Huddle Up with Gus
Huddle Up with Gus

Episode · 2 years ago

Ken Davidoff

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

New York Post baseball writer Ken Davidoff joins Gus and Dave in the huddle! Davidoff talks about how he got into sports and some of his favorite baseball memories. Furthermore, listen to his opinions on controversial MLB issues such as a lack of a salary cap and if they should ban the DH or expand it. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Welcome everyone to huddle up with Gus, where we talked to our guests about how sports shape their life. I'm your host, Gusts Farat, fifteen year NFL quarterback, and I'm joined by my longtime friend and Co host, Dave Hagar. You can now find us under the big top with the sports circus and ring master sow. Look for us on amp TV, a a MP tvcom everyone to another addition, to huddle up with Gus. I'm your host, Gusts Farad. I'm usually joined by my longtime friend of coast Dave Hagar, but as you can see, Dave is not here. We are all having a little bit of trouble with skype, but maybe Dave will chime in later. But we are brought to you by RADIOCOM and RADIOCOM sports. You can find us on the new RADIOCOM APP and also we are under the big top at the sports circus with sow, the ring master. You can find us there and on amp TV on hotel television. So thanks for joining us today. We got a great guests Ken David Off. He's a writer for the New York Post. Writes about the Yankees and Major League Baseball and I'm really excited to find out what he thinks of my favorite team, the Pittsburgh Pirates, and also, you know, what is the future of MLB after this? I don't think anyone knows, but it's going to be great to hear his opinion. So can thanks for joining us today. How are you doing in this whole situation? Ok, I'm doing as well as possible. Guests. Thank you. Thankfully, my immediate family is healthy. Do know a fair amount of people have been afflicted by this coronavirus and it's pretty awful. But I'm happy to join you. And then I was a fan of yours going way back. I think we're around the same age. I think we are right around the twenty nine. We're both twenty. Yes, yes, your twenty nine looks way better than my twenty nine. So, speaking about going way back, tell us about where you grew up and how you fell in love with the sports in general. Yeah, I grew up in Edison, New Jersey. Definitely a huge sports fan growing up. I would in the S, the Yankees, NFL. Wise, where I grew up in the late s early s, the jets and giants both stunk. So we all chose you the cowboys are the steelers. I chose the cowboys. And Yeah, those were my loves as a kid. And then what happened as I got older? I began to love writing and and I became very entry by journalism. Now, if you, you know, asked me what what I love about my job, it's not the sports as the journalism. Right. Right. So, when you were growing up as a kid in Edison, did you have a big neighborhood? Go outside, I mean road bikes, everybody played. What were your what were some of the sports you played as a child? Yeah, so we definitely played baseball on our backyard, using probably tennis balls and maybe racquet balls when all yeah, we played tackle football, as was the style at the time. Right. I'm sure I got a concussion or so. Yeah, didn't know it. We didn't call them concussions back then. Just felt busy for a little bit. Yeah, and I'm we had had a basketball group on my driveway that we would play, you know, halfcourt basketball. So and I was in a bowling league, I played in a soccer league. So definitely love playing sports when I was a kid. You know, one of the things about I think the kids missed today is is when we played. I did all the same things right. We grew up a small town's out in Fort City, Pennsylvania. wrote our bikes. We just went around and got everybody. Nobody called. We just went and knocked on doors and we learned how to swing, how to throw, how to shoot, do all those things on our own. You know, we'd have some crazy coach. Your Dad was there, but half time your dad didn't know anything. And you know, we all kind of learned how to manage all those scenarios, how to manage the team, how to pick players and and and work through like crazy situations. And...

I think that when I look at a lot of players today, they've never really done that. You know, they didn't grow up in that era we did, and so it's just always there's always somebody there. I mean you know how it was. If there was a skirmish that happened, you just let it happen. Then you move on and just kept playing. Yeah, no, there's no doubt things have changed dramatically. I have a one child, a six year old son. He played travel baseball, he does he had was going to play junior varsity tennis, most likely before his school got shut down, all right. But yeah, times have changed and in this regard, yeah, I'm not sure how much, other for the better. In general, I am a progressive guy. I'm not one to lament the old days, but I do agree with you on this one. Well, no, I am too. I'm very progressive inte and thinking about all that, but I just go back to the fun I had. You right when you're with your buddies all day and you're going to play and you know the nine o'clock whistle's going to blow and you better be home or else your death going to be waiting for you. You know, things like that. I just think that, you know, I'm not saying I want to go back to those days. I'm just saying that I think our kids miss some of that like that kind of what we had, that freedom, that fun. Yeah, I agree with actually, I'm primary home is in Manhattan, so it's a little different dynamic, you know, did my son doesn't go outside and play the same way that you and I did at at that age. But yeah, I I I see where you come with from. Yeah, you know, I just talk to Billy Garn last week and billy was talking about growing up in Mass Chusetts, he goes. Yeah, we had a manhole cover that was home plate and we had a sewer on the right and a sewer on the left. It was first and third and then we just put something down for second base and we we play all day and, like you said, it was any too, any kind of thing you could hit. My Dad used to bring big piece of felt home from PPG, the factory, and we would play fellow. Oh it's time. So, you know, it was just everything. I just loved sports and just growing up, you know. And so did you have a favorite player, like when you stepped into the batter's box, who were you? That's a great question. So I remember when out for a little we got to where number fourteen in honor of Loopinella, right. And then, as I got a little older, Don Maddenley and Dave winfield became my my go two guys. I was Al right ahead or site. I would only emulate maddenly if I was joking around and switch to the left side. You know, those were my guys. Oh, yeah, I can imagine that. Mine was I just because I loved his free hitting routine. Was Willie Stargel. You know, being a pired fan I mean how could you not with the big windmill and back in with the bat. Yeah, Oh man, he he was your Dave Parker. I mean those are my guys. I mean obviously. Yeah, like you said, in the s Pittsburgh was happening with sports. Yeah, those were Glorious Times. I remember what I think the one year will he started on Terry Bradshaw or sports, Old Straits Co men of the year, right. Yeah, because at the steelers and the pirates want it all in the same year. That that lost have been pretty phenomenal. Yeah, I would love to see, like if if Willie could throw a football like terrier, if Terry could hit a baseball like Willie. I don't know how either one. But so you go on, you go through, you know all these things. Did you play Litt League Baseball? And Yeah, yeah, so, I mean those times for me were fun. I mean I love those times and you know, those were kind of things that you just keep moving on. What high school did you end up going to? I went to JP Stephens high school and that is a New Jersey Nice. And so did you continue sports going in through high school? I was not as talented and probably not as hard working as intelligent as you guys. I my career stopped at age fifteen when I aged out of little league. I was...

