Sportscaster Scott Garceau questions Baltimore "sports community"

Radio show wonders if we are in same league with fans, teams in cities like Boston

July 13, 2011|By David Zurawik | The Baltimore Sun

I have a story in today's Sun about the shrinking role for sports anchors and information in late TV newscasts in Baltimore. You can read it here.

One of the peoeple interviewed in the story is Scott Garceau, longtime anchor at WMAR-TV, who who was let go when the station cut its sports department three years ago. Garceau has successfully transitioned to afternoon drivetime host on WJZ-FM (105.7 TheFan). You can hear him there from 3 to 6 p.m. weekdays.

We had planned to end the piece in today's paper on what I thought was one of the most intriguing and provocative quotes in the story. But because of space and the way the story was structured, we wound up not using it.

We wanted to make sure it had some context, and didn't seem like Garceau was saying sports fans here are less dedicated than those in Boston and New York -- though, I have to admit, there is some calling out being done here, as far as I am concerned.

Garceau did definitely raise the idea that maybe Baltimore sports fans are getting less TV sports news at 11 p.m., because they are less demanding than our counterparts in the cities with the baseball teams that always beat us. That and the fact that the Orioles have driven fans away with their hapless play.

Anyway, here is the quote with the paragraph of context I had tried to give it at the end of today's story in the Sun. How do you read it? What do you think about what Garceau has to say?

If any sportscaster in Baltimore has the longevity and credibility to make such a statement, it is Garceau.

Garceau, who now says he “wouldn’t want to go back there” to TV sports, wonders if maybe the cutback in late sports in Baltimore TV also says something about the "sports community" here.

“With Channel 2 kind of out of the sports biz, and you say other people are cutting back, maybe this says a little bit about our sports community, too, that we’re not a sports town like some other places,” Garceau says.

“I’m not sure in Boston if they could do this with what the Celtics and Bruins and the Red Sox and the Patriots mean to people up there. We’ve almost been reduced to a one sports town. I still think it’s a good baseball town, but the Orioles haven't given us anything in 14 years and maybe that allows the stations to say, ‘Hey, we’re not going to do sports at 11 o’clock.’”

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