Murray Chass puts world on notice: Talk to me or be mocked in my columns

July 28th, 2006 → 12:23 pm @ // No Comments

If we’re really lucky, we’ll get several more first-person pieces before the season’s over in which Chass complains about his lack of access.

From the Talk of the Town to Hardly Talking
The New York Times
April 12, 2006
By Murray Chass

This is about the day that George Steinbrenner almost talked to me.

George always used to talk to me. … [W]e talked more often than not, then he disappeared…

I called [Steinbrenner spokesman Howard] Rubenstein yesterday morning and told him I would like to talk to George at Yankee Stadium before or during the Yankees’ home opener with Kansas City…

I said there would be reporters there who hadn’t even been born at the time Steinbrenner saw his first home opener as the Yankees’ principal owner. Indeed, four of the Yankees’ nine beat reporters had not made their appearance in the world.

”I’ll ask him when I get to the Stadium,” Rubenstein replied.

Early in the game Rubenstein called and said: ”George will talk to you on the telephone. Is that O.K.?”

Not really. With Steinbrenner in his loge-level office and me in the loge-level press box, we were no farther apart than home plate from first base. But with my editors waiting for a ”George talks” column, I couldn’t very well turn down a telephone interview, so I said yes…

”He decided he’s not going to do it today,” Rubenstein said. ”He’s entertaining up here. Maybe he’ll do it tomorrow.”

I will not sit by the telephone waiting for the call.

Wilpon Joins Steinbrenner’s Vow of Silence
The New York Times
July 28, 2006 Friday
By Murray Chass

Now New York has two owners of baseball teams who are incommunicado. We know what George Steinbrenner’s reason is. He’s aging and ailing, and his ego is too large to let his public see him as less than the man he was for his first 30 years or so as owner of the Yankees.

On the day the Yankees opened at home this season, I was in the press box at Yankee Stadium and told Howard Rubenstein, the owner’s spokesman, that I would like to speak with Steinbrenner, who was in his office not 100 feet away.

”George will talk to you on the telephone. Is that O.K.?” Rubenstein responded after relaying the request.

Three and a half months later, I am still waiting for the phone call.

Post Categories: Murray Chass & New York Times

One Comment → “Murray Chass puts world on notice: Talk to me or be mocked in my columns”

  1. […] The last time Murray Chass lost all touch with reality, there were those who contacted one of the Times’s sports editors, essentially asking “What the hell is up with this freak?” (I wasn’t one of those people.) The editors responded — wearily, it must be said — with half-hearted defenses, and it wasn’t hard to sense a feeling of frustrated resignation. A job at the Times is basically the same as getting tenure. Which means we — and they — are stuck with the guy. (His articles almost never appear on the first page of Sports — according to a Nexis search, only five of the 73 pieces he’s written since the beginning of the baseball season have been on the section front.) So let’s make it fun! […]


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