So long, Framingham Lou (and other WEEI discussions)

MyDaughterLovesTomGordon

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I know there's an old WEEI thread somewhere, but new threads are good and the news is out today that Lou Merloni is leaving WEEI, Christian Fauria is moving to middays with Gresh, Rich Keefe is being "reassigned," and MegO (Meghan Ottolini) will anchor the drive-time (I guess) with Christian Arcand, who just recently came over to produce after being let go by 98.5.

I must say, I will not miss Lou. He's sorta fine, but I don't think he brings much to the table you can't get elsewhere. He doesn't do much homework, he's not funny, and he doesn't really give much insight to the Sox despite having actually played for them. But I did kind of enjoy Lou, Fauria, and MegO together. I think Ottolini is funny and knows what she's talking about and bosses around Fauria, who I think is sort of loveable as the doofus character. I sorta thought if they could get a better straight man than Merloni, they'd have something, and Arcand could do that.

But Fauria's going to midday with Gresh? Why? Gresh is awful and I think Keefe is sorta funny and I'd rather listen to him if I have to listen to anyone.

I get that 98.5 crushes WEEI in Boston, but I'm in Maine and I don't have 98.5 as an option (or didn't until recently you can get the morning show on 102.9) and I think EEI is doing some interesting stuff with incorporating women and giving Wiggins a big role and I have to admit that I maybe think Greg Hill is a talented radio host, even if I don't like his politics much when it pops up.

I'm not saying any of it is any great shakes, but I do like sports radio, in general, because it's in realtime, and I spend a lot of time in the car, and it would nice if WEEI could get its act all the way together.
 
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The Mort Report

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I don't search out talk radio anymore, but I hear more Felger and Mazz than I'd like since if the last thing I was watching the night before was the C's, when I turn my TV on the next day they're usually on. I don't know how it compares to WEEI, but damn that show is cringy fairly often. They also seem to know a fair chunk of their callers. I wonder if WEEI realized that by diversifying the voices and not being so abrasive in tone they can reach a wider audience, including younger people(via podcasts of the show, not radio).
 

Patriot_Reign

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As per usual WEEI's staffing changes are a bit odd. Never had an issue with Merloni, either daytime radio or Red Sox broadcast he brought value, imo.

Keefe is cut but how anyone thinks Gresh brings in listeners is curious, dude is an instant channel changer.
 

StuckOnYouk

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I gotta say, I love Keefe more than any of the names mentioned above. Knows his stuff and is funny.

How they hell they come up with these decisions is beyond me.

I like Merloni at times but he constantly hates on Bloom which is odd - even with the ACLS run last year he hated on Bloom til the end.
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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I don't have access to WEEI but nothing makes me happier than seeing Christian Arcand get more responsibility. Its like a member of our family finding success.
 

grimshaw

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Merloni and Fauria became a lot better when MegO came on board. She was able to reel them in, and they didn't talk over her. I still don't like either of the former though. Lou would run with the same talking points with no nuance for an entire week, and Fauria is just loudly unfunny.

Rich Keefe is the best thing they have. I definitely won't be tuning in midday anymore.
 

Pablo's TB Lover

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I can only figure Greg Hill has a good contract because his show doesn't get touched as opposed to the other 2 time slots, when all the shows are performing the same relative to the Sports Hub.

Same with @grimshaw , despite my perception of GRESH! the Gresh and Keefe show was actually more listenable for me than Zolak and Bertrand. I don't see Gresh and Fauria being a good mix AT ALL. But if they did a 98.5 "cast-offs" show with Arcand and Keefe with MegO, the ratings may not improve much but it will draw me back in as a drive-time listener of WEEI whereas I've been not tuning in to any station regularly 2-6pm since several years into Felger & Mazz.
 

shawnrbu

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Is Lou leaving to join NESN for Sox games?

Surprised EEI hasn’t given Mark Dondero a bigger role.

Is Keefe going back to the Sports Hub to be with Adam Jones?
 

NortheasternPJ

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I can only figure Greg Hill has a good contract because his show doesn't get touched as opposed to the other 2 time slots, when all the shows are performing the same relative to the Sports Hub.

