Rainy, Foggy, Salty Night at Fenway

First of all, if you haven’t seen Ken Fang’s post on the April ratings numbers – definitely check it out-

Crown 98.5 The Sports Hub, The Sports Radio King of Boston

I haven’t verified these numbers personally, but if true, they’re mindroasting.

On another note, congratulations to Rob Bradford and company as WEEI.com took home the major market radio station web site of the year award in last night’s Radio Ink Digital Awards. This was for all radio stations, not just sports, and WEEI.com beat out a Washington D.C. all-news station and a Philadelphia hip-hop station for the award.

The Red Sox and Tigers battled the elements and each other last night, with the Red Sox coming away with a 1-0 win amidst the soaking rain and fog. Jarrod Saltalamacchia broke the scoreless tie with a two-out double off the wall in the eighth, which scored Carl Crawford from first base.

Clay Buchholz gives Red Sox staff a boost – Mike Fine has the starter giving the Red Sox seven shutout innings (career high 127 pitches) but ending up with a no-decision.

Sox count on Big Three for now – Gordon Edes says that the Red Sox will be leaning on their own big three of Lester, Beckett and Buchholz to anchor their rotation.

Jarrod Saltalamacchia’s coming around – John Tomase says don’t look now, but thecatcherwiththelongname has been playing very well as of late. Maureen Mullen has “Salty” coming up with the big hit last night.

Sox were in catch-22 with Martinez – Brian MacPherson looks at the tough situation the Red Sox were in with Victor Martinez. John Tomase says that they made the right call in letting him go.

Matsuzaka may miss a month – Michael Vega’s notebook has tests coming back worse than expected for the Japanese righty. The Herald notebook from Michael Silverman says that no surgery is planned for Matsuzaka. The Red Sox Journal says that it might be a long time before we see Matsuzaka again. The CSNNE notes look at a long night for Buchholz. The Patriot Ledger notebook from Mike Fine looks at the Martinez reunion.

The Red Sox still have another game with the Tigers tonight, but Dan Shaughnessy has already broken out his Chicago/Boston breakdown for the Cubs series, calling the franchises “Twins.” Pass.

Tuning In: Tyler Seguin’s sudden stardom awes Bruins radio analyst Bob Beers – Bill Doyle’s Thursday media column has a chat with Beers about the emergence of Seguin. Joe Haggerty says that the rookie has found chemistry with Michael Ryder.

B’s prepare to shuffle lineup – With Patrice Bergeron possibly returning tonight, Joe McDonald says that the Bruins have some lineup changes to make. Mick Colageo says that it will be a tough choice for Claude Julien.

Bruins finally find life on the power play – Haggerty’s notes have the Bruins finally making progress on their power play. The Herald notebook from Steve Conroy has Bergeron making the trip to Tampa with the team. The Globe notebook from Fluto Shinzawa has Seguin finding his place on the team.

Retooling won’t be an easy fix – Julian Benbow says that the Celtics will have some very tough decisions to make this offseason.

  • Alan

    The one thing I don't get about ratings is you look at the 6+ ratings, and WEEI beats TSH 4.0 to 3.4. But looking at the age breakdown that Ken posts, that would mean that somehow WEEI pulls in enough ratings from 6-17 and 55+ to overtake TSH.

    • APimpNamedDaveR

      Or they pull in a significant number of women, as I believe the 6+ ratings are for both genders.

  • Doc Michaels

    I think most of us knew once Mutt & Merloni settled into the midday slow that it was over for WEEI in that time period — now these numbers confirm it. Not that 98.5 is above criticism, but the programming decisions by WEEI have just been unbelievable as we've stated before. The biggest shock is that it seems to have spilled over to the station's other programming too.

    Now that The Big Show has brought back "the third man in" from 3-5, you wonder what other changes are coming. IMO they ought to put Dale back at 10 with a new co-host, that would help the bleeding in the midday, that decline from Dale & Holley to Mutt & Merloni is as bad (if not worse) than we thought.

