Keith Olbermann: New studio host for post-season MLB games

SouthernBoSox

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That was really good.  
 
That was a show that, Fox S1 should have been targeting.  Something different.  Something that makes people think just a little.  Outside the box.
 
Very Very enjoyable
 

cromulence

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CaptainLaddie said:
Seriously, I can't believe they mentioned Deadspin.  That alone made the show fun.  Isn't Will Leitch pretty much banned from all things ESPN, still?
 
Will Leitch has nothing to do with Deadspin anymore outside of the occasional movie review, and hasn't for quite a while. It's funny to think of Leitch and his New Yorker experience being persona non grata at ESPN instead of Daulerio (not that he makes appearances), who's an enormous piece of shit who made Deadspin worse.
 

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Then there's this from the Twitterverse, from last night:

Gerry Callahan ‏@GerryCallahan 13h
Best thing to happen to Fox Sports 1. “@ESPNOlbermann: In two hours...@KeithOlbermann makes his return to ESPN."

Keith Olbermann @KeithOlbermann 13h
@GerryCallahan Thanks for the pub! Nice to see you still haven't been able to get a better job in 25 years!


@Ourand_SBJ: Overnights (rounded to single digit) from 11pm-midnight last night: SportsCenter (0.6), Olbermann (0.4) Fox Sports Live (0.0).
https://twitter.com/ourand_sbj/status/372369627319242752

Not sure how this is such great thing for FS1
 

ifmanis5

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I didn't see the show but I'll bet it was good.
KO will put a lot of energy into it for about 2-3 years until he gets bored by it, turns pissy and then blows it all up. Enjoy the fun while it lasts, kids.
 

CaptainLaddie

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cromulence said:
 
Will Leitch has nothing to do with Deadspin anymore outside of the occasional movie review, and hasn't for quite a while. It's funny to think of Leitch and his New Yorker experience being persona non grata at ESPN instead of Daulerio (not that he makes appearances), who's an enormous piece of shit who made Deadspin worse.
 

Well, yeah.  But he's still hated by the higher ups at ESPN, I'm quite sure.
 

cromulence

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CaptainLaddie said:
 
Well, yeah.  But he's still hated by the higher ups at ESPN, I'm quite sure.
 
Probably. I just don't think of Leitch as the anti-sports establishment figure he was several years ago (again the whole New Yorker thing), but I'm sure they've held the grudge.
 

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Kilgore A. Trout said:
I love and miss Olberman.  But I looked on espn's site but could not find any kind of link to watch the show.  Same with hulu.  Anyone know of a way those of us who do not have cable can see the show?
 
There are a few segments up on KO's youtube channel, hopefully they'll keep putting them up. The opening was really great.
 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IhHI4Q_UXoo
 
Echoing the sentiments here. He may be a pompous dick (and I agree with his politics), but he's a great writer who works his ass off. Hopefully he can stop himself from exploding with contempt for his superiors.
 

Tony C

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On the one hand, he's a born anchor -- presence and simple literacy place him above the crowd. On the other hand, I can't share all the praise here: it's an hour by KO about KO...you guys seriously think viewers will want that? From the Keithlights (really?) to This Day in Keith History (or whatever it was called -- perhaps the stupidest segment in history) this is less a sports show and more an hour of KO looking in his mirror (and loving what he sees).
 
Oh, and the long segment on Mehta was stupid and factually misleading if you knew anything about the story.
 

ifmanis5

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So what's wrong with that? I'll gladly take 2-3 years of a quality show.
Didn't say it was bad.
Saying there was been a life-long pattern established so enjoy the good times now while he's fully engaged because it likely won't last that long.
 

The Napkin

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Tony C said:
Oh, and the long segment on Mehta was stupid and factually misleading if you knew anything about the story.
 
You can take the man out of msnbc but you can't take the msnbc out of the man?
 

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SouthernBoSox said:
That was really good.  
 
That was a show that, Fox S1 should have been targeting.  Something different.  Something that makes people think just a little.  Outside the box.
 
Very Very enjoyable
 
If FS had nabbed Olbermann and Kilborn that would have been awesome
 

ifmanis5

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AlNipper49 said:
 
If FS had nabbed Olbermann and Kilborn that would have been awesome
That would be great except there is no way KO would work for FOX and Kilborn's, shall we say, 'hands on' approach to female staffers has basically tanked his career.
 

