Was it a purge or a mass defection? Did NBC hire the budget consultants from The Weather Channel? The Italian Flu?
Whatever it was, the editorial staff of the site formerly known as Circling the Bases has been razed down to senior editor Craig Calcatierra (so renamed because he continues to insist that the site is his turf) and to the redoubtable Bill Baer. Gone are Drew Silva and Matthew Pouillot (or however you spell it – this is blogging, not journalism, you know?). Here are Craig and Bill, leaving the epic meeting at NBC headquarters after learning that their staff had been downsized:
Apparently, the suits and pencilnecks at NBC, not content with having imposed on their readers a vomit of slow-downloading ad content, links to irrelevant subjects like backandforthandbackandforthandbackandfrothball or backandforthandbackandforthandbackandforthpuck, thumbnails that send you jerking all over the homepage when you click on them or comment links that send you to the wrong threads, have now decided to excise several of the site’s best writers (or did they quit in disgust? More research needs to be done!) and replace them with AP feeds like today’s thread about another cockamamie second base slide rule call against Houston last night.
Circling the Bases celebrated its seventh birthday this past week, whereupon Craigster offered up a paen to NBC’s editorial non-interference policy (in which category discontinuing his staff would not, precisely, apply). Craig forebore to mention that “Hardball Talk” was a corporate standardization move meant to strip the uniqueness away from his blog and line it up with all the other androidal names of the blogs on the NBC sports site, a move that got shoved down his throat no less sans recourse than the recent desecration of the site design.
Ah well. At least you have to figure that Bill Baer must now feel more secure in his own employment: