The baseball season started on April 2. The O’s home season began on April 9. The weekend leading into the home opener, all of the Baltimore sports media waited for the ballclub to distribute press credentials for 2007. It was clearly a case of “bumbling and stumbling” as the club didn’t even send out press credential request lists to some media entities until Friday, April 6. Finally, by the weekend, three separate media “companies” were left out to dry by the Orioles in terms of season media credentials. They were…WBAL Radio, which last year had 19 full-season credentials – reduced to 3 this season (they were no longer the play-by-play broadcast station and, thus, they were now nearly fully expendable by the club, despite their 50,000 watt signal and their long-standing support of the club). Comcast SportsNet (another “former” broadcast partner who could now be kicked to the curb since they no longer air the games live) was given ZERO full-season credentials by the Orioles PR staff for 2007. And, of course, there’s little WNST, which went from having probably somewhere around 7 or 8 full credentials last season (some of the people who had them in ’06 are no longer with the station) to being given 3 this year.
Well, I’m pleased to report tonight that Comcast SportsNet’s Brent Harris has received a full-season credential and he was sporting it this evening in the pressbox. I saw it with my own two eyes…I was on hand to watch the O’s and Nationals and we sat together for a while and shot the breeze while the rain poured down in front of us.
When Brent sat down next to me, I couldn’t help but see the credential. I laughed and said, “Are you serious?” and he pointed at it and said, “I’m dead serious.”
Yes sir…Brent Harris has a season media credential and it gained him full access tonight at Camden Yards.
It was issued by the Washington Nationals.
How freakin’ funny is that? Here’s a guy who covers the Orioles on a DAILY basis. Brent has been at the ballpark every time I’ve been there this season (tonight was my 11th game of the year in case Greg Bader is keeping track of my attendance) and there’s no doubt he covers the team as much as ANYONE in the marketplace when they’re home.
And yet, the baseball team IN BALTIMORE still won’t give him a season media credential. Like me, Brent gets the “daily” credential – which, I assume, is intended to be a gentle reminder that the team – as it reads on the back of the pass – “has the right to revoke these media access privileges at any time.”
So Brent Harris – who covers the BALTIMORE Orioles on a daily basis - finally received his season media credential, but he had to go all the way down to Washington D.C. to get it.
Still, he looked awfully proud tonight.
Parking? Well, don’t go there. Brent and I still have to take a cab over from the football stadium. At least we’re parking in the same zip code as the baseball stadium though. What more could we ask for, right?