Same with @grimshaw , despite my perception of GRESH! the Gresh and Keefe show was actually more listenable for me than Zolak and Bertrand. I don't see Gresh and Fauria being a good mix AT ALL. But if they did a 98.5 "cast-offs" show with Arcand and Keefe with MegO, the ratings may not improve much but it will draw me back in as a drive-time listener of WEEI whereas I've been not tuning in to any station regularly 2-6pm since several years into Felger & Mazz.
It has to be. That show is so so bad I don't know how anyone listens to more than 5 minutes without getting bored.

Glad to see WEEI is at least trying. I don't see how pairing Fauria and Gresh fixes anything at all though. Gresh & Keefe was actually a decent show.
 

BaseballJones

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I think Lou and Christian together are pretty good - better than any afternoon drive group they've had in a long time. But maybe that's just not saying much.

Keefe is pretty good and I think he works well with Gresh (who I don't love).
 

shaggydog2000

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Gresh has to have some incredibly incriminating photos of some exec, otherwise I have no explanation for him having a job in radio.

Keefe was great, hope he gets a better gig in the future.
 

BigJimEd

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Merloni and Fauria became a lot better when MegO came on board. She was able to reel them in, and they didn't talk over her. I still don't like either of the former though. Lou would run with the same talking points with no nuance for an entire week, and Fauria is just loudly unfunny.

Rich Keefe is the best thing they have. I definitely won't be tuning in midday anymore.
Haven't listened in quite a while so cannot speak to MegO but agree with the rest of this post. Merloni just isn't very good and Fauria is bad.

I thought Keefe was pretty good but again haven't listened in a while due to the other two, Certainly not going to with Gresh and Fauria. That is one bottom of the barrel pairing.
 

Pablo's TB Lover

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My Framingham people who are somewhat in the know said that Merloni wants to do TV/Radio for the Sox and that ownership loves him.
Yes I could see leverage with NESN for Lou, after Eck's departure. They need more color guys in the bullpen and I don't see recent players like Youk who had a lucrative career wanting to take like half the slate of games. Based on the Steve Lyons experience, I'd think NESN will lean taking the local retread rather than picking off someone experienced from a different market.
 

Patriot_Reign

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I hope Keefe keeps his job, but that's a nut punch of shift change. Going from 10-2 to 6pm or 7pm to 10pm or 11pm at night sucks, especially with a kid.
His wife is a chef too, so assuming she already works evenings I'm not sure how they swing those schedules with a young kid.

With 98.5 laying off people a little while ago and Felger recently saying if they don't figure out ways to bring in even more revenue their will be more layoffs coming I doubt anyone is going from 'EEI back to 98.5.
 

NortheasternPJ

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His wife is a chef too, so assuming she already works evenings I'm not sure how they swing those schedules with a young kid.

With 98.5 laying off people a little while ago and Felger recently saying if they don't figure out ways to bring in even more revenue their will be more layoffs coming I doubt anyone is going from 'EEI back to 98.5.
Keefe didn’t say a word on it to start the show but I don’t think they even brought it up so who knows what’s going on. Bringing in Arcand to replace Fauria and Merloni on the afternoon slot at what I’m assuming is a fraction of the cost would be a huge upgrade but also make sense from a cost standpoint. I started listening to the Adam Jones show a bunch in the pandemic because he worked so well with Jones, who is awful. Since he left the Jones show, that show is back to being the worst show on Boston Sports Radio. It’s either him or Hillman.

Although snubbing Keefe for Arcand in prime time Drive would sting for Keefe but it’s not like he’s in a position of power.

Fred’s been on it for weeks but when Wallach gets the Cs gig he doesn’t expect them to backfill him with a real show member. I’d imagine the 3 person shows are going to go extinct. They’re already shifting costs by putting Wallach on road games they don’t have to pay Gorman on and saving money.
 

NortheasternPJ

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Lou saying he's most likely going to the Red Sox Radio Broadcast and was kind of forced into it. Also crapping over how sports radio is exhausting and they have to be negative all the time and it's not a lot of fun and a grind. Basically saying the job made him a negative person.
 
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pappymojo

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I know there's an old WEEI thread somewhere, but new threads are good and the news is out today that Lou Merloni is leaving WEEI, Christian Fauria is moving to middays with Gresh, Rich Keefe is being "reassigned," and MegO (Meghan Ottolini) will anchor the drive-time (I guess) with Christian Arcand, who just recently came over to produce after being let go by 98.5.

