Daugherty and Tim Lewis talk about the attraction of bobblehead nights... what positives fans have found in the Reds this season... upcoming promotions that might make you want to buy a ticket (Doc read a list last night after the game)... or Lewis talking this morning about how it's still fun to take your young sons to a game to enjoy the experience.

Hello? I love the Reds, but the team stinks, and nothing much has been done to fix it...

Could Clear Channel execs be urging their personalities to go soft on the Reds (as they did with Marge Schott in the '90s)? Remember that the Reds radio contract expires at the end of the season, and St. Louis and other team have moved their games off the blowtorch 50,000 watt stick to smaller stations...

Or are CC sports hosts just bored and tired talking day after day about how to fix a bad team?


at 5/24/2007 10:13 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

What's new about that. I remember both Cunningham and McConnell promoting the stadi sales tax back in 95-96.

I just wonder how many people actually are listening to a Reds game.

I remember a Simpsons episode where Homer went to a ball game and wasn't drunk and said "I never knew how boring this game really is"

Also...... Remember how the CC mercilessly ripped the Bengals when Mikey Boy pulled the broadcast off WLW and went to WBOB. They said at the time that Bengals broadcasts were money losers..... Now it's the greatest thing since sliced (buttered) bread

at 5/24/2007 10:43 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'll cut Paul some slack between the show and his column---he must be tired of talking about the Reds. The new guys haven't been on long enough to be bored talking negatively about the Reds. The thought must be that Skinny was fired for being negative, so naturally new employees will try to do the opposite of Richard. Of course, we just might be seeing what influence the current Reds owner has in this town.

at 5/24/2007 10:58 AM Anonymous PokerDude said...

Me and the boys at the Establishment were talking about this last night. These sportstalk guys are definitely in the tank for the Reds and are going soft.

They belong on Panzy Island.

at 5/24/2007 11:04 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, we already know UC and the Bengals do that, Kiese. I would not be surprised if the Reds also mandate that from ClearChannel. It's sad, it truly is.

at 5/24/2007 11:07 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

All the positive talk about a team that is 6-16 in May, just lost a series to the Nationals, and are now tied for the worst record in baseball shows me that either the hosts are having dictated to them what to say or they are clueless. Either way, it means I won’t waste my time listening to them.

at 5/24/2007 11:10 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

To answer John's question, it is probably a little of both. I definitely think there is a strong chance that the Reds broadcasts could be elsewhere for the first time in a long time. The head honcho's at CC know this and while they probably have not told the hosts specifically to back off, it has probably been hinted that there could be ramifications if they don't; like losing the broadcasts.

On the other hand, if I were a host, I would be sick to my eyeball sockets of talking about the same crap over and over. In fact, I don't even bother to listen, because I am sick of hearing it. That to me, should speak volumes to the Reds top honcho's that something needs to change and soon.

at 5/24/2007 11:25 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAH, what a breath of fresh air it would be if they moved the games to another station away from Clear Channel. The reason they are being told to be a little more positive is ole Darryl (thats not my real name) Parks is worried about his ratings. When the Reds go good their ratings go good. As for Marty, he has been somewhat negative , but the product warrants his remarks. But really, Brennaman has really become bigger than the game. Remembewr that Marty has a ego that is huge and NOBODY in this town dares to take him on. Face it Thom is way better than Dad. Always has been and still is and always will be!! Clear Channel - cut the crap and give us good radio with something other than local folks as hosts!!

at 5/24/2007 11:33 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Reds ownership probably has approached Clear Channel regarding the bashing. Why would it stop all of a sudden. When Clear Channel's biggest revenue source says jump, they say how high. Remember the last business day special when Richard Skinner went and he was approached by a front office type and said that his remarks were killing him. I think it all adds up. Then boom, a memo from Darryl Parks says, he cool it!!

at 5/24/2007 11:55 AM Blogger Brad said...

I absolutely belive the Reds put the local Clear Channel stations on notice, and they buckled. Firing Skinner was just part of it. Paul Daugherty has become a yes man to the Reds. Tim Lewis is the same, when you can stomach listening to him.

at 5/24/2007 12:06 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

For all the criticism some give the Sports Talk hosts about not talking enough does make you wonder. If I were given a "mandate" to stop saying negative things about the Reds, would I: a.)Kiss up and say nice things about a terrible team, or b.)Discuss other topics---ANY other topics. I'd have to go with b. Richard Skinner doesn't seem the type that would willingly continue to do the show if he had to kiss butt anyway. Same with Tom Gamble.

at 5/24/2007 12:19 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank Goodness Marty has the clout to say what's on his mind. Can you imagine Reds on Radio if the broadcasters had to kiss up as well? "Adam Dunn's average has gone up to .238 with runners in scoring position. Way to go Adam!" "And the Reds are only down 12-3 in the 9th! Lohse managed to last a sterling 4 and a 1/3 innings, giving up only 5 earned runs. The 3 unearned runs came on an Encarnacion throwing error, but he'll do better. And this time, the bullpen gave up the 4 runs in the 6th, not the 8th! Yessir!"

at 5/24/2007 12:38 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Could it be the reds weren't real happy with those anti-hispanic billboards, combined with contract talks as to whether to stay with 700 or jump to a different station??? I would guess the reds have less to do with it than management trying to salvage the reds contract.

at 5/24/2007 1:15 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

No way to I buy that Paul Daugherty would sell out and speak nothing but what is on his mind. His reputation precedes him and he would not want to jeopardize that. That being said, just because you are not negative, also does not make you as being positive. Maybe, Doc is not being negative enough for some dolts, but that does not mean he is spinning the '07 Reds into the '27 Yanks, much less the '06 Reds.

