I just caught Geoff Baker’s report about Felix Hernandez getting the nod as the Mariners Opening Day starter. Good solid news story, but if that was all you read, you really aren’t able to appreciate how much of a workhorse—and a damn fine all-around reporter—Baker really is.
Here’s what I mean: Check out his blog posts from thoughout the day and compare them to the aforementioned story. He spends all day banging out thousands of words as a blogger and then switches to print journalist mode and consolidates them at the end of the day. Oh, and he finds time to take calls for his vlog, which he also posts during the day. If that’s not enough, he’s consistently the first to break Mariners news (this is admittedly anecdotal), despite having a whole slew of competitors (not to mention ESPN and Fox Sports).
If there’s one gripe I have with Baker’s blog (or news reports in general) it’s that he doesn’t link out often enough. But that’s actually pretty unfair, given that the bulk of the information he’s sharing is raw (and I’m pretty sure it’s The Seattle Times saying “no linking in news stories”).
He could also do a better job of what Patrick Thornton defines as beatblogging, but pro sports is an entirely different beast compared to your average beat (local education, etc.). Baker’s access makes citizen journalism a virtual no factor in his reporting (and pro sports is one of the few places where that’s still the case). So again, this is kind of an unfair point.