Monday, April 6, 2009

The Big News.


When I started this blog a little over a year ago, I really had no long-term vision of what this was going to become. All I knew was that my life was becoming progressively busier and more complicated, to the point where I could not in good faith continue to pretend to be a regular contributor to Baseball Prospectus anymore, but that I certainly did not want to give up writing about baseball entirely. So I made the only decision that I could make, which was to focus on the one subject that I was most passionate about: the Royals. The two hours a day I was spending just to keep up with everything going on in major league baseball was feeling more and more like work, but the time I spent keeping up with the Royals wasn’t work; that was life. I was about as likely to stop caring about the Royals as I was to stop caring about personal hygiene. So Rany on the Royals was born.

I’m still not sure where Rany on the Royals is going, but today I am pleased to announce that RotR is expanding its reach to a new platform. This Thursday at 7 pm CDT marks the debut of my new weekly radio show on 810 WHB Radio in Kansas City.

I imagine you’re all having the same response I had when they first contacted me: are the guys at WHB insane?! (No? Just me?) The brass at WHB have offered a radio show about Kansas City sports to someone who 1) doesn’t live in Kansas City and 2) doesn’t know the first thing about doing radio. This is an incredibly ballsy and unconventional move, one that could work out brilliantly, or one that could leave egg on a lot of people’s faces. (Don’t tell anyone this, but I think moving Mark Teahen to second base was Chad Boeger’s idea.)

I am, obviously, very flattered and grateful to the guys at WHB for giving me this opportunity. I’m excited as hell to do this, and also scared to death. Those of you who know me personally know that I have no trouble talking about baseball for an hour – it’s getting me to shut up that’s the trick. But talking among friends is one thing, talking coherently in front of a live audience of thousands – with a producer’s voice in my ear, with commercial breaks to plan for, where the inevitable mistake is going to be on permanent record – is entirely different.

The many phone-in segments I’ve done on radio over the years, many with WHB, give me confidence that I can do this. Just be aware it’s probably going to be rocky at first. Fortunately, I will be ably assisted by my co-host, Jason Anderson, who provides the experience and professionalism in this medium that I currently lack. We may be stepping on each other’s toes at first, but we should be doing our best Olbermann-Patrick impression soon enough.

Just be aware that I am going to make mistakes. I am going to say things that are simply factually incorrect. I am going to cut in when Jason is talking and vice versa. I am going to occasionally take a really long time to come up with a response. I am going to say “uh” and “er” a lot. If you can put up with my foibles at the beginning, I am confident that we’ll have a steep learning curve, and the show should improve as we go along.

The way I envision the show’s format is that after Jason and I talk about the Royals for a good half hour or so, we’ll have a different guest on each week to provide another perspective. Rob Neyer will probably be this week’s guest; it seems only fitting that we should get back together again to mark this special occasion. Kevin Goldstein, our minor league expert at Baseball Prospectus, should be on later this month, particularly after he’s had a chance to see Eric Hosmer up close when Burlington’s season gets going next week. I’ve got some other guests I’d love to bring on; really, one of the great perks of this gig will be the opportunity to talk to some really interesting and intelligent people covering the game.

And another perk will be the opportunity to talk with some of you. We’ll hopefully finish off each show with a call-in segment, and that’s where all of you come in. The goal of Rany on the Royals on the Radio – we’re still figuring out a name for the show – is to create a show that appeals to the most hard-core Royals fans out there. My goal is to have the most knowledgeable callers of any sports radio show in the city, if not the country. So when the phone lines open up on Thursday, I want you guys to light them up like a Christmas tree. Bring your questions, bring your opinions, and together let’s make this the best show it can be.

You’re probably wondering how the radio show is going to affect the blog. (I certainly am.) It would be disingenuous of me to suggest that it won’t affect the blog at all – including preparation time, each show is likely to take up at least three hours a week of my time. Of course, each column I write takes about that long, so whereas I generally wrote two or three columns a week during the season last year, this year it will probably be more like one or two. On the other hand, you’re also getting an entire hour of Royals discussion on the radio, and that’s worth a couple columns in its own right.

