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Media Bias With Jose Reyes and Drew Brees

By Mike Silva ~ December 29th, 2011. Filed under: Sports Media Commentary.

I was looking to see the media reaction this week after the Saints Drew Brees was allowed to stay in Monday Night’s blowout over Atlanta and attempt to break Dan Marino’s single season passing record. What I found was that it was a stark contrast to what went on when Jose Reyes elected to sit out and preserve his average in the batting title race.

Why the diverse media reaction? Check out my thoughts over at Sports Media Watchdog.

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Mike Silva has hosted sports shows on 107.1 FM Champions ESPN Radio Long Island ,1240 AM WGBB , Blog Talk Radio and live from Mickey Mantle’s Restaurant. He’s also built and maintained two popular social media hubs: New York Baseball Digest and Sports Media Watchdog. Mike has broken national and local stories, as well as been mentioned on the YES Network, SNY.tv, WFAN, Sports Illustrated, ESPN, NY Daily News, New York Magazine, Journal News and the NY Post. Contact Mike professionally at mikesilvamedia.com

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14 Responses to Media Bias With Jose Reyes and Drew Brees

  1. Ralph C

    I don’t see how Brady will set the record because Brees should be playing on Sunday with a potential first round bye at stake. The Saints clinch the two seed with a win over Carolina and a San Francisco loss to Saint Louis. It’s unlikely the Niners will lose that game but if they do, I think the Saints would like the bye.

  2. Stu B

    What Brees did is nothing new. I remember that on 11/28, with the Saints leading the Giants by about 25 points in the third quarter, he passed on first, second, and third downs. I wondered why they weren’t running the ball on almost every play in that situation.

  3. Edgy DC

    You come up with a few different theories pertaining to this alleged difference. But you don’t draw the huge distinction that pursuing a personal accomplishment by continuing to play for your team and fans and pursing a personal accomplishment by quitting and abandoning your team and fans are enormously different things.

  4. Edgy DC

    That’s *pursuing.*

  5. Stu B

    Once again Mike, can you set up the ability for us to go back and edit our comments?

  6. Edgy DC

    I have little time to concern myself with what football players do, but if anything, a fairer baseball analogy would be Ken Griffey in pursuit of 60 homers in 1996 and 1997, asking to bat leadoff instead of his more customary third, hoping to squeeze an extra at-bat out of the game. Griffey’s choice is little remembered and (if I recall) wasn’t particularly criticized.

  7. Brien Jackson

    “You come up with a few different theories pertaining to this alleged difference. But you don’t draw the huge distinction that pursuing a personal accomplishment by continuing to play for your team and fans and pursing a personal accomplishment by quitting and abandoning your team and fans are enormously different things.”

    Yeah, I think that’s the important distinction here.

    I’m struggling to come up with a good analogy for baseball, but perhaps leaving a pitcher in past a normal pitch count in a game in order for him to try to finish a perfect game/no-hitter? Say Edwin Jackson throwing 149 pitches to get his no-no? That seems about as analogous as you can get, I think, and I don’t really remember anyone saying it was unsporting of Jackson to stay in the game.

  8. Nu

    from what i heard on espn. brees wanted to break the record on monday night football…larger audience, better chance to hype up new orleans

  9. Mike Silva


    I am going to look into this upgrade over the weekend and hopefully have something in place. Happy New Year!

  10. Mike Silva


    I agree 100% – different scenario and such, but I am not sure that played into the media reaction. Selfish is selfish, regardless of the process of how you got to that outcome.

    I think Tebow, Vick, Reyes are always going to be treated differently than Brees, Manning (both), Brady etc.

    In the case of Vick, it could be personal (I have issues with what he did), but in others its how they look, what they believe in, etc.

    I think that was more the point I was aiming for… but it was also meant to generate discussion.

  11. Brien Jackson

    I really don’t have any idea what Tebow has to do with anything, but okay. Though I do agree that his religiosity is central to why he’s relevant: without it he’d be the second coming of Vince Young and no one would care.

    Still, I think it’s the taking yourself out of the game that makes a difference. A baseball average is not like passing yards, in so much as you don’t often lose the latter. Taking yourself out of a game in order to avoid the chance to fail and thus lower your batting average is a much different act than calling a passing play over a running play to help your QB get a counting stat record in Week 16 instead of Week 17. I do think leaving a pitcher in to chase a no-hitter is about the best we can approximate to the Brees matter, and that would be seen as perfectly normal.