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I thought KO blow-torching Mehta was great.  The facts may suggest differently, but a random Tweet with a rhetorical supposition followed by using his own Tweet as a source sums up Mehta's approach to "reporting" the news pretty succinctly, imo.  The satire was amusing, though I'm not sure I could stand 15 minutes of that every night.
 

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I live in the UK and can't watch Olbermann's show, but I've now watched every clip from his YouTube channel and would happily devour more. He's an arrogant blowhard who likes the sound of his own voice, but he's a damn intelligent arrogant blowhard who likes the sound of his own voice - ESPN already had plenty of the former, but being the latter can make for great TV (and accurate commentary).
 

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His rabid ADHD combined with his vast cultural literacy works so well on his current show - which is broadcast live - that it has become instant "must-watch" TV. The fender bender/Giant Glass reference to Nap's home run that landed on the garage (all in a wicked good Boston accent) made me spill my coffee among many many laughs. 
 

cromulence

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GlenMorangie said:
Just watched him "dissect" Pete Prisco's column on concussions in the NFL.

Olbermann used an insufferable staccato of "back to the column" between each of his soap box sessions where he quasi-mocked Prisco. It was a find & replace with CBS Sports/Prisco taking the place of Fox News/O'reilly.

I agreed with his overall point, but his style is exhausting to me and ruins the whole experience. He was much more fun 25 years ago.
 
I disagree, I think it was effective. He certainly has his own style and doesn't mind stirring up the pathos but I thought it was appropriate here because Prisco's column was just that awful.
 
By the way, here's the video:
 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d6OklMbxkw8
 

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cromulence said:
 
I disagree, I think it was effective. He certainly has his own style and doesn't mind stirring up the pathos but I thought it was appropriate here because Prisco's column was just that awful.
 
 
 
Seven or eight minutes of national TV coverage with video that's all over social and sports media is exactly the sort of thing Prisco was after.  KO is just feeding the troll.
 

joe dokes

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B H Kim said:
 
Seven or eight minutes of national TV coverage with video that's all over social and sports media is exactly the sort of thing Prisco was after.  KO is just feeding the troll.
 
Olbermann doesn't care about that. I suspect his view is, "If you think it's good publicity to be exposed as a shithead moron, then OK."  Maybe that's anachronistic in these days of people making money making asses of themselves, but I dont think Olbermann should shy away from it.
 
That was very effective. And it was accurate. he used Prisco's own words. The people that write this shit like Prisco are bullies and/or jock sniffers.. The only way to respond to a bully is to kick him in the teeth.
 

Dehere

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It's an awful column.
 
But after nearly 8 minutes of sanctimony we still don't know if Olbermann thinks the players agreed to a good deal or not because he'd rather go after the low-hanging fruit of media meta-criticism than address the actual issue.
 

Alex18

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as someone who didn't see olbermann when he was at espn at any other time (im 20 so all i know is the legend) I think hes fucking hilarious and i loved how he picked apart pricso. Granted he definitely seems like a pompous douche but i think i can overlook that for now
 

joe dokes

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Dehere said:
It's an awful column.
 
But after nearly 8 minutes of sanctimony we still don't know if Olbermann thinks the players agreed to a good deal or not because he'd rather go after the low-hanging fruit of media meta-criticism than address the actual issue.
 
Its not sanctimony. Its criticism. He has an hour. Maybe he has spoken about the settlement itself at another time. Maybe not. Maybe unlike some, he's going to take a few minutes and figure it out. Or maybe have someone on the show with more expertise than he does. (Thinking about it and exprtise being two things that neither ESPN nor sports media in general are famous for).
But its hardly low hanging fruit when a guy employed by a network that broadcasts NFL games -- who appears on their studio shows -- says something like that.
 
Certainly by going after Pricso, we know that he thinks the they "They signed up for this" argument is bullshit.
 

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I see some of the same criticisms of KO that Howard Cosell used to get back in his heyday. Too New York, too pompous, too ... intelligent. Cosell was way ahead of his rivals back in the 1960s, asking tough questions and taking on hard issues. Olbermann is similar to Cosell in the way he delivers his message, too. Cosell could speak extemporaneously, wthout a script, and time everything down to the final second before breaking to commercial. Olbermann has a staccato delivery that is remarkable, if only for the amount of words he crams into every rant. He rarely slips over a word.
 