...not good enough to play high school sports. So I guess that's why I write. Right, but right. Well, the great thing is you can keep writing. I am done playing sports. So My pyramid went real high, real fast, and and sharply down. So Yours, yours is still rising, so, which is great. So you go into high school. So you were. Were you writing for the school paper? How are you doing that? I wrote. Yeah, I wrote sports for the school paper. And Gosh, what else did I do? Yeah, my primary activity, after school activity, to the school newspaper. We came out once every two months or so, you know, but I used to. I was a sports editor my senior year and I yeah, I knew at a pretty young age Thatt, this is what I wanted to do. So did you? Did your high school have some big sports accomplishments when we were there, you know, winning states or you know, all that stuff. What was your favorite article that you wrote on Your High School? Ow? Well, your first question. We had an excellent football team my freshman year when I was actually in the marching band. So I went to all the games whole men wrote as part of that. We finished number two in the state as in the Pole of the Star Ledger, which was the number one newspaper New Jersey, and we had up kicker, punter who wind up playing for pit so we we had some talent on that team. As for my favorite article, a buddy of mine every I think my last two or three years, we write what we called sports rap. It was kind of a tradition. You know, it's really just a bunch of questions about sports and it could just, you know, all kinds of stuff. You know, why don't the arrangers fire their general manager? You know, it's right, just all over the map and just just quick, quick, quick, quick hits. And that was always my favorite thing to write. Oh yeah, that would be you know, mine would be like is wwe real put on? I think Dave's trying to call us. Let's see if we can merge your man real quick. Let's see if this will happen. There he is, baby on. Guys, I'm so sorry. This is a like to blame it on the quarant team, but I think it was just user error. So so can we're all the same age. Dave is a little bit older than you and I dad fake nice to me you too, but if there's a more technically challenged and all of us, it might be Dave. That's he's learning, though he's learning this rough start. So, Dave, we've been through KN's. We've been through Ken's kind of childhood into high school, you know, sports as editor, when he was a senior writer, and now we're getting to figure out his college. We're going on to his college day. So took Ken. Where did you go to end up going to college, and why did you choose it? I attended the University of Michigan, guss and Dave. I was pretty simple. Really the best school I got into, best reputation and I for sure love the idea of going to a big school that had big time sports and I wanted to cover those sports for the for the school newspaper. Wow, is that a big I mean for Medison, New Jersey to Michigan. I mean that that back in the day. That's kind of still far, good, good distance away from home. Yeah, and I was, you know, I kind of thought like and I had a wonderful upbringing. I love my family. I'm still very close with my family, but at age eighteen, I was ready to spread my wings and go further from home, just just kind of plant my flag somewhere else and and you know, a fresh start, if you will, and that's I never hesitated in that regard of going out there and I'd still the best four years of my life. Now, pardon me, guys, since I was late joining gust. Did you ask Kenn if he played whiffle ball...

...as a kid? I did not, because what that's that's one of our root questions. Can and especially like people are age, that was kind of a that was a root sport. Did you play in Edison, New Jersey, woffleball? Yeah, I definitely played my Charer Wolf of Ball Day, but I got a gust and I were discussing we ought we played a lot with like wooden bats and either a tennis ball or a racquetball. My Dad actually was as a big racquetball player. My Dad actually started the trend of racquetball birthday parties for me and my friends. So we often use a racquetball, which obviously you could make it fly pretty far, which she kind of turns into a homer and Derby at that, of course. Yeah, the best, right. You know you're out there to hit looping doubles down the line. You're putting it over the neighbor's house. Exactly. Yeah, I mean that that. I always love playing with the tennis ball, just just just because you could smash and be a lot of fun and you weren't going to break any windows. That's true, very true. Yeah. So, so you're at Michigan. So you've always you wanted to be a journalist, probably from the time you were you know, you talked about from the time you were little. Did you go right in, like did you took some prerequisites and then just said okay, I'm going right I'm did you dive in right away to journalism school, or how did that all work for you? Yeah, it's funny. My freshman year I was just for whatever reason, I couldn't get my act together and I went the remember I went to the school newspaper probably two or three times, but just kind of hung out. Didn't really stick. And then and a soft at the start of Sophomore Year said okay, enough for any like this is what you want to do. Please get your eye together, and I did and I started going and you know, you start low on the you know on the hierarchy and I remembered my first beat for the Michigan Student Newspaper was intramural sports. So I covered like intramural sports and I interviewed guys and I worked my way up and I worked my whips of my senior year I covered the men's basketball team, which was the Fab Five, the year where Chris whoeber called the time out when we had no timeouts against North Carolina. So I covered that season. I was I was at that game and not only was that a trip to cover a lot of fun, but professionally it was just tremendous preparation and really I think gave me a leg up when I started applying for jobs, you know, because they saw my experience I'd already accumulated. I'm Ken, who's your favorite Fab five member? And I would have said this even a year ago, Joan Howard Juan was the nicest of the five in my opinion, just a real sweet guy and a terrific player. And the one I'd probably knew the best of the five at that point and and love would behold now is our basketball coach and doing a great job. How know, how were those guys like is this as a student reporter? Did they give you the time you're looking for versus someone from USA Today, or like, how did did it? Was it definitely a difference and their attention towards you. Well, look, if someone parachuted in from say, USA Today, they understood what that man as did the media relations staff. Right, and they're going to direct the player. Okay, this is important, but I always felt like they gave the the student newspaper, the respect, a good level of respect, and they I nice relationships with all all five of the fat five or right, while the rest of the team, as well as Steve Fisher, the coach. I you know, but again we're students, were generally idiots, but they nevertheless treated US pretty nicely. Steve Fisher always sound seemed like a really friendly guy to me from the outside. Yeah, Steve Fisher, I mean his whole story is fascinating. I yeah, I don't know if you guys know. You know he became the head coach right before the one thousand nine hundred and eighty nine big dance march madness because his boss, Bill...