There may be a few changes to the format of the website as well. Given the incredible lack of effort I’ve put into the design of ranyontheroyals.com – really, a trained monkey could have designed something more appealing – I don’t think any of you will mind. Hopefully each show will be available in podcast form after it airs, and I hope to have a link to the podcasts from my website once they’re available.

I’m scheduled to be on The Border Patrol tomorrow morning around 8 am to talk more about this, if any of you are interested in tuning in.

So I hope you’re as excited about this as I am. The show is going to be a work in progress; there are likely to be a lot of missteps along the way. But it should also be a ton of fun, for me and for you.

Thanks to all of you for being loyal readers, and I hope you’ll all be loyal listeners as well.

61 comments:

Darin K. said...

Any chance that the show gets podcasted? I'd love to hear it here in STL, but connecting myself to Internet radio at the same hour every week is a no-go. Good luck!

Old Man Duggan said...

This is awesome. I'll be doing my best to listen from Texas. Magic will surely be used.

Minda said...

Woo! I hope you're able to make a podcast happen, for those of us who can't make it for the live show every week.

This is very exciting news, and I look forward to hearing Rany on the Royals on the Radio. (Honestly, that could be the show name. 'Triple R' for short.)

Kealee's Daddy said...

As long as it is just you and not Kietzman I might try to help my radio find its way back to 810...but I would also rather have a podcast.

Curtis said...

That's fantastic news. I love your segments with Keitzman, and I can't wait for the show.

Joshua said...

Congratulations Rany. Assuming that the web player on the front page of the site you linked to works I'll make sure to listen from Portland Oregon.

Ryan said...

Congrats! As a fellow Royals fan in Chicago (who's also busy on a lot of Thursday nights) I too hope it's podcasted.

AxDxMx said...

So.... are you doing the show from Chicago? Or do they fly you in here once a week?

Anonymous said...

congratulations Rany! Your blog provides some of the best Royals commentary available and I'm sure the radio show will be no different.

I'm really looking forward to it, thanks for catering to the serious fans and adding a little depth to the baseball coverage in KC, a city that I think badly wants to become a great baseball town again.

Mac said...

Rany-

Sounds awesome. Make sure to get those podcasts up onto iTunes for those peeps if possible too!

Good luck with the radio show.

Nathan said...

Alright, Rany, I am EXTREMELY pumped about this, but I have one question. What happens Thursday, May 14th? It seems like it would be silly to have a radio show on at the same time as the thing the radio show was about!

For me, this likely doesn't matter, as I'll probably be listening to the podcasts, but inquiring minds nonetheless want to know.

EddieK said...

i'm spazzing out! way to go rany! hells yeah. get those podcasts a going, cuz that's the only way i can listen. proud of you, dude.

Matt Berger said...

wow to say im stoked would be an understatement, I can't wait. Ill be listening to you online at 810whb.com your blog is so insightful and you will better an already great sports radio station. I look forward to each and every blog post like an addict, itll be nice to have a scheduled time I can get my Rany fix. (cant sleep, too excited for opening day)

Jimmy said...

Congrats Rany! I'll be listening in from California

BalmSquad said...

Good times, good times. As a faithful 810 listener in KC, this is perfect. Rany on the Radio will be a welcome addition to an already strong lineup.

steak said...

Congrats Rany! Finally, a talking head worth listening to. I'll have to change my radio presets :)

stephanie said...

Congrats Rany!! I come to your blog for everything Royals and think you'll be an awesome addition to the 810 lineup! I'm tuning in this morning to hear you talk all about your "big news"! Congratulations again!

Jason said...

I will for sure be there. For all of you outside of KC, 810 WHB has a great Livestream right on their website. Congrats Rany, this will be great.

Alex said...

Awesome news Rany! Congrats! I'll be listening from Chicago.