Cosell hated the newspaper columnists who attacked him. He returned fire with heavier artillery. Critics mocked him but no one denied he wasn't interesting. Same goes for Olbermann. I think we should enjoy the time he has for this show, the two or three years before he implodes once again. In a vast wasteland of smugness, KO is trying to give the public what it wants, regardless of what the big shots in sports think.
 
KO is also socially awkward, introverted in real life, very similar to Cosell, who had few friends outside of his immediate family.
 
terrynever said:
KO is also socially awkward, introverted in real life, very similar to Cosell, who had few friends outside of his immediate family.
I've always heard people say this. That he's a social misfit or awkward - that just sounds like bulls hit rationalization from his fans who feel the need to explain him. I've never met Olbermann but I have two friends who worked for him and said he was a terrible human being. Belittling and obnoxious...Just a bad guy who treated everybody poorly. Politically, I probably agreed with 75% of his MSNBC show but I just had to stop watching because he was such a sanctimonious blowhard. I tried his new show but couldn't finish it. It's too bad because I'm sure a lot of it will be great. He's a brilliant guy with original ideas but I just can't get past the asshole factor. I'm sure that's my loss but whatever...
 

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I once worked for a guy like Olbermann who was extremely liberal in his political views, yet cared more about social status than anyone I've ever met and treated his grad students like indentured servants. One time this guy actually said he thought it shouldn't really be murder to kill "bums." (I'm not saying that Olbermann feels the same way, I'm just illustrating the dichotomy between being a theoretically empathetic liberal politically and a deliberately hurtful person in your private life.)
 
In both cases I think it's a self-esteem issue. People who bully other people -whether it be physically or intellectually- are compensating for their own feelings of inadequacy. It's very plausible that Olbermann's lack of social skills could lead him to act like this.
 

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BannedbyNYYFans.com said:
I've always heard people say this. That he's a social misfit or awkward - that just sounds like bulls hit rationalization from his fans who feel the need to explain him. I've never met Olbermann but I have two friends who worked for him and said he was a terrible human being. Belittling and obnoxious...Just a bad guy who treated everybody poorly. Politically, I probably agreed with 75% of his MSNBC show but I just had to stop watching because he was such a sanctimonious blowhard. I tried his new show but couldn't finish it. It's too bad because I'm sure a lot of it will be great. He's a brilliant guy with original ideas but I just can't get past the asshole factor. I'm sure that's my loss but whatever...
 
Absolutely -- many of the people who worked with him say he was damn near impossible to work with.  But outside of work, I;m not sure his personality carried over. In fact, I've heard very little about him outside of work. For one thing, he was never implicated in the frat-boy carousing that seemed to permeate ESPN.
 
 
 I see some of the same criticisms of KO that Howard Cosell used to get back in his heyday. Too New York, too pompous, too ... intelligent. Cosell was way ahead of his rivals back in the 1960s, asking tough questions and taking on hard issues. Olbermann is similar to Cosell in the way he delivers his message, too. Cosell could speak extemporaneously, wthout a script, and time everything down to the final second before breaking to commercial. Olbermann has a staccato delivery that is remarkable, if only for the amount of words he crams into every rant. He rarely slips over a word.
 
Cosell hated the newspaper columnists who attacked him. He returned fire with heavier artillery. Critics mocked him but no one denied he wasn't interesting. Same goes for Olbermann. I think we should enjoy the time he has for this show, the two or three years before he implodes once again. is trying to give the public what it wants, regardless of what the big shots in sports think.
 
KO is also socially awkward, introverted in real life, very similar to Cosell, who had few friends outside of his immediate family.
 
 
I think the Cosell comparison is pretty good.  Cosell managed to stay with one employer for his whole career, however. That could be because he didn't have nearly as many choices as Olbermann has.  But the stuff that's said about Olbermann sounds very similar to what was said about Cosell.
 
To me, what some describe as 'smug," I see as pissed-off. His pissed off that there are actually humans that could think as Pricso does. He's pissed off that a college coach can get a 9-figure contract, bolt the team inches ahead of the sanctions committee, get another job right away, yet the player who transfers gets fucked.
 
The thing that sets his pissed-offness apart from the angry-guy rants on other programs is that he's usually accurate in the factual basis for his anger. Even if you dont agree with his take on those facts, you usually cant dispute the facts he bases his opinions on. OTOH--when a local radio jock rants about some sports transgression or another, it seems like you can count on the fact that his anger is based on "facts" that are at best half-truths. 
 