    • latetodinner

      I have said it before but it bears repeating. The Mutt and Merloni show is forgettable radio…they add nothing to the conversation. The Big Show with Glen Ordway not in the role of fence sitter is just unlistenable. Glen as the Hockey guy…no credibility. Glen and Holley as hockey guys even worse. Glen and Holley with Kevin Paul Dupont defending Claude Julien's decision on Tyler Seguin last Tuesday….so miserable I listened to Felger and Mazz just because they sounded reasonable…THAT SHOULD NEVER HAPPEN!

      I think it is too late to bring Dale back…he is probably laughing anyway…why would he want to save the ship. At this point I think they have to look at another market that has a good young team and bring them here while trying to build a new show. I think they have to seriously look at dumping Holley from the afternoon show as he is adding nothing. If they are going to keep Ordway then let him go back to revolving hosts. Maybe get rid of Adams and give Holley the night time slot. He would probably do well there. They have to try something because what they are doing is not working.

      • Classless

        I find it highly ironic the Bruins are the hot fad right now and Dale (the most qualified Hockey guy on WEEI) has been banished. Instead, its 4 hours of painfully vanilla sports talk from Mutt and Merloni. If I have to hear Merloni just name players like he's making a point, I'll punch my radio.

  • APimpNamedDaveR

    Who cares about hockey and the Bruins?

    Apparently radio listeners do….

    • tl;dr

      Good for them.

  • Siggy

    It's all self-inflicted over at WEEI. Anyone could have seen that Felger was a phenomenon waiting to happen once he got a signal and strong backing. They should have canned Ordway when they had the chance and brought in Felger to take over at a third of the price. Ordway is the problem now. He has turned into a modern version of Eddie Andelman – too cagy to outmaneuver, and too expensive to let go.

  • NutCracker

    Eventually Jason Wolf and Julie Kahn have to be held accountable for WEEI's declining market share. They just keep rearranging the chairs on the Titantic. WEEI needs to reboot by going outside and bring in some good, new, refreshing talent if they want to regain their audience that defected to 98.5. I switched over to 98.5 but not because I like listening to Felger et al; because I could no longer take Ordway, Dennis and Callahan and that cast of Rush Limbaugh wanna-bees. At least The Sports Hub hosts don't force their political beliefs onto me and I appreciate that.

    • mandb97

      It really amazes me how bad WEEI has become. It is not as though the programming on 98.5 is great. In fact, it is still pretty dreadful. But guess what, I wind up listening to WBZ more because dreadful is just an ounce better than completely unlistenable, which EEI has become.

    • Moon

      I couldn't agree more. The arrogance of Wolf/Kahn has WEEI where it is today. It permeates throughout. I'm sure they will come up with some spin about how well they are doing.

      I'm 100% T&R now. They are funny, entertaining and at times HUMBLE. I lean to the right and even I'm turned off by Callahan's rants. It would be nice if he (and any other political broadcaster) would at times say something nice about the other party and criticize their own. I can hear Callahan calling me a RINO for this blasphemous statement.

      I know everyone wants young or new blood but I’d listen to a Bob Ryan/Neumeier midday show every day. The Big show lost its way years ago. I like Felger but he has to be careful. He seems to be lacking in humility lately and is starting to get annoying. I can't take the endless rants about how right he is. Night time isn't a fair play. DA is light years ahead of Planet Mickey (Freudian slip)

  • Jack

    These number don't seem to mathematically make sense. They show 98,5 winning by huge margins in individual areas, but losing overall. I guess every woman and all males under 18 and over 55 must be listening to "EEI. Sounds a little funny. I don't remember this "Fang" guy having this breakdown before. Where did he get it this time?

    I'm not at all surprised to see the Meathead and Merloni show getting killed. That was just a bad idea from the start.. Think Dale and Merloni might work. Mutt just has no credibility. I don't think a new YOUNG team is the answer. Felger and Mazz aren't young, they're just different from 'EEI. These young guys like Mutt, Minihane, Perrault, etc. just haven't seen enough. Why should I value their opinions? I know that I've stopped listening to WEEI by about 50%. I turn it off at 10 and usually come back at 2. However if the third man in is a hockey guy, as it's been a couple times this week, I switch to music. I have a feeling that a lot of people are similar.