I must say, I will not miss Lou. He's sorta fine, but I don't think he brings much to the table you can't get elsewhere. He doesn't do much homework, he's not funny, and he doesn't really give much insight to the Sox despite having actually played for them. But I did kind of enjoy Lou, Fauria, and MegO together. I think Ottolini is funny and knows what she's talking about and bosses around Fauria, who I think is sort of loveable as the doofus character. I sorta thought if they could get a better straight man than Merloni, they'd have something, and Arcand could do that.

But Fauria's going to midday with Gresh? Why? Gresh is awful and I think Keefe is sorta funny and I'd rather listen to him if I have to listen to anyone.

I get that 98.5 crushes WEEI in Boston, but I'm in Maine and I don't have 98.5 as an option (or didn't until recently you can get the morning show on 102.9) and I think EEI is doing some interesting stuff with incorporating women and giving Wiggins a big role and I have to admit that I maybe think Greg Hill is a talented radio host, even if I don't like his politics much when it pops up.

I'm not saying any of it is any great shakes, but I do like sports radio, in general, because it's in realtime, and I spend a lot of time in the car, and it would nice if WEEI could get its act all the way together.
I feel/felt the same way. Lou adds nothing and I'm okay seeing him go. Gresh is awful. Keefe was the only one that I liked. Wouldn't be upset if Keefe was on the afternoon show with Meg O.
 

NortheasternPJ

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View: https://twitter.com/bostonradio/status/1602441212518072321?s=20&t=K94jfhiffTnZAJ2wqR_XUg


“From sources with direct knowledge of the situation, EEI management has indeed notified Mut that he’s done there. Final show is on 12/22 before Jets/Jags TNF game. Rich Keefe be the new evening host.”
I love Keefe but he needs a cohost. Sending him out there solo I can’t see working. His quick sarcasm is his best attribute. Him solo seems like a huge swing and a miss
 

MyDaughterLovesTomGordon

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I get that Mutt isn’t anyone’s favorite, but that dude has worked his ass off for EEI, takes every crappy shift, and always at least is prepared and has a plan for his show.

Shitcanning him at Christmas is rough.

And agreed on Keefe - solo is not where he’s going to shine. That’s brutal for him.

This all seems more like cost-cutting and streamlining than actually trying to improve programming to be competitive. Feels like a prelude to format change/folding up shop.
 

Pablo's TB Lover

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I get that Mutt isn’t anyone’s favorite, but that dude has worked his ass off for EEI, takes every crappy shift, and always at least is prepared and has a plan for his show.

Shitcanning him at Christmas is rough.

And agreed on Keefe - solo is not where he’s going to shine. That’s brutal for him.

This all seems more like cost-cutting and streamlining than actually trying to improve programming to be competitive. Feels like a prelude to format change/folding up shop.
I always liked Mutt at night, actually enjoyed him as the straight man with Mikey Adams briefly and he's a good newsy type of guy to do a solo show during evenings when you are doing quick analysis of results coming in. The fact they are moving Keefe to evenings solo tells me they are definitely letting the sports radio format die. Which is a shame because I want there to be checks and balances to 98.5. And if Beasley cuts cost and loses hosts too, then you are staring at either NPR or a bunch of right-wing political hosts as your only live talk radio options.
 

24JoshuaPoint

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Also agree on Keefe not being great solo. His quick replies are one of the only laugh out loud parts of the current show. What a mess.

I have never looked at those ratings before (or listened to the other channel); why is WEEI just so much worse as a whole compared to the other channel?
 

Leskanic's Thread

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Just looking at broad biographical brush strokes, Merloni seems the natural successor to Remy as long-term primary Red Sox color man.

I'm worried what a bunch of years in the sports talk world in between his playing days and settling into the booth would do to his approach. My memory of him as the third guy in the booth on the radio broadcast was that he liked to inject takes and focus on storylines, set up as if it's stuff connected to his experiences on the field. But maybe I was overreacting to his performance. Or, if I wasn't, that he'd get better at not falling into those traps over time.