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Nick Carfafo reports Pedro Martinez and Bobby Valentine will join Olbermann in the studio.

https://twitter.com/nickcafardo/status/377571070733455360
 

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minischwab said:
Keith has been killing it on a nightly basis with his monologue.  His highlights are also still more entertaining than most. But he took it to a new level this week, giving Bobby V his "Worst Person in Sports" 2 straight nights. 
 
http://www.awfulannouncing.com/2013/september/keith-olbermann-shreds-bobby-valentine-for-9-11-comments.html
Looking forward to the two of them working together on TBS for the MLB Postseason broadcasts.  Awkward.  Pedro to be the peacemaker.
http://www.bostonglobe.com/sports/2013/09/12/pedro-martinez-join-tbs-postseason-baseball-coverage/G85mVG0m4UzSJL5wOSJiVP/story.html
 

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Olbermann's rant (which is being pushed by ESPN's baseball personalities) about the Red Sox' self-congratulatory Mo tribute is both entirely unsurprising and completely obnoxious. I hope I'm never as sour as he is.
 
Have fun!
 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?list=UUdJtV6wXT6lnrvldU_urowQ&v=z9hQl_DqPMk
 

ForKeeps

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So, the "classy" thing to do on Opening Day in '05 would have been to boo Rivera? I'm confused. Or I guess total silence? God, what a douchebag.
 

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Before 2004, he wrote that the Red Sox - Yankees rivalry was essentially dead to him after attending the '78 playoff game. The sentiment was something along the lines of not being able to imagine a moment that could top that, so the rivalry for him was no longer as important. I guess that is no longer the case. 
 

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Vinho Tinto said:
Before 2004, he wrote that the Red Sox - Yankees rivalry was essentially dead to him after attending the '78 playoff game. The sentiment was something along the lines of not being able to imagine a moment that could top that, so the rivalry for him was no longer as important. I guess that is no longer the case. 
 
He started his rant about the gifts on Twitter Sunday night in real time. When someone tweeted to him that it didn't surprise them that he didn't like it because he was a Yankees fan, his response was that he WASN'T a Yankees fan. His history on the subject, supplied mostly by him over the years, would contradict that. (He also took the opportunity to name drop John Farrell as a friend of his as a way of explaining that he wasn't biased against the Red Sox.)
 

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He's actually good friends with Francona. Terry's cousin, Rick Francona, used to be a military analyst on MSNBC, so KO and Terry know each other through him. Terry invited KO to sit in the dugout with him in a Spring Training game in 2008. So probably not a surprise he would also be friendly with Farrell.
 
KO also mentioned in his defense of the Yankees, re: Bobby V's 9/11 screed, that "no one would be happier to see the Yankees melt in the hot sun" or something to that effect. That was prior to Sunday.
 

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KO's denial of fandom rings hollow. 
 
This is from a 2010 article in the Village Voice:
 
the title of the piece :

Keith Olbermann: New York Yankees Super-Fan
 http://blogs.villagevoice.com/runninscared/2010/10/keith_olbermann_2.php

 
Olbermann is the perfect person to review the Mantle book, the editors write, because, "Well into his 20s, Keith Olbermann was an 'insatiable' Yankees fan." 
 
 
From a linked NY Times piece.
 
Who is Olbermann’s favorite Yankee nowadays? He said it would have to be Mariano Rivera: “With no offense meant to them, there have been other Jeters and Posadas and Pettittes. There has been no other Rivera.”
 
FWIW in 2011 KO was fired from his job of announcing the MFY annual old-timers game.  
 

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Also:
 
New York Times, June 15, 2011:  "A former ESPN anchor and a lifelong Yankees fan, Olbermann is a deeply knowledgeable baseball wonk."
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/19/magazine/olbermanns-rage-is-all-the-rage.html?pagewanted=all
 
Hollywood Reporter, June 5, 2013:  "A dedicated New York Yankees historian with an encyclopedic knowledge of the baseball, Olbermann began his television career as a sports reporter for CNN in 1981 ..."
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/keith-olbermann-returning-tv-turner-562696
 

 
 

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My main takeaway from the last few posts is that MSNBC has a military analyst.
 

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I don't watch it live, but I catch the podcast frequently.  He's still the boisterous almost-asshole he was on MSNBC, but it really works in sports.  Also, the fact that he feels that its ok to criticize anyone, INCLUDING ESPN, for media hackery is really nice.  Its about time ESPN had someone other than their hapless Ombudsman that can call them out for some of the hack-ier things they do.