Freeder, got fired because he had accepted a job after the season without Arizona state so bombeckler, who was at that point our athletic director, fired freed or like two days before the tournament and made fish of the head coach. And then we want it all. We won the championships. So it was an insane beginning for Fisher who was, you know, just generally an introspective, reserved guy. So when he got the Fab Five, I think that was a challenge for him to deal with that increased spotlight and he I always thought he conducted himself in a very kind of decent manner, but you could see he didn't really enjoy that kind of platform and if you follow the rest of his career, he want up getting fired from Michigan because for some indiscretions, and he had a great run at San Diego State, you know, a lower profile school, and helped he has talked about it like that. He considers that his crowning moment is his success with San Diego State. Yeah, I I almost went to Michigan Myself. I was getting recruited heavily by them. Cam Cameron was the quarterback coach and I thought I was going there for sure and they got another quarterback, I can't remember, and it would have been eighty nine, who the quarterback was they would have taken. But you know, he said in later he became my quarterback coach at the Redskins when a draft right and I said, what happened? Man, I wanted I was already go to Michigan, you know, Bloom Gold and ready to go and and he said, well, we got you know, there are three of you we are going after and the one kid committed and that's who we took and we kind of dropped the other two. And I'm like, so I end up going to university of Tulsa's a little bit different from from like twenty fivezero students to two thousive hundred. I will say, guys, whoever that was didn't never really landed, because Elvis grewback was the quarterback for the next four years for our you know, for from eighty nine to ninety two. Yeah, and he so I don't. I yeah, I get remember who that was. Yeah, I'm not sure who it was, but it wasn't me. That's all I know. But can can? He came off the bench for the Fab Five. I'm trying to remember. Like how deep were they? Well, the number one name who should register for you. Was Rob Polinka, now the general manager of the Lakers. He was at successful aver for many years, Kobe Bryant's agent, and then he transition to general manager of the Lakers. So Yeah, rob was like a longdistance three point shooter guy. He was solid. There was a Guy James Voskill, like a powerfulward type to get in there and get some rebounds, and we had a center, Eric Riley, who spent a little time in the NBA. He was he was good guy to give give Juana blow. And then the other bench guy was Michael Tally. Really talented guy out a high school, didn't really pin out as he hoped and he might be most famous now for being the one guy who clapped when weever call the time out. Everyone else knew that that we didn't have a time out sweat, but tally right soon. If you watch a thirty you'll they break that down pretty pretty thoroughly. The official expressions are class a classic. Not Being a Michigan Jam, but I mean when the timeouts called, if you just when they panned the bench, it's like, Um my God, so you so can. You're into big ten. Michigan has tons of sports. Probably when we were in school. I don't know how many women's sports, right, was title nine in yet? Oh sure, yeah, so it would have been. So you were covering. So did the school tell you like, Hey, we waited to cover men's and women's? Did you cover men's? What was your primary who you were covering? Well, the paper we covered all. You know, I got I started intramurals and so we covered everything, including a tramurals. So yeah, I covered women's basketball. I covered softball, which has been very, very successful a long time now. We still have...