    • Eddie

      I wondered the same thing about those numbers. This is the first time I've ever seen a breakdown like that. Usually you see something by Chad Finn or Jessica Heslam but it doesn't go into that much detail. Where is Mr. Fang getting his data? If he's had this info all along, why are we just now hearing it for the first time?

      A month ago WEEI was leading and now they're not just behind but, according to these numbers, they're getting massacred. I can see that happening mid-day, but not in the AM, where nothing has changed or in afternoon drive where I think Holley hasn't added much, but he's also eliminated the likes of LJ, Butch, Smerlas, et al. So I think that's at least a wash.

      • Jim Ed

        Here is the link to something Jessica Heslam posted today about it… Also, , he had the links to the sources where he got the material. He's not the original source… He's just linking to a message board that recently posted the material.
        http://www.bostonherald.com/blogs/news/mediaBiz/?…

    • DryHeave

      you shouldn't "value the opinions" of any of these media bozos to begin with. Forget about "having seen enough"…..do you really think any of them are "experts?? " they do the same thing the rest of us do. They sit on their butts and watch the games…..(and that more or less goes for ex-athletes too because once they go into the media they must become ENTERTAINERS or risk getting canned. Remember, these guys are ENTERTAINERS not "sports experts" All sports talk radio is useless drivel, a complete waste of your time. Stick with music radio.

  • Winning

    I think the numbers decline for WEEI is due to the fact that John Dennis has eaten 15% of them between 18-34, 25% between 25-48, and 22% between 25-55.

  • mandb97

    A couple of quick ones:

    1) We should not be surprised by the resignation of Dick Ebersol. Remember Ebersol hammered Conan O'Brien for blaming Jay Leno on his low ratings when he took over "The Tonight Show". This set up Ebersol to be scrutinized by someone else. Deadspin wound up firing the shots Ebersol's way. For a little more than a decade Ebersol has made one horrible decision after another. Here is the article on Ebersol's failures.
    http://blog.deadspin.com/5803550/deadspin-classic

    2) It has been no secret of my dislike for Andy Gresh on the radio, but he absolutely destroyed John Dennis this afternoon when he said Dennis looked like a "tick that was about to burst". Gresh did not actually name Dennis, but you had a good idea through context of who he was talking about.

    • NutCracker

      Not that I disagree with Gresh's assessment but people who live in glass houses shouldn't be throwing stones. If Gresh had an apple in ….. ah, never mind.

      • mandb97

        You should have continued your thought. I think it was going to be a beauty. And you're right about Gresh, but I had give credit where credit was due. The line completely caught me off guard.

  • Big Fat O

    Not that 98.5 isn't doing well but the Bruins are helping out quite a bit. Listening to EEI this afternoon and Glen and Erkule are taking about the Red Sox who have played 40/162 games and the Bruins are playing Game 3 in the ECFs. Meanwhile Felger and Felger Jr are talking Bruins for all 4 hours and Felger has smoe credibility with hockey.

    No one should be surprised that Fat Albert and Callahole are losing ground. They talk sports when the teams lose so they can dump on them and then everything else when they win. B;s have a big win the other night and their talking about Obama.

    Canning Fat Dino and keeping Dale would have been a good move.

  • Col.Forbin

    The PPM ratings system is a joke. The high bump for T&R on The Hub could be due solely to someone with a people meter changing their routine by going into a dunkin donuts each morning that has The Sports Hub on in the background. It's a complete farce. (not taking sides with either WEEI or The Sports Hub).

    • Rational

      Toucher & Rich have been hovering near a 20 share Men 18-34 for about 5 months now, so it's no fluke.

    • Hoss

      Don't like the new technologies, do you Mr. Wolfe?

  • Ann

    I barely tune into EEI any more. However you feel about Dale Arnold, he's missed in the middle of this playoff run.

  • JDS

    Mutt and Merloni is college level radio at its finest. What WEEI really needs is a management change.