Chip's still a babbling fool(tune into any Brave broadcast for proof)! Will the Stone Pony be a regular in a teams booth in 2006?
I listened to Steve Stone's show this afternoon on the Score. They are winding down the shows with Stone. Next week will be his last show. This got me wondering about the future of the best baseball analyst in the business. I did a search on the Stone Pony and stumbled across this interview Maggie Haskins had with Stone back in August, on SI.com.
It's a pretty good interview. Stone lays out the entire "first-guess" scenario that pissed off Dusty during the final week of 2004. Here's how Stone recalls the situation:
Stone: That was a terrible, horrible game and put things over the top for me with No. 12 [Baker's number]. He left Remlinger in to face Adam Dunn and I said before the fact, "I don't think you can leave Remlinger in to face Adam Dunn. Not only is Dunn 5-for-6 lifetime against Remlinger, Remlinger is about 100 points worse against right-handers. Well, Dusty leaves him in and boom there is a base hit.
Now, he brings in Farnsworth. So I say, "Well someone is going to have to go out there and tell Farnsworth that though Adam Dunn has five stolen bases all year, this is when he steals bases." Nobody goes out and talks to Farnsworth. He threw ball one, didn't use a side step and Dunn steals second. I say "now the bright side to this stolen base is you can take Javier Valentin who is a switch hitter, hitting only .119 from the right side and you can put him on first and face Sanderson Machado who hasn't hit the ball out of the infield all day." So the Cubs elect to pitch to Javier Valentin, he doubles off the wall and the Reds win the game. I laid out the inning exactly as it was going to happen before the fact.
After the game I questioned Dusty about the ninth inning and he was quite upset with it. Had I not made my observations during the game I would never have second-guessed him, but I feel if I have already made the statements it is absolutely within bounds. I admit that I don't know the ins and outs of what is going on like a manager does but ...
That shit happened a year ago this week. And just like that--our dumb ass thin-skinned Manager and his ass kissing GM ran the best color commentator off of Cub telecasts. 20+ years calling games on the northside meant nothing.
Anyway, I think it's pretty safe to say the Stone Pony probably won't be working for the Tribsters anytime soon. Not only did the Cubs allow Stone to walk, but they hired Bob Brenly at nearly twice the salary Stone received. Have you listened to Brenly? This was an insult to Stone.
So what does the future hold for the Stone Pony? Read this question from Haskins interview:
Do you ever envision yourself out of the booth? Whether managerial, ownership or GM?He says he signed one year deals with both ESPN and the Score. He than adds "I know what the future holds." Ladies and gents, I have no proof of this, no inside scoop, but I PREDICT Steve Stone will be working on White Sox radio or television broadcasts next season. They have already announced that John Rooney will exit at the end of the season. Ed Farmer will be the radio play-by-play man. This leaves a vacant seat for an analyst. Stone has often said that he considers Chicago his summer home and has no desire to stay in Phoenix in the summer. Add to all of this that Stone is a friend of Jerry Reinsdorf. I'd say the writing is on the wall. The announcement will probably come sometime after the series.
Stone: I chased it for about 10 years and at various times have been closer than at other times, but I don't know. I just know that I love the game of baseball. I am never happier than when I get a chance to go to the ballpark on a daily basis or talk about baseball on a daily basis. I do have a one-year contract with the WSCR in Chicago [where Stone has a weekly show] and one-year contract with ESPN because I wanted to see how it fit with Chicago still in the picture, seeing if I really missed broadcasting for one particular team. It's been really good though and going back to Wrigley is always great. It's been a unique and interesting year and I know what the future holds.
This will be a coup for the Sox and bring life to some pretty boring broadcasts.