All Red Sox Games Back on WEEI

In possibly yet another sign that they view 98.5 The SportsHub as a real competitor in the Boston sports talk radio arena, Entercom Boston/WEEI announced the following today:

Entercom New England announced today that, effective with the team’s game against the Chicago White Sox Wednesday evening, August 26th, all future Boston Red Sox games will be carried on WEEI 850 AM in Boston, the flagship station of the WEEI Sports Radio Network.

From 1995 to 2006, Red Sox games were carried exclusively on WEEI. In 2006, the games were shifted to Entercom sister station WRKO AM 680.

“We have a tremendously close partnership with the Red Sox, and are very excited to bring them back to WEEI,” said Jason Wolfe, Entercom New England’s Vice President of AM Programming. “This move will add consistency to our lineup, whereby all of our sports assets will be consolidated in the same place. There’s no better compliment to the Boston Celtics, Patriots Monday and Patriots Friday, Sunday Night and Monday Night NFL football, the Super Bowl and NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament, than adding Red Sox baseball back to nation’s biggest sports radio station.”

Added Julie Kahn, Entercom New England Market Manager/VP: “We’re delighted to bring the Red Sox back to their original home on WEEI. The Red Sox and WEEI have a long history together and it’s a partnership that’s a win for all – WEEI, the Sox and the Boston sports fans.”

“Our partnership with Entercom ensures that Red Sox fans know where to go for the best, most compelling sports news and features on radio,” said Red Sox President and CEO Larry Lucchino. “Today’s announcement marks a return home for us, and now all of Red Sox Nation will know they can turn to WEEI to catch every Red Sox game all season long.”

Bringing the Red Sox back to WEEI makes sense for the station, especially now with a potentially viable* competitor on the airwaves. Mike Adams now doesn’t have to worry about going up against The D.A. Show on 98.5 on nights the Red Sox are playing. More important, it allows WEEI to state that they are the flagship station of the Red Sox and Celtics, while 98.5 has the Patriots and Bruins.

*But of course, as long as 98.5 employs Gary Tanguay as a full time host, they can’t be considered a true alternative to WEEI.

  • http://twitter.com/bruceallen/statuses/3540879274 bruceallen (Bruce Allen)

    Twitter Comment


    All Red Sox games back on WEEI: [link to post]

    Posted using Chat Catcher

    • http://twitter.com/MurbsSox/statuses/3542230010 MurbsSox (Murbs’ Sox)

      Twitter Comment


      @bruceallen Haven’t listened to EEI other than D&H. I’m just waiting for next ratings book. EEI continues to buckle. Move to RKO was stupid.

      Posted using Chat Catcher

      • Boston Dan

        I have XM in the car and am done with WEEI completely, even when 98.5, Fox Sports Radio (during the day) are on commercial and I can’t find a single good song on the music channels. And prior to the last few months I had been a daily WEEI listener for at least ten years. Not even the whiner line is enough to bring me back anymore.

        • yuppiescum

          The whiner line has been pretty abysmal over the past year of so. Why they continue to allow the “man on the way up”, the guy who plays shitty acoustic guitar, and others spew completely unfunny, uninteresting and unnecessary crap during the competitive drive time slot is beyond me. I’ll listen to felger or howie carr in a pinch.

        • http://www.jonvssports.blogspot.com Jon

          The Whiner Line has been awful for a while. Everyone hates the Man on the Way Up, but he’s on every day. Why?

        • yuppiescum

          The “Morgan Freeman” bit is the only regular approaching comedy but that could certainly be worn out.

  • Guntfather of Sports Radio

    I’m really trying with Tanguay. But I think dead silence or listening to Eddie’s flem reel from last Sunday night. Toucher and Rich do a great job of ripping him apart so that’s nice.

  • Guntfather of Sports Radio

    I’m really trying with Tanguay. But I think dead silence or listening to Eddie’s flem reel from last Sunday night are better alternatives. Toucher and Rich do a great job of ripping him apart so that’s nice.

  • Panic much

    Wow. Should never have moved in the 1st place. Forward thinking switching back with 40 games left in the season. Meanwhile, Burton and Stearns on the airwaves. Keep up the great work Jason

    • Bullock

      Burton and Stearns are like walking radio advertisements for my Pandora stations.

      • Paul

        Pandora stations?

        Stations that contain all the bad things in the world that a curious girl listens to one day and lets them loose upon the world but turns off the radio in time to keep Hope on the radio?

        I’m confused.