Anonymous said...

From Korean Fan

Congratulation, Rany!

I'm native Korean fan. I've followed Royals about almost 15 years.

I'm your sincere fan since Rob and Rany on the Royals!

Your optimism regarding Royals always makes me happpy.

Hopefully I can hear you on Podcast from 810WHB.

Chris C said...

This is great! I will be tuning in every Thursday.

RoyalGreek said...

Great news and good luck Rany. Can't wait to hear the show.

Anonymous said...

Great news, Rany! I actually know Jason quite well, and have had many spirited Royals discussions with him. He's a great guy who really knows his stuff and studies the game like crazy. The two of you should be great together. Can't wait to hear it!!!

rebmoti said...

That is good news. Definitely another vote for the podcast - Wichita isn't as far as Naperville but we still don't get KC radio.

Here's a guest suggestion: Mike Arbuckle. When I was in Philly in grad school the Phillies beat writer did an interview with him about once a month about how people in the minor league system were doing, what they were working on, their prospects of making the big club, etc. If he comes across as well on the radio as he did in print he would be an excellent guest.

Casper said...

That's pretty tremendous, Rany, congratulations on your achievement and success. Never thought I'd live to see someone improve their career prospects by simply being an uber Royals fan but it's really cool to see it happen. = )

Don't be a stranger on your blog, though - it's good stuff, and not just because it deals with the Royals: solid writing, anecdotal and funny, relatable to both the hardcore stat-head and the casual fan (my favorite posting is your Bloomquist rant - wasn't overblown or overthought, just a guy that was venting and frustrated and was getting it off his chest, just like most fans need to do from time to time with this organization).

Final thought: Nathan makes a good point, are you time-slotted against the very topic you're covering?

RD said...

Rany, great news. Other than Petro and his crew, KC is short on smart baseball talk.

D.W. said...

Congrats, Rany! I'm looking forward to listening and I hope there will be lots of good things to talk about this season!

ejfunk said...

This is great. No...this is awesome!! I tried hard, to be a fan of Greg Shaum's show, but I just can't do it anymore. Rany, your blog is excellent, and I cannot wait to listen to your podcasts!!

Hooligan said...

Great news! Please get a podcast of this available!Podcast it, podcast it, podcast it!

Edge - PA said...

As a KC transplant living in Palo Alto, you have just given me appointment radio.

Good Luck

Anonymous said...

This is awesome. Finally a hardcore Royals radio show where we can talk about more than just the same old tired re-hashed subjects. Congrats on the gig Rany!

Derek said...

This is great news, can't wait to listen. What isn't great is the fact that Farnsworth just gave up the lead on a 3-run bomb by Thome. Great pickup Dayton! Great move Trey!

Mike said...

So Farnsworth just blew his first 8th inning lead as a Royal (in his first game as a Royal) while Cruz wastes away in the bullpen.

Painful...

Adam said...

Please be sure to express how terrible of a signing Kyle Farnsworth was during your first radio show. KC needs someone in the media to hold the team accountable for HOW the Royals spend their money. Most people seem to be happy that they're spending at all.

Wilson said...

Unrelated.

here's a puzzler for you:
you're the royals manager. you have 2 outs in the 8th inning, and you are clinging to a one run lead. Kyle Farnsworth has already put 2 men on first and third. Jim Thome is up to bat. do you
1) call in your untouchable closer
2) call in a lefty, against whom Thome hit .196 against last year
3) let kyle farnsworth pitch
for the record
last year
kyle farnsworth gave up an OPS of 947 against lefties and 903 overall

I would like to see Rany stop defending that joker in the dugout who calls himself a manager.

Ribbie Reporter said...

congrats on the new gig. But can you talk about KYLE F-ING FARNSWORTH and how terrible he is? Aye caramba. I know we've got 161 to go and it's just one game, but what a terrible way to start.

Anonymous said...

As an east coast Rany on the Royals fan, I would like to cast another vote for podcasted episodes.

