Required Reading: U-L series on Sox farm system

March 30th, 2008 → 11:15 am @ // No Comments

Lord knows Boston sports fans have plenty of options when it comes to reading about Ye Olde Towne Team — I’d bet there’s more available information floating out there than about any other professional team in history. Much of the time, this means there’s a lot of redundant stories out there: the same Sox notes columns with the same quotes and the same observations.

A lot of the reason for that is systemic: if you’re covering the Sox beat and your game story is missing a quote that’s in every single competitor’s piece your editor is gonna be on your ass. It takes a lot of work, and a lot of smarts, to put together something that’s interesting, comprehensive, and new. That’s what makes Alex Speier’s new series in the New Hampshire Union-Leader so impressive (and enjoyable). It’s about a topic that’s near and dear to my heart: the Sox player development system, the way the team has emphasized building–and keeping–young talent even when it means dealing with the wrath and scorn of the instant-gratification hoi polloi.

Today’s piece is the first in a six-part series. Those words–“first in a series”–usually serve as a cure to the most stubborn insomnia. Not this time. Do yourself a favor and skip the stories about Colon pitching the PawSox season opener and savor this instead. You’ll be glad you did.
(As an aside, Speier’s work also shows why the current evisceration of the country’s press corps so upsetting. Are there a lot of redundancies? Yes. But redundancies are necessary to make sure everything out there gets covered. Take the WMD controversy – it wasn’t the Times, or the Washington Post, that did the most important work when this story was in its early stages; it was Knight-Ridder’s Washington Bureau. A bureau that, along with Knight-Ridder itself, no longer exists.)

Post Categories: 2008 Season & Alex Speier & Sports Reporters

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