        • Jason Coyote

          Paul, pandora.com is a site a friend recently introduced me to. You can program your own radio stations by listing an artist you like and them finding other artists or songs that sound similar.

  • Siggy

    Just this hour: Felger and Mazz have engaged in a reasoned, informative breakdown and analysis with cap numbers of a potential Brady deal in light of recent big QB deals, along with a good Brady sound clip on the subject.

    Big O sounds tired. He’s debating Stearns and Burton (!) on the Papelbon/Wagner flap of two days ago. A fat joke here, and a put down there…not good today.

  • Rick Mc

    “We shortened commercial breaks, allowed Globe staff back on air, snapped up Futility Lou, and brought the Red Sox back to Weei, but we are not, I repeat, not concerned about the Sports Hub.”

    RKO was a joke from the beginning. Terrible signal in the spring and fall.

  • Hieronymous

    Competition works.

  • Mike

    Any idea on the length of the Hub initial deals, Bruce?

  • Jason Coyote

    Interesting news. No question EEI perceives SportsHub as a legit threat, whether they say it or not (not that they ever would say it publically).

    I’d be curious what EEI’s strength on the 850 frequency is compared to the 680 RKO signal (wasn’t 680 stronger, one of the reasons for moving the Sox games there in the first place?). With EEI now having an entire network covering most areas outside of Eastern MA, I wonder if they would consider swapping signals and moving to 680 so they could have a stronger signal in the metrowest and north shore areas. Then they could place the all-talk format of RKO (which is a dying station with the possible exception of Howie Carr) on the weaker 850 signal.

    • raccoonradio

      I’d go for that. I work in N. Reading and the 680 sticks are in Burlington (those four antennae you see near the Burlington mall). EEI’s stick is in Needham.

      When I worked in Woburn you could see the RKO sticks from our parking lot, that’s how close we were.

  • Steve

    WEEI must have realized Planet Burnout was due to get an ass kicking so they ran for cover.

  • raccoonradio

    Crap. I know, I know we’ll get all of Howie’s show now, etc. and “sports shouldn’t be on a talk station” but where I work, and I work nights, WRKO comes in half decently. WEEI, maybe barely and in many places, not at all.

    It does make sense in some ways to put the sports all on one station (oh really? what if Celts and Sox play at same time? I guess they’d bounce Celts to RKO) but for me and many others RKO had a better signal.
    Yeah it is nice Howie will be on till 7 pm etc but I’d rather have the Sox than Savage (who did air tape delayed after games)

    And maybe I could try WCRN 830 for the Sox but that prob doesn’t come in too well either. WBOQ 104.9? Yeah if I walk around in a very narrow spot with my Walkman extended up high.

    Crap.

  • Rick Mc

    850 is much stronger in MetroWest. Before Daylight Savings WRKO turns down its power before the Red Sox even start and the signal barely reaches Wellesley.

    Does 830 not have a pregame? When listening to Howie he tells WRKO listeners to switch to 830.

    • raccoonradio

      No they intentionally had WCRN continue to run with Howie till 7 pm; Howie tells people “OK, we’re leaving Boston now so tune to AM 830, WCRN”. He will be in the middle of a discussion about what’s going on in Boston itself and has to tell people if they want to hear the rest they gotta tune to a Worcester station.

  • Lance

    The Patriots games have sounded so much better on FM than AM. Pity can’t get that with the Sox.

  • http://twitter.com/CMFoster23/statuses/3541247960 CMFoster23 (Craig Foster)

    Twitter Comment


    RT @bruceallen: All Red Sox games back on WEEI: [link to post] – another move born out of the new competiton in town.

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • Nopointe

    Hey Mike Adams – better hurry back to the used car lots, with all the dealerships closing and downsizing you’ll have a hard time finding a new job.

  • JayCee

    This is the beginning of the end for Adams. With the Red Sox, the Celtics and college basketball (BC or PC, depending where you live) his air time will be minimal. Why pay a full-time salary when you can just get a part-timer like Ryder or Mutnansky to fill in on those rare occasions when there’s actually a full show?

    On another matter, I wish 98.5 could find a spot for former Providence/ESPN/XM host Chuck Wilson. He’d fill the need for a Sarandis-type “straight talker” without Teddy’s pompous finger-wagging.

    • E

      Agree completely with sentiments. Wonder how much EEI secretly wishes they hadn’t signed that Adams deal. The dude seemingly never works as it is, and he’s a freaking clown.