...the same coach now that we did back then, Carol Hutchins. She's one of the most accomplished softball coaches and college softball history. So yeah, we dontlook we in terms of traveling with the team, covering road games, it was football, men's hoops and ice hockey, men's ice hockey, occasionally women's whoops if they were good enough. But yeah, in terms of covering home games, we made it a point, I think they still do now, to cover everything. Yeah, because big ten, I mean you're playing every sport, wrestling on down to you know, you guys just have unlimited fund so you can play every sport. And then I had to be kind of fun. So when you were covering Wolverine Baseball, what was that like for you, because it didn't seem like compared to, you know, the fat five and Wolverine Football. What was baseball like covering for you and did you just have a love for it that you could write about in a certain way? Was that like Jim Abbott era or no, might wrong. Okay, so was you funny? The Funny Story About Michigan Baseball. My freshman year I arrive on camp as the fall of one thousand nine hundred and eighty nine, just like Ugus, right, fall of Eightia and nine. Start Your colleague and probably, I would say, October of that year. It comes out big scandal. Baseball players have been getting paid because we had this great run, as you mentioned, Dave, Jim Abbott, Barry Larkin, Chris Sabo, how, Marris Steve, how, all these very talented players, and turns out there many of them were getting paid. So that that that era success ended and the coach got fired. We hired a guy, Bill Freehand, very good catcher for the Tigers way back when in the s right, and it's he took over. So I I never actually covered the baseball team during my time there, but we were pretty bad just because we had been put in the penalty box. Oh yeah, about that. Very often that you know. It's illegal payments to baseball teams. You know, that's unusual. They players would during on Football Saturdays, the players would sell programs to the game stand on the street. Everyone walks to the football stadium there, the big house, and they would sell the programs and pocket the money that was there, you know. So that's why I got in trouble. Wow, hey, we want you to come to Michigan and sell programs and you get to keep all the money. How's that sound? A hundred thousand customers possibility, you know. Yeah, so if you're if you're good at selling, you might make a lot of money. That's pretty funny. Start Your Day sunny side up at the Weston Bonaventure Hotel and suites and enjoy breakfast for two on us. No matter how you plan to spend your trip to Los Angeles, start every day with a hearty meal to kick start your morning. Enjoy breakfast for two on US each day. You stay for reservations, be sure that Promo Code S for B appears in the Promo codebox when making your online reservation at Marriottcom backslash LAX BW or call one eight hundred two to eight one thousand two hundred and ninety and asked for a promotional code S for B. So then you're at Michigan. So did you get, ever get to be the for for your student paper in Michigan? We ever the the editor, the top guy. I was one of them. I'm that wasn't the number one. That was one of the one of the top people they're so yeah, but again it was was really a lot of fun, very formative for me and, like I said, I don't want to apply for my first real jobs. I saw right here's the article I wrote the night the Chris Webber called the time out. I wrote on the same professional circumstances and deadlines as as any other professional writer and you know, thankfully, someone...

...bought into that and hired me. Right. So, you know, for me, going from playing football in college and then going on and getting into the draft and going to the combine and those things, you know, I kind of knew that world. I didn't know the other world is like. Once college is over, it's over. I kind of stayed in my same field. I imagine a little bit that's what it was like for you, where you had to put out your resume, put out your work and and how many different papers and people did you apply to? Oh Gosh, it's probably fifty to a hundred really. Yeah, and it was rough time getting that first job. But I found an opportunity of a part time job very close to where I grew up in New Jersey, live with my parents. They were kind enough to put me up because I sure as heck was going to making enough money to pay my own rent. So I got some plenty of breaks along the way. But yeah, I didn't get my first full time job as a sports writer until a about three years after I graduated college. And where was that? That was at the Bergen record in New Jersey, probably the second or third largest newspaper New Jersey. And they were they weren't legit, you know, they had a really nice staff and I was able to climb the ladder there from covering high school sports to being there Yankees beat writers. That was a nice, fortunate run I had there. Oh well, so you went straight from high school to a Yankees beat writer. Well, not took her off took me about four years to climb that ladder. You know, from high schools, the small college is, the bigger colleges, to what we call General Sigmon, you know, just covering all the sports, and then the Yankees. What was that first day like as the beat writer for the Yankees, walking into their locker room then? Do you remember it? You remember the specific person who spoke to or the scenario? Well, by the time I got the beat job I'd already been covering games for a few years, you know, like as a backup to the beat writer Ian. I remember my first timer. I don't know the first day, that my first year covering baseball. I was twenty four years old, definitely very intimidated to stand in that room with all those guys what they had accomplished, and I remember, I know, her Bret Saber Hagen, the picture. Yeah, Oh, yeah, yeah, two times. I young or win or so he he was a little tricky and so I had to ask him something. So I kind of tiptoed up to him and he looked at me, smile a said what are you working up the nerve to talk to me? And I laugh as pretty much yeah, he, he laughs. is like what he needed. You know, he was so you was in a good mood at that moment. But yeah, no, it was certainly intimate, timidating as a young man and being in that environment. So what was it? What was that year then? Is that like ninety five or no, that I was nine five hundred and ninety five. I was the first year I covered Major League Baseball Games. Were the Yankees like in ninety five? I'm trying to remember the Yankee will the Yankees. Ninety five was their first year back in the playoffs since one thousand nine hundred and eighty one. That ended their drought. I actually covered more mets than Yankees that year, but yeah, yeah, the Yankees were starting out there. That was the year the jeter, Pasada, pettit and river all debut in ninety five. So that was a pretty important year in the team's history. Yeah, really big gear, really big started. Nice time to get that gig right and it was yeah, wow, so you're covering the Yankees. Did you ever interview Mr Steinbrenner? I did. Yeah, you know, that was so that was George's last run of you know, success and from everyone I've spoken to was a little less crazy those years, but he was still very high energy and I think he would occasionally, when he was a good mood, he would joke around with the media people, you know, you like to put a couple of us and headlocks, you know, just a playful matter. And you know when he was in a bad mood,...