Of course, if the best outcome is "he's a sports talk voice on the Sox broadcast who isn't Maz," that's still some degree of progress.
 

crystalline

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I was reminiscing about the old days of Ted Sarandis on late nights at WEEI. He was a good analyst but his constant “everyone loves the Pats no one loves BC football” got tired.

I found that there’s a Ted Sarandis parody Twitter account that trolls Gerry Callahan.

truly the internet is a wonder
 

CantKeepmedown

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Lou saying he's most likely going to the Red Sox Radio Broadcast and was kind of forced into it. Also crapping over how sports radio is exhausting and they have to be negative all the time and it's not a lot of fun and a grind. Basically saying the job made him a negative person.
Do they feel like they have to be negative all the time because the station that is killing them in the ratings does the same thing? I haven't listened in a long, long time. But I do follow some of the characters on Twitter and it's just a constant stream of shit. They actively root against the local teams and criticize every chance they get (more 98.5 than EEI) I know it's all about the clicks, but certainly does seem exhausting, especially if it's just an act.
 

NortheasternPJ

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Do they feel like they have to be negative all the time because the station that is killing them in the ratings does the same thing? I haven't listened in a long, long time. But I do follow some of the characters on Twitter and it's just a constant stream of shit. They actively root against the local teams and criticize every chance they get (more 98.5 than EEI) I know it's all about the clicks, but certainly does seem exhausting, especially if it's just an act.
He didn't refer to 98.5 or anything but he basically said that when things are good, there's nothing to talk about for 4 hours a day. So in order to get people to call you dig and find storylines, which are usually negative.

It's funny when people say 98.5 is really negative. It definitely is from 2pm on but T&R are not negative and Beetle & Zo isn't really negative either, except for their takes on Red Sox management. Once you get into 2pm on it's awful. F&M and Adam Jones actively root against the teams and I don't get how that's enjoyable.
 

jimv

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I expect he would become the color guy, with Remy and Eck gone their different ways
But that's the TV booth, iirc this was in regards to the radio. Castiglione and Flemming are the radio booth, they are both p-b-p guys and alternate during the course of a game. I could see Merloni as a color guy but does that means 75 year old Castig does p-b-p for every inning of every game? Or maybe Flemming/Castig split the p-b-p role and Merloni is full time color
 

shaggydog2000

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Do they feel like they have to be negative all the time because the station that is killing them in the ratings does the same thing? I haven't listened in a long, long time. But I do follow some of the characters on Twitter and it's just a constant stream of shit. They actively root against the local teams and criticize every chance they get (more 98.5 than EEI) I know it's all about the clicks, but certainly does seem exhausting, especially if it's just an act.
It's been years since I listened to him, but Lou was also really lazy and fell back on back in my day stories. When challenged he'd condescend and pull the I played baseball in the majors and you didn't schtick. He wouldn't have to bring negativity if he brought knowledge.
 

Lose Remerswaal

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But that's the TV booth, iirc this was in regards to the radio. Castiglione and Flemming are the radio booth, they are both p-b-p guys and alternate during the course of a game. I could see Merloni as a color guy but does that means 75 year old Castig does p-b-p for every inning of every game? Or maybe Flemming/Castig split the p-b-p role and Merloni is full time color
I misread the earlier post. I think he's going to NESN to be color guy, not to the radio booth.
 

jimv

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I misread the earlier post. I think he's going to NESN to be color guy, not to the radio booth.
My bad, that would be a big step up for him. As a radio color guy I think he's improved from awful to mediocre, maybe he'd be more suited to TV
 

mandro ramtinez

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I was reminiscing about the old days of Ted Sarandis on late nights at WEEI. He was a good analyst but his constant “everyone loves the Pats no one loves BC football” got tired.

I found that there’s a Ted Sarandis parody Twitter account that trolls Gerry Callahan.

truly the internet is a wonder
Ted was one of a very small group of true believers in BC Basketball and Big East basketball during the Al Skinner years. I remember Ted fondly at least for that. He was a bit of a scold though. 8!
 

onthereg527

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I was reminiscing about the old days of Ted Sarandis on late nights at WEEI. He was a good analyst but his constant “everyone loves the Pats no one loves BC football” got tired.