      Chuck Wilson. Wow. A old time ESPN guy who did quality stuff on ESPN Radio before it became, well…ESPN Radio.

      • Jason Coyote

        Call me crazy, but if 98.5 ever opted to bump Tanguay and pair someone like Chuck Wilson with Zolak, I think you’d see Chuck bring out the best in Zo and you’d create a great team.

        Unfortunately, unless they move someone there’s no room for Wilson except as a weekend fill-in. Speaking of, I’ll be curious to hear who they’ll use for fill-in hosts once they’ve been on the air awhile and guys start taking vacation time.

  • http://masshysteriasports.blogspot.com DaveR

    Good riddance to bad signal.

  • Mitch

    What’s noteworthy is the swiftness with which the station is making these changes. It just goes to show that they recognized their flaws all along, yet did nothing about them due to a zero-competition environment.

    What? A real competitor? Better get rid of those interminable commercial breaks. We can’t screw the advertisers and insult the listeners anymore.

    What? A real competitor? Better let the Globe writers back on the station. They’re infinitely more knowlegeable than most of our regular, on-air talent anyway.

    What? A real competitor? Better move the Sox back to our airwaves. Our night-time guy was completely unlistenable, even in a zero-competition marketplace.

    What? A real competitor? Wish we had had the foresight to sign Massarotti and Felger for the midday, and PM drive slots. Now the top baseball and football analysts in the city are going to take a substantial bite out of our already-eroding market share, while our programming grows more and more stale.

    As posted above: Competition Works.

    • Snuffy Smith

      Yeah but, real competitor or not, they are still trotting out the crappy low level talent for the Big Show. If Stearns and Burton were on today (can’t say I haven’t listened in a while), it’s the same old, same old Ordway giving airtime to his buddies. Why give listeners something interesting when I can be a good ol’buddy to my friends???

      Anyone really think ‘EEI can still be #1?

      Bruce is right. Tanquay is definitely going to hold them back. So many better choices, they can’t justify the move.

      • Jason Coyote

        I agree with everyone’s assessment of Tanguay (don’t know what happened to him in the last year, I don’t recall him being this obnoxiously annoying), but can the co-host of a midday show really hold back the station?

        The two most important shifts in radio are morning and afternoon drive. That is ultimately where 98.5 will or won’t make any meaningful inroads. I can’t listen at work so I’m fortunate enough not to have to hear Tanguay (unless I’m having lunch in the car) and I’m sure most listeners who work are in the same boat.

      • Paul Dickhaut

        I am by no means, fans of Butch Stearns or Steve Burton (though I don’t think Burton is that bad to be honest). In fairness, what co-hosts SHOULD be on the Big Show? Those guys are two of the four sports anchors in town. I’m pretty sure that Tom Curran and Sean McAdam can’t be on every day. Who else do you want? Buckley? Karen Guregian? Shaughnessy? There are only so many sports people in town. That number dwindles when some are either out of town, or on assignment. I’m pretty sure that the scheduling for the Big Show has more to do with who is available on a particular day than anything else. When no one is available, that’s when Larry Johnson is brought in.

        • Snuffy Smith

          Boy, I don’t agree when you say “There are only so many sports people in town.” and maybe that’s part of the problem. They are looking in town and NOT to places like Providence, Lowell, New Bedford, Quincy, etc. The places where people like Bradford, Curran, McAdam, etc started. Look at some to the writer’s Bruce is tracking everyday from outside the city. Maybe if ‘EEI didn’t try to make complete buffoons out of their guests they could attract true talent.

          Maybe it’s time for a new poll, “Who would you enjoy as a cohost?” Here’s my starter list…

          Johnny Pesky, Joe Morgan, Dewey Evans, Steve Grogan, Rico Petrocelli, Neumy and even Lobell. It would be more interesting to hear their experiences than opinions from people who have no insight.

          There are plenty of former players in the area, even some who played against the hometown boys who could offer insights.

          Remember, the shows should be interesting and informal in addition to being bitch sessions for upset fans. ‘EEI has become fat, dumb and lazy. They don’t make the extra effort to bring in quality, but take the easy road with the same tired acts. Dead air would be better than LJ.

  • Steve From Yellowstone

    Thank God. This was an insanely dumb move in the first place, so I’m ecstatic to hear they’re moving it back.

    First, WRKO comes in pretty crappy where I live (which is under 10 miles from downtown Boston btw, how insane is that?) so I’ll be able to hear it a lot better on EEI.

    Second, less Mike Adams.

    Third, did I mention less Mike Adams?