...you had to chase him down, you know, and you know it was it was, it was like the keystone cops sometimes just just you always had to be aware of where he was because you never knew when he might say something. And there were plenty of days when I had to call him and he was in his office in Tampa and you just pray for the return call. Some days you could get it, some days you wouldn't, but one of my competitors would and then I would be miserable the next day. Was He an owner that spent a lot of time mingling with players, like kind of like a Jerry Jones or like, you know like that, that type of character. Yeah, yeah, George was absolutely like Jerry Joe and George loved being he was just a very hands on person as a boss and owner. And then he you know, he had a somewhat athletic background and I think he was an assistant coach. I think I produe and he he just really reveled in being accepted by the athletes and it was very imp even though at times he would get into a screaming match with with them and give them pep talks and, you know, trade them, release them, fire them. It was very important for him to be considered one of the guys and that clubhouse. Yes, super competitive, right, wasn't he? All my bad? Yes, very competitive. Yes. So, you know, in baseball I was friends with when I lived in St Louis with Chris Carpenter and been in the locker room at the cardinals a few times and it's kind of see, it's just a whole different vibe than the NFL. I've been in another in hockey locker rooms. You know, there's just so many games and it's just like such a routine that those players have and are. Do you fit right into that routine because of a hundred eighty games and you do. You know what I mean? It's just it's just crazy. How like or how's that routine for you every day? Yeah, Gosh, that's a great question, because I see that. I remember when I was a young reporter just how exhaust that I was by the end of the year. I remember my my first guy as the Yankees beat rider, was one thousand nine hundred and ninety eight, which is one of the best. The Yankees put together one of the best seasons by any team in baseball history. They want a hundred fourteen games. They won the world series and that world series ended they swept the San Diego padres. I was in San Diego and it wasn't. You know, I didn't feel any fan jo I I'm glad I didn't. I shouldn't have not a fan anymore, but I didn't even get any professional juice out of covering this huge story. I was just worn out, broken down, and I remember I said I will, now that I've been through this once, next year I'll be better prepared for I had to handle the grind of the season and yeah, of course it's it's a different grind than the ball players and the way they have to stay in shape physically, but I just learned how to at a how to get myself, how to navigate myself through what is you're right, what is a very long rhynd of the baseball season and whether that's you know. I made sure to hit the gym more often, try to eat a little better, and those younger days for me I could go out at night and pound a few beers. Now, in general, I do not one on on the road. I really just got to go to sleep when I get back to my hotel room and and get up early the next day and hit the gym. But yeah, there's no doubt that just just as an athlete improved, store should improve upon his routine with time. The same goes for a sport words reporter. I think the road ships were pretty interesting too, because there's such a wellknown team with such a following. I know I'll use Pittsburgh as an example, which is like the opposite of the Yankees, I realize, but when in the every four years or whatever, when they when they come to Pittsburgh, it's like the playoffs are here because the Yankees counting, you know, when the by no way of the rivals or like that, it's just like a real buzz. Is that like that on the road? Somewhat like where there's just so many people note all waiting for them and everything else. Yeah, no doubt about a day if I don't necessarily stay in the same hotel as the Yankees or the mets every time I travel with those guys, but I just I...

...know enough from talking to people and I occasionally do share a hotel with them. Yeah, it's a scene. You know, they have two security guards would them at all times on the road to manage that, that buzz, that scene, you know, to clear a path for them as they're getting on the bus to go to the stadium and, you know, to try to keep them out of as much trouble as possible. So as much as you're on the road, your content that you create, is that you saying? Sometimes it's just what happens up during the game or an off field situation. How much of it do you create? And thing, I think this would be a great story. You know I mean, because there's it's a lot, there's a lot of content coming at you. And how do you figure that out? Yeah, there's no you're right, guy. Some days the story is on the field. It's very simple and and you don't want to you know, you don't want to overcomplicate things, but especially in baseball, where there are a hundred sixty two games, you can't treat every game like it's life or death, like you might for a football game. It's right, sixteen, right. So yeah, it is important to find different angles, to write about some off the field stuff, or I here is what they're looking at in the trade market, you know, here's here's what's going on in the clubhouse with this guy. So yeah, you definitely you have to mix it up. You're doing your your audience a disservice if every day you're just writing off the game. Oh my God, what a you know, what a terrible pitching performance by Garrett Cole. You know, what are they going to do with this? You know, if he you know, if he only he was mediocre, you know, and and he had pitched graded last three time. You can't overreact to the daily events at baseball. So it does a very important to bring that perspective and bring something else to the party. Do you do? You then write about all of Major League Baseball. Within that I would sum like not just always about the Yankees. You got to write about everything. Yeah, I mean my job title is baseball columnist and what that entails is writing about all of major league baseball, with an emphasis on the Yankees and metsine I write for the New York Post where largely New York audience. So and that's what our audience primarily wants to see. So I write, let's say, seventy five percent on those two teams, maybe even closer to eighty five percent, and then the rest about the industry. And can't you know when a specific team is interesting enough, the red SOx or the nationals or the Phillies, then I'll write about them. Do you think? You didn't mention the pirates? I didn't mention that. That was not that was an active decision on my part. Yeah, not many people mentioned the pirates anymore, but you know, it's interesting. One question I had for you was if you think back to all the incredible players that have ever played this game and where the money is now. You know, I think obviously some of the guys that are making a lot of the money now they're they're very good players, but I look back at the old days and the people that were really good players. Do you think, if you go back and think about all the amazing players, do you think there's a player in there that, if they were playing today, they would be a billion dollar player? I mean we're half a billion now. Well, look, I've been if we want to go all the way the back baby ruth. But you know, Mike Trout to me is probably, if not already on his way to being one of the best ten players of all time. Might Trout is just ridiculous, phenomenal, and he is. What I think he makes probably about thirty five, thirty six million dollars a year. This current contract, I think is current commitment with the angels, is about five hundred million. So I'm not sure if anyone would quite get to a billion. I would say the babe would exceed trout. But you know, and Willie mays, Hank Aaron, those guys what as well,...

