It was a great weekend for those posing as journalists who are more interested in acting like bullhorns for the lizard people who want their messages out. I wouldn’t pretend to know all the things that go into being a dependable journalist, nor do I care much, but I do know from vague memories through hangover-hazed classes in college that it doesn’t have much to do with pushing out narratives that agents and ownership want out there. Guys like Jon Heyman and Adam Schefter, who act more as sports propaganda vehicles than actual reporters, are prime examples and proved it again.
We’ll start with Heyman, who couldn’t even let the ink on the new CBA dry before being contacted by some buddy of his in ownership to complain and attempt to gain ground in a PR war that ownership already lost and is now futile. Perhaps the most impressive thing is that Heyman can still use his fingers to tap out a tweet, considering the neck and nerve damage he must’ve sustained ferrying all the owners’ water during the lockout:
There is no “little guy” in baseball. While the Giants are one of the bigger market teams, they’re hardly the Yankees or Dodgers, even if they were able to run with the Dodgers for one season. They’ve also lost Buster Posey’s and Kevin Gausman’s salaries from last year, so even with this apparently “outlandish” deal for Carlos Rodon, at the moment they’re still some $77 million below the first tax threshold. And it should be noted that the Giants, due to various fallout from COVID, only averaged 20,734 fans per game last season. This is not a team that was rolling in it, comparatively to what they’d been and what other teams are. According to this from FanGraphs, the Giants local TV deal is exactly middle of the pack.
Every team in MLB can approach these modest numbers of a $150 million payroll. That really should have been the minimum team salary floor that players should have battled for in negotiations.
This is simply drivel to justify whatever team owner is in Heyman’s ear (my guess: Jed Hoyer of the Cubs, definitely a small market team that doesn’t want to pay to compete) to fuck over their fans and continue to rake in their revenue sharing money along with whatever TV deals they have aside from the national ones. $22 million per year might seem a lot for a pitcher who can’t go more than an hour or two without something on his body turning to goo like Rodon. But it’s also hardly a lot for a No. 2 or No. 3 starter, which Rodon is for the comet-like interval he’s actually on the mound. It’s also not a lot for a team whose ace, Logan Webb, is still on a minimum deal.
Sometimes, providing a quote without any comment or context is not exactly the job that Heyman is doing, or supposed to be doing. He’ll take the “neutrality” excuse/angle I’m sure if he were ever questioned about it, without ever sensing that amplifying the owners’ horseshit is harmful to the game. There is no justification or explanation for any team in MLB to not be going for it all guns blazing. Heyman and his fellow latchkeys give them cover.
Heyman wasn’t done:
You can’t help but be reminded of this scene:
Heyman using “winters” as a verb pretty much perfectly crystalizes why he’s so passionate about parroting any ownership-talking point he can. They come from the same place.
To give Heyman a small break, at least his deficiencies are only within baseball. He’s not actively protecting a repeatedly accused assaulter of women. But hey, the NFL likes to do things bigger than everyone, so why wouldn’t their leading toad Adam Schfter take it one step further?
Schefter later apologized, but the damage had already been done. This is vile. Not only does Schefter excuse what is looking to be a pretty heinously empty and inadequate performance from the prosecutor’s office (one witness called), he further tosses obstacles on survivors of assault by casting all of them as just empty vessels trying to sully the glorious reputation of a NFL player, whose rep is only built on simply being an NFL player. This might as well have been a statement crafted in the offices of Watson’s agent, and likely was. Schefter is a tool in prepping the ground for whatever team eventually trades for Watson and the backlash from that fanbase, however big or small that might be. And seeing as how so many fans take Schefter as some sort of oracle, it just might work.
Of course, Watson is still facing 22 civil suits, the sheer number of which is still jaw droppingly horrific. How’s Schefter going to dismiss those when the time comes? He’ll find a way, because some team will need Schefter to somehow humanize Watson for his eventual return to the field. Watson’s agent sure will. And that’s all Schefter is here for.