Pat Hobby said...

Seriously, did anyone think Farnsworth's debut was going to go any other way?

Shane said...

Post the podcast! I work, go to school and live in Portland, OR... the chances of me getting to listen are slim otherwise. Post it!

Anonymous said...

Farnsworth --- how f'ing predictable. Hillman --- how f'ing predictable.

Here's the bottom line:

Paying bad baseball players lots of money and putting them in crucial situations is stupid. It has never worked and it never will. Farnsworth is a bad baseball player.

You can't squirt perfume on a piece of shit and expect it not to stink. The shit smell is still going to stink up everything around it...just like Farnsworth ruined this game.

RD said...

Nice to see Kyle Farnsworth lived down to expecations. Even better to see the skipper give him the ball in the 8th in the first place.

drewfuss said...

well, rany, the boys in blue certainly wasted no time in giving you some ammunition for your first show. nice performance from Meche, based on the box score... not so much from the bats or the bullpen.

Anonymous said...

I know this is only one game, but it sets the tone for the whole season. Why not go lefty-lefty, especially when your righty is struggling? I was only watching the updates online, but I'll bet Mahay wasn't evening warming up. Trey had ALREADY MADE UP HIS MIND what he was going to do - it was in this morning's Star.

Playoffs my ass. Suckers.

Olentangy said...

Wow, just wow. If this continues, Trey Hillman needs to be fired before April is over. In this economy the Royals cannot afford to get off to a bad start and a complete BONEHEAD of a manager is not a luxury the Royals can afford.

Ryan said...

I am SHOCKED! SHOCKED! I can't believe KYLE FARNSWORTH NINE MILLION DOLLARS! gave up a three run home run. Neither myself, nor anyone else remotely familiar with baseball, lived in a town where FARNSWORTH NINE MILLION DOLLARS! has ever pitched could ever DREAM that he would blow major ass and give up A THREE RUN GAME WINNING HOME RUN on OPENING DAY.

When all of us got nauseous at the thought of the Royals signing FARNSWORTH for any money of all, found out that the Royals actually paid him NINE MILLION DOLLARS! we all knew this day was coming.

When Hillman said in Monday's paper that FARNSWORTH NINE MILLION DOLLARS! was the eight inning set up man, we all thought "he won't last until May." None of us could have guessed FARNSWORTH NINE MILLION DOLLARS! would blow it on the first day.

Nice work everyone. Dayton great job. Hillman? Way to ignore FARNSWORTH'S ENTIRE NINE MILLION DOLLAR CAREER.

$%&# you.

Ryan said...

One more thing....


KYLE FARNSWORTH NINE MILLION DOLLARS!

Everyone enjoy the $275 million renovation. I'm gonna stay here in Chicago and pray that the snow comes back for the rest of the week.

Anonymous said...

Listen to this:

In Hillman's post-game press conference, he said:

"I thought Farnsworth looked good, except for that one pitch."

Let that one marinate for a few minutes. He gave up 3 other hits that inning, besides the dong, and only got out of the inning because the Sox missed a hit and run and Dye got caught stealing. Yeah, Farnsy look real good, Hillman, you stupid mother-f'er.

Olentangy said...

I have to watch my discretionary spending. If the Royals don't care about winning games because they continue to tolerate an incompetent manager, why would I spend my hard earned money on visiting the stadium and paying the new, higher ticket prices?

Anonymous said...

I agree with you, Olentangy.

I hope there's a little phone conversation between David Glass and Dayton Moore today. I'd like to hear Dayton trying to convince Glass that he didn't really waste his $9.25 million, that it was really worth the money, that not all of Farnsy's outings will end like this. I'll bet Glass won't be easily convinced. Something tells me Dayton's, and therefore Trey's, leash just got a little bit shorter today. What a complete and utter joke - and every knowledgeable baseball fan saw it coming with Bottalico, I mean Farnsworth.

chjohn said...

Farnsworth sucks, but to let him face Thome is insane. Hillman has to know better than that. Thome murders righties.