Say what you will about censoring the hosts, Skinny was fired for bottom line reasons, nothing more, nothing less. Read into it all you want, if Furman was not fired last year, Skinny would have been out back then and Gamble would have been doing the morning show by himself. The Furman flack probably saved his job 6 months longer than it should have. But sheer numbers and Gamble doing evenings for the short time, kept Skinny around. When the opportunity came to finally cut more costs, bye-bye Skinny!

at 5/24/2007 2:43 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kiese, notice the most popular stories are on the local radio, compared to the TV. Keep up the radio topics!

at 5/24/2007 2:46 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Its CCs Company and station and they get to dictate like any boss can. The boys however can blog away on their own webstite or such but really are overpaid blowhards on the radio employees.

at 5/24/2007 3:25 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wrong, the two new local guys on Homer were just ripping the Reds and their management this afternoon. Hate to rain on your conspiracy parade.

at 5/24/2007 3:31 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

How about this for a groundbreaking scenario. The reds leave CC and go to a new station. The new station does not hire Marty Brennaman. He is out on his ear. That would be monumantal. the city would go nut which would be a boost to tha station (especially a talker like 96.5) the poofy hair boy would be no more

at 5/24/2007 3:48 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

If the Reds or Bengals tell their radio partner to jump, the radio partner says "how high". The money they spend with these stations warrant them being able to do that. Think about it in a logical way. If I spend a ton of money to have my games on your station, why would I want someone hammering them day after day after day. I also like the Brennaman deal of him leaving. I think Martin has gotten a little large for his britches. But his ego is soooooo large nobody in this town has the stones to take him on so they put up with him. Lets move the games to 96.5 and let it become the powerhouse it will one day become.

at 5/24/2007 4:13 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Anon 3:31PM

Marty is an employee of the Reds, not Clear Channel.

at 5/24/2007 4:17 PM Blogger JerBear said...

I don't know if anyone else has ever mentioned it, but I'd love to hear Marty do the Bengals games.

I'm fine with Brad Johannsen, but Marty and Dave Lapham would be classic.

at 5/24/2007 4:35 PM Blogger Jackal said...

The Reds hire the announcers, not the station.

and btw, I'd listen to Marty talk about anything. I even listen to the rather pointless Brennaman and Jones on Baseball, just because I enjoy listening to Marty's thoughts.

at 5/24/2007 4:52 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Memo to Anon 3:48;

You have it half right because in the big leagues, it is the station that bids to air the game and the team that gets to take their money. The team is not spending the money, it is the stations, which you would think would give them the right to say whatever. But in the Reds case and this one-horse media town, the station does bend over to keep the team happy, because the station needs the team, more than the team needs the station.

In college, it is reverse, whereas UC and Xavier pay CC to be on air, the Reds and Bengals get to say the immortal words of Jerry McGuire to CC or other media outlets, "Show me the money".

at 5/24/2007 6:24 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Marty does not work for CC. How many different ways can you say this team is bad? More so for the sports talk station or hosts in this town.

96.5 a powerhouse? I needed to laugh!!! HA HA HA! Hey Furball, get back to preparing your show and stop posting so much on here. Or getting your producer to do it.

at 5/25/2007 8:24 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Does anyone here listen to Lance on 1530? Last time I checked, HOMER was CC and Lance rips on the Reds daily.

There is no Reds conspiracy.

Gods... it's McCarthyism anew!

at 5/27/2007 8:09 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

"96.5 the powerhouse it will be become" have got to be kidding me. The Reds will either buy WLW due to the power of the signal, the station reaches half the country during Reds games......or let WLW continue to do what they are doing. There is no way the Reds will ever go to an FM signal, esspecially one that does not even reach to Lexington and Columbus.

96.5 employees should not post on this thread including Furball.....

at 5/28/2007 8:36 AM Blogger Paul Daugherty said...

Uh, John, the reason I listed the promotions on the air after yet another loss was to make fun of the product. It's called "sarcasm.'' You might have heard of it. Regardless, nobody tells me what to say on the radio. I hope you post this, for the sake of accuracy. I know how you like to be accurate.

at 5/28/2007 9:27 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am glad I am not the only one that noticed a lot of 96.5 employees on here. If they spent less time on here maybe they could finally decide if they want to be a all sports station or a talk station.

Furball...go back to your blog that nobody reads.

at 5/30/2007 11:46 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Doc wants Kiese to post his comments, but won't post all the comments that he gets on his blog.

at 5/31/2007 3:38 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Keep doing what you're doing, Kiese.

And the Reds COULD go to 96.5 because the game is Syndicated out over the Reds Radio Network, so they don't necessarily need 700 WLW.

But I'm sure they stay with WLW.

at 5/31/2007 6:15 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

First we have Rosie and Elizabeth.........

Now we have Doc and Kiese....

Typical sportswriter / journalist / talkshow host.......

Can't take any criticism, but sure can dish it out.

at 6/04/2007 8:28 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Put the Reds on WDJO. You could have W. Emerson Rhoads play Elvis tunes between innings, and read news clippings about the Reds of the 70's. Why not, everyone else in this town lives in the past.

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