A very interesting past few days in the world of Sports. Yesterday I heard an interview that Dan Patrick had with David Wells about comments that Wells made regarding Roger Clemens' perks he has with the New York Yankees this year. Evidently according to Wells, the comment he made was taken out of context and if the reporter printed the entire story than Wells would not have come across as saying something negative about a former teammate.
Fast forward to comments that Curt Schilling makes on Barry Bonds. How does Schilling apologize? Through a reporter or interview? No, but via his blog, 38 Pitches. And if you take a quick read of his blog he of course has a lot of good posts on a variety of subjects plus tons of comments. I wonder if 38pitches grows and grows will Schilling ever need to talk with a newspaper reported again? Of course he will, but I'm sure in the not too distant future a popular sports star with a popular blog will just refuse to talk with newspaper reporters and only conduct live radio or TV interviews and then communicate via their own blog. Seriously no more misquotes, right? Ability to say what you want without having it filtered.
As you can see from the Alexa graph, 38pitches has a lot of traffic already, especially considering that it looks like it has only be around for a few months. And, when you compare it with boston.com (Boston Globe's online website) you can start thinking, hmmm I wonder if Schilling can get enough traffic so the only place to see written comments from Schilling is via his blog?
What happens if he starts selling advertising on his website? Video blogging, pod casts, the list goes on and on. The web can theoretically eliminate newspaper sports reporters especially if super stars decide to take their communication into their own fingers.
Back in the day, newspaper reporters were such a critical component of our opinion of sports figures. They got access that fans could only dream about and really set the tone for how a sports personality was viewed by the public. Case in point... watch 61 again to see how the news press portrays Roger Maris' pursuit of Ruth's single season home run record because they deemed Mantle the legitimate successor (BTW - Maris is the real single season home run record holder. The 'roid boys have no claim on that record).
If more super stars follow Schilling's lead, I wonder how long it will take until the newspaper sports reporter becomes a baseball relic like counting 9 balls for a walk...