Nathan said...

Way to call this one, Rany.

" Cruz is clearly a better pitcher than Farnsworth, and should be treated as such. If he moves into the 8th inning set-up role that was tentatively (and terrifyingly) handed to the Professor, who then moves into the middle innings role that he’s more suited for, this strengthens the entire chain of relief in front of Soria.


Twenty-four hours ago, the bullpen looked like a potential weakness for the Royals, simply because the potential for Farnsworth to suffer repeated eighth-inning meltdowns was so great."

http://www.ranyontheroyals.com/2009/03/you-snooze-we-sign-jose-cruz.html

Shelby said...

Rany, this is the BEST news I've heard in a long, long time.

You have, impossibly, made me an even bigger Royals fan.

Your baseball wisdom has taught me so much.


Ideas for phone guests: Lawrence's Bill James, Zack Greinke (the quote machine), Buster Olney

SmoothForCooperstown said...

That was so fucking predictable.

I refuse to waste emotional capital on this Titanic of an organization until Hillman and Moore are gone.

Moore overpays for this stiff and his bitch Hillman can't wait to put him in so he can pour gasoline on the fire.

Glad I sold my Opening Day tickets for a handsome profit.

Kevin said...

Rany, I hope you skewer Hillman for today's choice of pitcher in the 8th inning. Seriously, don't hold back. Let him have it.

Somebody has to or I fear Farnsworth will pitch in high-leverage situations the rest of the year.

Nathan said...

Kyle Farnsworth is da bomb!

I defended the decision to sign Farnsworth (if not the pricetag) on the grounds that the Royals said they'd seen something fixable in his delivery, and there was no cause to think they were lying. After one bad inning, that reason still stands. The man has a fast fastball and a slider that qualifies as an out pitch when he doesn't hang it. Unfortunately, in the past, like today, he's tended to hang it a couple of times an inning. Such problems can sometimes be corrected by a pitching coach, but today didn't exactly smack of correction. Let's hope he can turn it around as the season moves forward.

More importantly, I defy anyone to explain why a team's best reliever should be waiting in the bullpen when they have 2 outs, a 1 run lead, and 2 men on base for Jim Thome. This business of relegating the best pitcher on a team to the ninth frame has to be one of the biggest market inefficiencies left in baseball.

Anonymous said...

Good luck on 810. I'm sure it will be a good show. Talk to Soren a lot. That guy knows his stuff. The fans around here know who you are and they know your a big Royals fan.

BTW: For fans who want to know, 810 is pretty good about webcasting their shows.

Ben in KC

Pops said...

Wow, terrific news, Rany.
So why am I, as the Brits say, "gutted" by it?
Well, I moved to New Jersey last October, is why.
Sheesh, the first actual interesting, informed voice on KC Sports Radio (where Soren Petro actually has a reputation as being informed...sad), well, ever, and I'm not there?
This is whatI get for marrying a Manhattan (the island) native Yankees fan, all's I can figure.
All the best with the show, Rany!

Mark said...

Congrats Rany on the radio show. I am a veteran talk radio show caller(Michael Medved, Tom Becka, C-Span, various sport shows) so if the lines are ever dead I'd be happy to help you out, not that you will need it. I live in Omaha but 810 is a fairly strong signal when I am in my car. Unfortunately, my work schedule will preclude me from yelling at you very often. One baseball related point, if hitting in Arizona spring training is basically meaningless, how is it even possible for Mark Teahen to hit his way to a starting role. I like the conclusion but I have heard enough about meaningless spring training stats to wonder.

bfos said...

RE: Podcast

They already do podcasts at WHB, so you make sure to tell them that we all want that show in podcast form. Load it up with ads if needed.

Dan L said...

Great job Rany. I'm looking forward to listening every week.

Anonymous said...

Sorry but I'm going to have to stop visiting your post. I really enjoy your blog but anybody who has anything to do with Kevin Kietzman goes on my list.