    Bring back Sarandis! :P

  • http://lyflines.blogspot.com Lyford

    So before, if the Red Sox game sucked, I had the option of Mike Adams, which also sucks. Now, I have the option of Michael Savage. I doubt that anyone loathes Mikey Adams as much as I do, but Savage isn’t an improvement.

    This is a situation where the new guys in town represent a significant improvement over the old options.

  • Jason Coyote

    Although I’ve generally like 98.5 since they’ve started, I’m a little disappointed with them today on their reports of the Hochstein trade. Not one update guy or host pronounced his name correctly (Hoke-stine) and this is the flagship station of the Patriots. Even John Rider on EEI got it right.

  • Parsimonious

    Those of us on the North Shore never listened to AM broadcasts of the Sox, they are on 104.9 FM (Beverly). This signal travels well into Boston, and along the Merrimack valley also.

    I’ll say one thing about Tanguay’s latest show…not quite the same as his when he was at the Worcester station. I think he is now in a rut after being squeezed into a certain format on cable, on the Patriots pre-game and even perhaps being told to be the “contrast” to the more staid Zolak.

  • joe

    Isn’t Michael Holley’s contract up? I know he’s been on “vacation” for almost two weeks now. Could he be negotiating with the Sports Hub? Holley and Zolak wouldn’t be bad.

    • Boston Dan

      It would be the best show on the radio in Boston.

      Dale brings Holley down. Dale is bitter, seemingly hates sports and most fans and is yet another know-nothing, know-it-all company man. On top of all that, he’s got an annoying, shrill and grating voice.

  • Mike in Southie

    Tanguay is the definition of an “Empty Suit”. There is no depth to his analysis and ONLY can comment on what he has seen or heard.
    T&R is much better than D&C. Fresh and intelligent, however, not for the unhip or over 50 crowd.
    Zolak is OK, but he would be better with Mazz.
    Felger should do the Big O Thing with except with rotating “A-LIST” co-hosts. No Burt, Stearns or LJ. Felger could have Ryan, McMullan, Jack Edwards, McDonough.
    Holley is the best thing at EEI and should cash in if he jumps or not.

  • Siggy

    EEI at the beginning (Imus, Prensky, Eddie..) certainly bears little resemblance to the EEI of today, so consider these shows and pairings as a work in progress. It will take a few years for chemistry to develop, for other ‘talent’ to become available, etc.

    Toucher and Rich are on an extended audition while the station establishes itself. I can’t see them as a long term solution. I can see a Howie Carr as an WFAN Imus style morning drive host on 98.5 in a couple years.

    Afternoon drive is the marquee slot and I think 98.5 made a good choice going with the Mike & the Mad Dog format with two knowledgable guys. See the comments above for the flaw in the Ordway round table format: the pool of good rotating cohosts is small enough that you end up with Butchie Stearns and Steve Burton too often.

    • sam

      a great way to capture the strong demographic of males under the age of 40 would be to put howie carr on in the mornings. they could pair him up with eddie andelman and ted sarandis. maybe get clark booth to do phone in segments.

      if howie carr won’t do the show then barnicle and his merry band are always available.

    • Rick Mc

      Don’t forget the “Fabulous Sports Babe”!! I still miss her.

      Howie Carr audience is older than dirt. He doesn’t have the pull to get the type of guests and talent that made Imus good.

      • Jason Coyote

        That’s the answer to a little piece of EEI trivia, RMc. D&C first appeared from 10-12, replacing the FSB before they were eventually given the morning drive slot and booting Imus to FM in Boston.

        I believe the original EEI lineup in ’91 was Andy Moes & Friends 6-9, Dale (flying solo) 9-1, Glen & Janet 1-4, EGA 4-7 and Craig Mustard 7-mid.

  • http://www.jonvssports.blogspot.com Jon

    This is a good thing. I can never figure out where the Sox games are and I constantly happen upon Mike Adams or Howie the Hostage by accident… *shudder*

  • http://www.passpatterns.blogspot.com KF

    Gary Tanguay has the best set of pipes of any media person in town. His baritone is a great starting point for a radio host. However, his penchant for manufacturing controversy and panic is what turns me off. He has been doing it ever since he started at New England Sports Tonight. All it takes is a mid week loss by the Sox to the Oakland A’s, and Tanguay’s acting like Chicken Little.

    The Toucher and Rich show sucks. They aren’t long for that morning job. Despite always enjoying Gerry’s GOP rants, I decided to give T&R a shot and found their conversations to be forced.