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There Is A Tide In The Affairs Of Men…

Wednesday, October 17, 2007  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt

It’s Tribe Time Now.

All sports fans, but especially Tribe fans, will enjoy this interview with America’s finest sportswriter Terry Pluto, who was my guest on the show before Monday’s game.  (Audio here.

I read Terrry’s book 2006 Dealing about the current Indians on the flight home yesterday.  If the Indians put away the ALCS tomorrow or over the weekend, journalists covering the series will want to have it shipped overnight before the World Series begins.  It is a wonderful read on how a championship ball club is built, and everyone in the Indians organization from owner Paul Dolan and GM Mark Shapiro and manager Eric Wedge was on the record with Pluto.

(Chuck Crow/The Plain Dealer)

New media types: Enjoy this Cleveland Plain Dealer feature that links to other papers’/websites’ coverage, especially the Boston media.  Pluto and I discussed the PD’s aggressive move towards the web:

HH: My theory that the has been so successful, because they hired a sports guy to run it, Jim Brady, and he knows about breaking news, he knows about how…it’s the first thing you said in the first segment. If it’s tomorrow, it’s old. It’s over. Nobody cares about a game two days ago. 

TP: Right. 

HH: And that his sensibilities are breaking news, as I think yours are, and I think the Plain Dealer may be figuring out that the heart of their internet audience is going to be their sports page.

TP: Well, I mean the interesting thing, Hugh, is that the Plain Dealer’s circulation actually went up about 1% a year ago. Now it’s not a lot, but compared to other papers… [# More #]

HH: Yeah. 

TP: …it’s there. And I do think with the people they have now, Susan Goldberg running the paper, and then they brought in Deborah Adams Simmons from the Akron Beacon Journal, my former editor there, along with Roy Hewitt who does sports, especially on the sports side, they’re going to put more stuff into sports. Look, sports, politics, I remember somebody once said you know what a lot of the blogs are? They’re commentary on commentary?

HH: Right.

TP: I mean, they’ve read something somewhere that just angered them in the New York Times, or Pluto’s an idiot here… 

HH: Right. 

TP: And that just starts it off. Well, we want to stay out in front so that we’re driving the commentary on commentary. Now you’ve got to think about it differently, and frankly, you have to write stuff that people can read….

HH:  Terry, during the break, I want to go back to what it’s like to be a sportswriter. But you were saying the Plain Dealer is surfing this technological revolution, and they’re throwing more and more online. Not many newspapers are getting this yet.

TP: Well, if you want to survive, you do. And I think here’s one of the advantages of being in a town like Cleveland, where we’ve lost industry, and we’ve had to keep reinventing ourselves. I mean, in a sense, we’re almost like the Indians pitcher Paul Byrd who has to keep reinventing yourself, you know, come through injuries or whatever. You can’t just sit there and say I’m in New York, or I’m in Washington, and I’m in Los Angeles, and people are just going to come to me and read my paper, because I’m the L.A. Times, so genuflect and kiss my knee. You know, you can’t do that in Cleveland. And the remarkable thing is the other night, the game ended at 1:38 in the morning, when the Indians beat the Red Sox. The papers that went to our immediate seven county area all had the score in it.

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