I found that there’s a Ted Sarandis parody Twitter account that trolls Gerry Callahan.

truly the internet is a wonder
I'll never forget the Sarandis quote that they used to play on the Big Show all the time - 'If the Conte Forum isn't sold out on Saturday night, then I don't know what we're doing in life."
 

Patriot_Reign

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Damn that sucks about Mut. They've thrown him in odd fitting shows at all hours of the day and it seems like he always took it in stride. The glory days of radio shows getting Big Show and D&C million dollar salaries seem long gone.

BRW also had a tweet saying the Sox paid 12 million for the radio rights like year, but only made 8 million through advertising back.

edit: Meanwhile despite also getting terrible ratings the Greg Hill show remains untouched.
 

Quiddity

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I was reminiscing about the old days of Ted Sarandis on late nights at WEEI. He was a good analyst but his constant “everyone loves the Pats no one loves BC football” got tired.

I found that there’s a Ted Sarandis parody Twitter account that trolls Gerry Callahan.

truly the internet is a wonder
Good ol' Ted Sarandis, the two biggest things I remember about him was his love of BC basketball and his desire for them to build a retractable roof for Fenway Park. Poor Ted, all these years later, still no retractable roof...
 

NortheasternPJ

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Good ol' Ted Sarandis, the two biggest things I remember about him was his love of BC basketball and his desire for them to build a retractable roof for Fenway Park. Poor Ted, all these years later, still no retractable roof...
if only we got the Mega-Tarp
 

dirtynine

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I consistently read the title of this thread as if Elton John was signing it.

WEE-iiiii-iiii-iiii, iiii-yi-yi yi yi.
 

JimD

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I rarely listen to Boston sports radio anymore, but the few times I listened to him I liked Mut. He seemed to know how to riff without relying on negativity and made for a good background listen on an evening drive.
 

TheWizard

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I rarely listen to Boston sports radio anymore, but the few times I listened to him I liked Mut. He seemed to know how to riff without relying on negativity and made for a good background listen on an evening drive.
My sentiments exactly, good background in the evening as I was dropping/picking up my kids etc. He seemed to genuinely like sports too. Was he must listen radio, no. But Idon't think that's the point of night time talk etc.

A bit ironic that Mutt and Lou both out at the same time, as they came on WEEI at the same time.
 
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Pablo's TB Lover

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My sentiments exactly, good background in the evening as I was dropping/picking up my kids etc. He seemed to genuinely like sports too. Was he must listen radio, no. But Idon't think that's the point of night time talk etc.

A bit ironic that Mutt and Lou both out at the same time, as they came on WEEI at the same time.
Exactly, I looked at the evenings as "does this host make me actively want to change the station?" When I used to attend many more Sox games yearly, I just wanted to listen to the WEEI postgame without feeling the need to turn the dial. Ted Sarandis and Mikey Adams definitely tested our mettle nightly, but Mutt was a guy you could "set and forget" and know you weren't going to hear cringeworthy takes.
 

Humphrey

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Good ol' Ted Sarandis, the two biggest things I remember about him was his love of BC basketball and his desire for them to build a retractable roof for Fenway Park. Poor Ted, all these years later, still no retractable roof...
Agreed. Don't remember anything resembling the Jim O'Brien-then-Al Skinner lovefest on the BC football side of things. And this would have been concurrent with a pretty good decade of BC football (post-Henning, pre-Spaziani).

As for the roof, he was a big proponent of something called a megaplex in South Boston, on the site of the since-erected Convention Center; a building that the legislature passed a bill authorizing its construction (but forgot to add any funding whatsoever to said bill).
 

NortheasternPJ

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Exactly, I looked at the evenings as "does this host make me actively want to change the station?" When I used to attend many more Sox games yearly, I just wanted to listen to the WEEI postgame without feeling the need to turn the dial. Ted Sarandis and Mikey Adams definitely tested our mettle nightly, but Mutt was a guy you could "set and forget" and know you weren't going to hear cringeworthy takes.
You mean you don't enjoy Jim Murray and Adam Jones talking about how it wasn't a real win, it was a fake win in post games? Yeah they won, but they should have won by more. The Patriots win doesn't count because Kyler Murray got hurt. Yeah they would have lost and deserved to if Hopkins didn't fumble!

I dont know why any fan listens to that type of crap, especially after a win