...but not too many would valet, stay and play on your next getaway to Los Angeles, the Weston Bonaventure Hotel and sweets offers effortless access to all the city of angels has to offer, whether you're hoping to catch a concert or sporting event. Our hotels just moments away from all the action and accessible to Hollywood, beaches, museums and theme parks. The package includes a guest room and valet parking. For reservations, use Promo Code PSF in the code box when making your online reservation or call one two hundred and three, six, two, four, one thousand and ask for Promo Code PSF. Yeah, that's probably in there. Who was that? Mickey? Mickey Nwal sure, that's fine. Sure, yeah, yeah, that as you know. I think that's not want to kind of pick your break a little bit about the pirates, but we almost feel like backing off at this point. What do you think, guys? No, I mean I think that, you know, we kind of understand the pirates. You know, there's there's not a lot of dynamics going on. We've traded away all of our good players and we kind of just keep bringing people up through the system. If they get good, they end up going away, like Garrett Cole, like you mentioned, like those of that. Sorry, guys, now I'm just saying you know, we do well with them for a little bit and then they get too high priced and they move on and I think we suffer as fans because of all that. Well, yeah, can like what you know. We're at one of the smallest markets, at least pay roll wise. Actually, Metro Paul in area, that's arguable, but you're in the biggest market. What's your opinion? From someone WHO's an expert in the big markets. On those teams that are crying for revenue sharing and that kind of stuff. Yeah, look, there's baseball is the one sport out of the four major North American leagues that does not have a salary cap and I understand the frustrations of a pirates fan, of a Kansas city royals fan. I think those are very fair complaints and frustrations and I think, you know, they have tried to even the scales with, as you said, revenue sharing the luxury tax. Then those have helped a little bit and I think what we've learned about the revenue sharing electric tax have been in play now for about almost twenty five years and what we've seen is teams like the pirates can succeed, but they have, they might have to go through ebbs and flows. They get windows of opportunity that they can't necessarily keep open for an extent in the period of time. Always saw with the pirates, with this run they had with Neil Huntington as a general manager and Clint hurtle as the manager. They made the playoffs three straight years. I think it was one thousand three hundred and fourteen and fifteen and they weren't able to get even as far as the championship series and they didn't expand their payroll enough. Whether that was they reduced it. They actually reduced it, not during that stretch right after. Well, in fifteen it actually wanted down. They didn't know, did it? Yeah, they maybe drop seven million or something off the fifteen payroll as they're going into sixteen. I mean, it's it's the opposite of what I mean. You know, there's no window. There's the smallest window of opportunity and no margin the air and they you know, they're red they didn't make any move at all. It's just, I think people, you know, obviously very disheartened, but it's getting to the point now it's even with the whole new management and throughout the whole front office. No one cares and that's just a really sad thing. You know, there's no zero excitement. Not Loire fans are it. Yeah, and I totally get that day. That's very fair,...

I think. Well, I think Ben Charrington's a very sharp guy. He had an interesting run as the red SOx general manager. Made some really good moves, also made some really bad moves. Derek Shelton, the new manager. I think there's a terrific choice. I mean a really I'm just your textbook background of managing the Minor Leaves Coaching in the big league's great people skills, very intelligent, very progressive in terms of his willingness to use analytics. And we'll say it, we'll see, if you know, if this group does put a good team together day, I would hope that you would get interested again, you and your fellow fans, and we'll see this time if they can finish the job. You know, the obvious contract with the pirates are the royals who had that little run in two thousand and fourteen and fifteen made the playoffs twice, made the world series both years of one a world series. That flag flies forever. They did increase the pay at all. They made some go for trades. In July. They trade a prospects for Johnny Quato, the picture for Ben Zobrist. You know those kind of trades. Yeah, it's it's there's a risk reward component to that, but man and they get the rewards from that. Well, you know, and we have the fan base here, that's not the problem right, as we've seen in Pittsburgh. If you if you've you play well, the fans are and come out because we have the penguins in the steelers, who are in the same market. But you know, obviously with the salary cap difference, they're able to bring some really good players in and I think that's where, you know, the people get frustrated, where we get a starter and he's gone in two years, he hasn't progressed and and so it's just it's just very hard to be a pire fan right now and but to be a major league baseball fan it's really good, I think a lot of time. That's why I think Roberto Clementi will never go away as being the super idol here in Pittsburgh, you know, just just because there's nobody ever going to take his place. Yeah, yeah, I hope for your guy's fake and I you know, for the sports fake, that the pirates do get back to the world series. And I'll you know, I've been covered every world series since ninety eight and I also covered ninety six. I've been to a lot of different locals for world series. I would love to go to a world series in Pittsburgh because when you when you had that dynamic, like when Kansas City got their world series after so many years away. The town gets so excited and it's so wonderful in the ballpark is just roaring and rocking. So I hope for your Guy's sake and for the city of Pittsburgh's sake that that the pirates do make another world series and I think that would be good for the sport. Well, the thirteen wildcard game. You mentioned Quada before, but when Queen to drop the ball, I mean that. I've been to a fair amount of sports, super bowls, world series. That was the greatest in person moment I've ever wissed. I've never seen fans react the way they reacted to that, to the buildup of that game and then obviously during the game. Was Crazy. But it's just it actually makes it harder, as a really diehard Tan, to see what could be and you know it's it might happen ten years from now. Again, maybe you know the reality is probably not so. Kay, who's the one person that that you never got to interview, that you always wanted to? MMM, really good question. Really look so you mean like I came close for just like an history? Well, no, like not. Since you've been writing, since you've been yeah, following baseball try. Yeah, I've never interviewed trout one on one. I've interreviewed him in groups. I love the chat with him one on one. But you know, Mike is a not one, not disrespect always and he's a an introverted guy, you know, not not. Doesn't take on an ambassador role like like others might, and that's not a Chrystasom I...