  12. Edgy DC

    “Selfish is selfish, regardless of the process of how you got to that outcome.”

    Winning a batting title on your ass and winning a passing title with your arm are about as different as can be. As different as attacking and retreating.

    A guy chasing a stolen-base title running every chance he gets. That’s maybe analogous.

    Reyes showed a failure of character there. He sought to secure a personal achievement by NOT playing. That, despite it being his last time in a Mets uniform in front of Mets fans that had nurtured and supported him through his career, through thick and thin.

    The batting title made him more valuable on the market and he knew it. And that’s where his loyalty was that day. Manager Terry Collins made it clear that he was disappointed Reyes asked out and didn’t want to do it but acceded to his request somehow to reinforce the relationship he and his players had built up through the season.

    That’s nice, but I don’t buy it. He did it because rolling over for Reyes kept whatever sliver of hope alive that the team might be able to re-sign him.

    I love Reyes and I like him. But I was very disappointed in him there. I would have been just as disappointed had it been David Wright. He quite simply abandoned his team and his fans, and now it’s his very last act in a Mets uniform.

    Racial disparities are always worth looking for in sports coverage, particularly whenever you see the word “scrappy.” Watch out for the success of men of color being ascribed to physical virtues while the success of white men are credited to moral ones. But I’m not a sports journalist and I don’t think that’s what I’m doing here. A man pulls out of game to protect a batting percentage — be he José Reyes or Wade Boggs (look it up) — I don’t like it.

    For some people in that audience, it was their first game. For some, it was their last game. And that was the (frankly crappy) treatment they got. To Reyes, the game meant nothing and the needs of his teammates and fans meant nothing

    Win your baubles in the field of honor or don’t win them at all.

  13. Mike Silva

    Edgy you make great points – no doubt.

    One devil’s advocate that I have been meaning to throw out there (and I don’t have the answer so I am not being accusatory)

    Would you (and other Mets fans) feel the same about Reyes if he re-signed with the Mets instead of going to Miami

    Just a thought…

  14. Edgy DC

    Well, my feelings on the issue were explicitly expressed well before his ultimate destination was made clear. I certainly disliked the choice, and I certainly think it was made worse by it being his last act as a Met, but I nonetheless rooted for the Mets to re-sign him.

    As I said, I certainly love and like him. I like to think it was a chink in the armor and not the whole of his character on display there. I think what’s great about Reyes is the B-side of what’s been frustrating about him. The child-like exuberance he brings to the field sometimes comes with a child-ish tendency toward self-centeredness.

    Good: He played with joyous abandon and delighted in his actions with a smile that said “Wow! Look at what I just did!”

    Bad: Two consecutive managers (Randolph and Manuel) had confrontations with him over not having his head in the game and hustling during the dog days.

    Good: He was so frustrated with his inability to get back on the field during his early years, reports came back from Port St. Lucie of him crying in disappointment during rehab, leading Mike Cameron to suggest that Reyes rejoin the team and do his rehab in Flushing for a while, to remind him that he’s a big-leaguer.

    Bad: He was narcissistic enough to take his pants off for money.

    Good: When one of his teammates hit a game ending hit, he was always the first to greet him afterwards, always taking the greatest joy in his team’s success and his teammates’ success,

    Bad: He won a batting title by running away and hiding on the bench at the end, after playing the majority of the second half frankly at three-quarters’ speed to protect his health going in to free agency (which is absolutely understandable, but disappointing and dis-spiriting nonetheless). Then he lied either to himself or the media that he was doing it for the fans and doing it for his home country, when in fact he was doing it for himself.

    Raising children can be like that. You are delighted and disappointed by character traits that are deeply linked, and hope they find ways to keep the outward-directed best parts of themselves alive as they temper the more destructive and self-centered parts.

    But he’s no longer a child, and the slack that you give someone as he grows can be progressively more difficult to muster.

    I’m sorry he’s a Marlin. I’m most sorry for the generation of child Met fans who never knew it could be thus. But I’m not going to let my disappointment that he’s gone and my frustrations with the Mets’ financial situation to cause me to lionize one party and demonize another. The world’s more complicated than that. What he did kinda stunk. I still wish he was a Met.

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