Coming October 2022: "The Last Folk Hero: The Life and Myth of Bo Jackson"

Covering the World Series

scott-tempyWhenever I watch the World Series on TV, I’m reminded of my days covering the World Series for Sports Illustrated.

Which I truly, truly, truly hated.

Oh, I love baseball, and I loved attending baseball games. Tight one-run, epics. Walk-off homers. Tense situations. I loved sitting in the Fenway press box; loved walking through Wrigley; loved the groove of a Padre game, the pulse of a Yankee game, the … the … well, the nothing of a Marlins game. But you get the overall idea.

The World Series, however, was always a writer’s nightmare. Although I embraced the games, my passion was storytelling. And, surrounded by 500 other media members, storytelling during the World Series is a beast. If you get five solo minutes with a player, that’s a gift from God. More often than not, you’re speaking in clusters—clusters of reporters surrounding David Ortiz, clusters of reporters surrounding John Lackey. Clusters here, clusters there. The clubhouses are so insanely packed with reporters that most players avoid at all costs. The press boxes are over-stuffed, therefore causing stadiums to run auxiliary press boxes that are, usually, situated in the outer banks of Neverland. Cliches fly left and right and right and left, because no player wants to risk saying anything even remotely inflammatory. So not only are you rarely receiving one-on-one time, but even if you do, well, it’s worthless.

Give me Cubs-Brewers on July 8, and I’m happy.

Give me the World Series, I’m counting the hours until season’s end.