...things a great guy, which is not as personality. So yeah, I would love to have like an extended one on one with Mike, because people say only great things about him, so I'll go with him be a good one to interview. It can this, and this might be a really stupid question, but just not being a New Yorker, I was curious as to WHO. Is there a correlation between jets fans, giants fans, Yankee stands a mets fans? Are they all? Is it a cross between all of them, or are there more jets fans that are mets fans? Or is it? Is that something you can answer? Is it just random? It is something I can answer, Dave. Yeah, there's a it's not a hundred percent but there's clearly geographic historical alignments between the Yankees and giants and the jets and the mets, because you know the Yankees, their fans tend to be Your Jersey Bronx Westchester, and the same go for the giants. Your giants actually played in Connecticut for some time now. They play in Jersey, and the jets and the mets for many years share Chase Stadium, which they've been so queen's long. When that fan base and so yeah, you off. You know, at the end it's not one hundred percent, but most often you will see someone who is a jets and mets fan and someone who's a Yankees and giants fan, Jetson a mets fan. You, I mean you're drowning your sorrows an awful lot. Well, how about Tebow? If tebow would become the first person ever to play for the jets and the mets, if you ever makes it, makes it up. Yeah, I know, he might have to quit lift in a little bit. I think. I think he's looking a little too punky. You got to be a little flexible, right. I don't know any in it. Can tebow hit a curveball? Yeah, now, I stood in so Chris Carpet. It was hurt and he was rehabbing and I got this. I mean he's injured and he's coming back and I got to stand in home play trying to hit his just fastball and I'm like man, I don't how do you do this? And then then then throws. He guys all right, I'm gonna throw a little curveball, guess, and I'm like don't, don't hit, don't kill me, I got don't want to die right now, you know, and it just comes in, it breaks and it's just an amazing and he's Rehab and he's getting back to like eighty five miles an hour, you know, but he's six six on the mound and he's just as big guy. I can't imagine when something's coming at you had a hundred miles an hour, you know, or you know Nolan Ryan with the leg kick and everything. It was just incredible. It is phenomenal how those guys can can really pick that pitch out so fast and understand what it is. And then, you know, with all the Houston stuff that happened this year and also the clicker. Yeah, like that's amazing that that nobody picked that up. I mean I'm sure you followed that a ton but you know, if you if you're getting two bangs and you know it's a curveball, it's got to help hitters a lot, no doubt about it. Do you feel like they should have had more repercussions, like more come down players and the coaches and ownership? Carmically yes, but legally, know, not the players. I do think. I do think the commissioner did a good job with that because he the players just by the lender of the law, they were never going to get suspended because the you know, I don't know how closely guys followed the chain of event. So it's mid September of two thousand and seventeen. The Commissioner, Rob Man for issues this memo to general managers and managers saying okay, from now on, no more of this crap with the you know, the sign stealing using technology and if you use it there's going to be penalties for the team. You didn't say the players, if for the team, including a loss of draft picks. So we kind of laid down the guidelines right there.

So when the Astros violated those guidelines, he followed his own memo, his own mandate. Yeah, it took away draft picks in addition to the other suspensions for the leaders, for the manager and general manager who who ignored those warnings. And he was never going to get to the place where he got without granting the players immunity to tell the truth about what happened. So I understand all the frustration that the players weren't discipline more heavily, but from a legal standpoint I understand and I actually agree with it. Awesome pot the pirates actually swept the astras in Houston that I think they were the only team to sweep him in Eustons that right series. Yeah, and I can't remember how often they change the signals, but you know there were rumblings about what was going on. It might have been more than once an ending they change the signals and it wow, but I might have been coincidence. But it came out all right. You know, I was like the bright splot for the pirates last year. We'll talk about that like five years from now. Remember that. So so can one of the last things we do is we have what we call the no huddle and you know we fire a bunch of questions at you. We have a lot of fun with it. So I'll do a little intro bringing in and and Dave only starts us off. So we want to thank everybody for joining us on huddle up with gusts. I'm here with Dave, my cohost, and you know we are on RADIOCOM. You can find us on the new RADIOCOM APP or also anywhere you listen to your favorite podcast. And today we are also brought to you by the sports circus and under the big top of sal the ring master. We've had a great interview with Ken. We're going to go into our no huddle segment now. So Day fire away. I can. We're all at the same age and for me like the heyday of baseball. I loved early S to like real early s. If there's a element of that era baseball that you could bring back, what would it be? The uniforms. Love those uniforms and thankfully they still teams honor their own histories of a throwback days and all that. But yeah, those uniforms was spectacular. So many good uniforms. I mean I think even NFL wives to I think that the s uniforms were better than today's uniforms. Can Rats just a yes or no answer? Should Pete Rose be in the hall of fame. Yes, I love it. I agree. Also, I agree. Um, I can. What's your biggest as a fan? What was your biggest sports heartbreak? That's a really good question. Would have to be Michigan related. I just a side decide which one. You know, it might be the Webberd time out, probably. Yeah, as the easiest answer, that would be all right. Can't what's your biggest pet peeve? Oh, I have so many. Oh my God, lest them go far away. Let's see. Having to repeat things you know and to someone. When I say something to someone and they don't absorb it or don't listen and I have to repeat it, it's right. It's up there. Right. Fifty percent of the players. Yes, Gosh, I'm sure peep long talkers. Can't stand long talkers can't stand low talkers, because I met. I'm getting old, like you guys, a am hard of hearing. Right. Let's see. What my what else is my pet peeve? Gosh, I could go on forever. Social Media, you know. I guess. I guess more than a pet peeve, you know, just just people who listen to who fall someone, no matter what you know, even if they disagree with the person, I guess, ideologs or a pay mine. I guess that the way of putting it. But yeah,...

...those those are a few that they stand out of the top of my head. I cannot the Mount Rushmore question for you with a little twist. Mount Rushmore of Yankees without a ring, without a ring. Wow, wright, that all right. Well, obviously, Don Maddingly, that's an easy one. Wow, without a ring. That's I'm just going through the eras. Yeah, Donnie was the best player that you know. Eighty one to seven, eight, eight, hundred and ninety six stretch. Wow, that is just an outstanding question. I'm tried. I think Donny is the only guy with his number retired who doesn't have a ring. You are just killing me here with that question. That is a really good question. We'll just kind of think about it come back to it. Well, we'll keep asking questions to keep that in one in your all right. How about how about this? How about it? Easier amount Russian more question for Michigan Sports while they were at Michigan. Okay, so coaches and players just play. Coaches and players. All right. So, seen backlar I would have to say Chris Webber. He was just that impactful. Who Else? Who Else? Who Else? So obviously need a football player in there. I Gosh, let's go with Desmond Howard, you know. No, let's make a Charles Wood tune, because he won a championship and the heisman. And I'm trying to think if there's like some offbeat showice I can have like some other sport. I mean Barry Larkin, by Larkins in the Baseball Hall of fame. Oh yeah, he's very glow. Larkin, Woodson and Webber. That's a nice persome yeah, that's good. That's solid. What is the most exciting moment the sporting event that you have ever attend? That you were actually there and they didn't watch it on TV, but you were at the stadium. You've ever seen it? Like what was your the were? You actually went out of your you know, because you say you're not a fan, but there's got to be a time, and I've been with reporters up there in press box and things, where it happens and it's just like the whole place erupts. Well, you ever have an event like that? Yeah, well, it's interesting, God, because I will, I mean I will die on the hell of like I am not a fan like I'm just I am not, I am not, I am right and I really another pet peeve of mine is is journalist who are fans of the teams they cover or at any rooting interest. But I will say this. I am a fan of the human race. And one nine hundred and eleven hit, you know, was just so devastating and I I knew some people who were in the true world chade center, and so that that baseball season, the last two months, you know, when play resume, was remarkable. And the moment that stands out the most to me was game five that two thousand and one world series, Yankees diamondbacks. Yankees the previous night had one after being down to their last out. Tina Martinez, it's a game time to her homer. Than jeter hits a Walkoff homer and the eleven, I think, ten or eleventh, and then so then that's game four. Game Five, they are again down to their last out, runner on base and Scott Brocious, it's a game time to run homer. I mean the place went so nuts. It was so incredible us and just with the backdrop of eleven and what everyone had been through and just the joy that people were feeling in that moment. I will say I definitely allowed myself to emotionally invest in that moment for the good of the human race. Like the great answer. I played the night before it happened. We played, I was on the broncos and we played the...

...giants in Denver and I know that's Sart because the giants were flying home and it was all happening and it was, yeah, really crazy. It was my buddy Ed McCaffrey broke his leg that game. Wow, I was going to see him. The next morning he calls me and he says, Dude, turn on new radio and then it was just it was absolutely crazy what happened. But that would get gave me chills. You talking till that story. Well, that that world series also had the greatest first pitch by when bushed through that perfect strike where man is dissessed. That was unbelievable. That's that was yeah, that's first just that was as good as it gets. Under the circumstances. It couldn't. That's unbelievable. It was phenomenal. That was game three. That was the first game at that Yankee Stadium and the now for me, that was a president's grandest moment. President Bush, that was really spectacular. That was okay, if you could be a lead singer of any s hair band, what Sam would I would say what white snake is? Here I go. Yeah, my own right. Yeah, yeah, that's a why I came proteous. That's a videos sort of the car and everything. You still have our poster, Dave, somewhere around here? Yeah, I think it's in the kids room somewhere. So I don't know where it is, but smilar. I love white snake. They were awesome. My white hates when I play them on our on our sound system here. All right. What's your favorite sports movie? I would say feel of dreams, just the magical nature of it and just that father son connection there, and James Old Jones is speech and Costner's great so athletics, so I have to go with that. Nice. All Right, Dan, are you all right? Are you okay? Lot? This will be my last one for Kenna. Are You PRODA FOR DH? I would. Yeah, in a perfect world I'm anti DH, but I don't lose any sleep over it. Fair all right, last one can win, in your opinion. Is the baseball season going to resume and if it does. Are we going to play it all in Arizona? Huh? I am betting on no season. Guys, I just don't see how we're going to do this. I think it's too difficult. There's too many risks, too many of logistical hurdles to leap. So, you know, I think if we have a normal twenty twenty one season, we should consider that a victory. Right. I how about this one more, just all right, and because talk to it. I got my eight, my Mount Rushmore ready though. Oh yeah, he's been thinking. I gave it some thought. Okay, look, so, all right, I'm ad only I'm going to cheat a little bit here. Mel Stodemyre. He did win a few as a coach, but not as a player, so I think that. I think it's fair to put him on there. I'm yeah, I'm going to put Aaron judge on there because again, we're he's most of these guys do have rings, and Aaron Judge was a rookie of the year, so I think that's fair. And so I just need one and I'll put Joe pepitone on there, just because he was such a character. That is a character. Well, can it was awesome having you on and having you join us and giving us a little bit of your background and your success and in everything you do and how sports really contributed to that. You know, we all fall in love with it Somewhel someway and and your story is wonderful and thank you for sharing it with us. Hey, thanks for having guys. Will pleasure me in both you absolutely thanks, Kevin. All right, all right, I have a great one, knt. Thank you, guys. Thank days, guys. We love you too. Hey, we want to thank you for joining us today on...

...howdle up with guests, where we talked to a wide range of guests about how supports shaped to life. As always, I'm joined by my great friend and Co host, Dave Tegar and we want you to be able to follow us on all of our social media at huddle up with Gus and we really appreciate you and thank you for your time and listening to our podcast.

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