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MEDIA SAVVY

September 11, 2005

Two Guys Going in Completely Different Directions

Lee Hamilton and Mark Gubicza.

Hacksaw was having a little problem reaching the young male audience, so the writing was on the wall for the poor guy. Gubicza has no such problem. He’s the successful head baseball coach at Charminade College Preparatory and a staple at Fox Sports Net West.

Hamilton had a good run at the various XTRA’s, and he’s to be saluted. And it was nice of management to keep him around for a little weekend work, where he’s safe from the ratings bugaboo.

But look, there’s no way to say it except to say it: Hacksaw is a nerd. He just comes across as out and out nerdy. Even without seeing his picture, you just kind of expect him to look like that. He never tried to be cool, which is fine by me, but if there’s one thing the 18-34 male simply won’t stand for, it’s uncool.

Hacksaw also suffered from a general lack of perspective, which I sum up this way: "Dateline Chavez Ravine. This just in off the sportswire. The Los Angeles Dodgers have fired longtime roving minor league middle-infielders coach, Rafael Landestoy, replacing him with oft-injured journeyman, no-bat, weak-fielding, ex-Dodgers shortstop, Dave Anderson. Uh-Maze-Ing!"

And there never really was a “Best Fifteen Minutes in Radio.” A best fifteen minutes in football, maybe. Hamilton was all football, all the time, regardless of the calendar. We frown upon that kind of thing here.

I don't know if the guy is a racist, but the term "sports-ist" seems to apply.

Gubicza, on the other hand, has created a nice niche for himself on the “Southern California Sports Report.”

Like Kevin Kennedy before him, Gubicza is a man of accomplished major league experience, and is a thoroughly smart baseball man. It shows in the studio. He’s critical when the situation calls for it, but always finds a way to tag a positive spin to his critiques.

Gubbie shares his thoughts on the Dodgers and Angels, and points out the steps each team should take to improve their chances. Kinda like what we do here, except he’s nice about it, which wouldn’t occur to us for a second.

When the clubs invariably do nothing. Gubicza just goes about his business, keeping his accentuation on the positive. Very refreshing, for this day and age. Let’s hope he’s around for a long time to come.

Hmmm, maybe Gubbie’s positive attitude is rubbing off on us. Nah.

Virgil Hilts

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