SBD/April 5, 2012/MLB Season Preview

Sleeping With The Enemy: Red Sox' Valentine To Appear On ESPN Radio 1050 N.Y. Weekly

Sources said WFAN-AM also had interest in Valentine and reached out to his reps
Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine has signed a deal with ESPN Radio 1050 N.Y. to "do a weekly manager’s segment on 'The Michael Kay Show,'" according to Bob Raissman of the N.Y. DAILY NEWS. Not only is the station's move "unprecedented, but it has Kay, the TV voice of the Yankees, squaring off against Valentine, the manager of the hated Red Sox." Valentine yesterday said, "There aren't any Boston fans in New York? I've known Michael for a long time; [I've] known ESPN for a long time. They asked and I agreed." While Raissman notes the move will "not sit well with a segment of Yankees fans who can’t stand the Red Sox and already despise Valentine," ESPN 1050 execs are "hoping these fans will tune into hear this man they love to hate." The move "marks the first time a manager from other than either the Mets or Yankees has signed a contract to make regular appearances" on a local N.Y. sports talk station. Sources said that WFAN-AM "also had interest in Valentine and reached out to his representatives." For ESPN 1050, the "driving forces in bringing the controversial -- and talkative -- Valentine on board are ratings and sponsorships." Not only does the station "not have radio rights to either the Yankees or Mets, it doesn’t have any significant baseball personalities under contract" (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 4/5). In Boston, Steve Buckley writes, "Try to imagine various Red Sox coaches throughout history doing weekly New York radio hits. Not even Red Auerbach, who was born in Brooklyn, would have done it." Valentine "tried to suggest that the show wasn't really a New York show at all." He said, "Actually, it's an ESPN show, I think. And they'll be happy that I turned down the show with 'FAN, which is totally a New York show." However, Buckley writes it is "hilarious for Valentine to think of Michael Kay's radio show as anything other than pure, unfiltered New York sports talk" (BOSTON HERALD, 4/5).
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