1. ESPN’s Sunday night Alex Rodriguez Show was extra special last night.
With the Mets playing the Phillies, the early struggles of New York shortstop Francisco Lindor was a big topic. Lindor, who recently signed a 10-year, $341 million extension after getting traded from Cleveland, is batting just .171 this season. He’s hit only one homer and driven in just three runs.
Rodriguez spent a lot of time rambling about Lindor’s swing and talking about the mental toll of a slump. In typical A-Rod fashion, though, things took a bizarre turn when he suggested the Mets penalize Lindor if he hits more than 20–25 home runs in a season.
This is the same Lindor who hit 33 homers in 2017, 38 homers in 2018 and 32 homers in 2019, which was a big part in him getting $341 million.
Naturally, this analysis struck a nerve with Twitter, which already isn’t a big fan of A-Rod in the booth.
The dilemma here is as old as time. The viewers think A-Rod is a trainwreck in the booth. Trainwrecks get attention. ESPN needs Sunday Night Baseball to get attention. Lather, rinse, repeat.
2. Speaking of last night’s Mets-Phillies game, this was one hell of an effort.
3. Fox NFL reporter Jay Glazer wants everyone to know he’s not related to Manchester United owner Malcolm Glazer and would appreciate it if soccer fans left him alone.
4. A Wisconsin cheese company is offering Aaron Rodgers free cheese for life if he stays with the Packers.
5. NBC says Saturday’s Kentucky Derby drew 15 million viewers. The event drew 8.4 million viewers in 2020, when it took place in September. It drew 16.3 million viewers in 2019.
6. The latest episode of the Sports Illustrated Media Podcast features two interviews.
First up is reporter John Ourand from Sports Business Journal. Ourand breaks down the NHL’s blockbuster TV deals with ESPN and Turner Sports, weighs in on whether this is a good or bad time to be a sports fan when it comes to consumption of games, linear TV’s reliance on live sports and the problem with streaming services. Other topics discussed with Ourand include Dan Le Batard’s startup, Meadowlark, partnering with Draft Kings, the rise of gambling content on game telecasts and more.
Following Ourand, former NFL defensive back Aqib Talib, who called two games for Fox last season, joins the podcast. Talib talks about his experience in the booth and the reaction he received from viewers. Talib also discusses covering the NFL draft for Bleacher Report, why he thinks mock drafts are bulls—, what he learned about Brady and Belichick while playing for the Patriots and why he thinks Peyton Manning should be the top-paid broadcaster in the NFL.
You can also watch the SI Media Podcast on YouTube.
7. RANDOM VIDEO OF THE DAY: The Rock turned 49 years old yesterday. We honor the occasion by remembering one of the greatest moments from our future president.
Be sure to catch up on past editions of Traina Thoughts and check out the Sports Illustrated Media Podcast hosted by Jimmy Traina on Apple, Spotify or Stitcher. You can also follow Jimmy on Twitter and Instagram.