ESPN Still Clueless and Still Screaming

By Gary Norris Gray BASN Staff Reporter
Updated: August 27, 2012

Gary Norris Gray BASN Staff Reporter

OAKLAND, CA.( BASN)The power of the sports media continues to wield its mighty sword against African American athletes with brash statements and false innuendo. Within days, a Black athlete could have been in the hospital and/or on the (DL) Disabled List, because of callous words spoken. Fortunately, the athlete’s quick reaction saved him from serious injury.

But this time the Black Athlete stood his ground and challenged the two Bristol, Connecticut broadcasters. More Black Athletes should follow this example, than this kind of nonsense will stop.

(The question is, will other Black athletes follow the example and will this change the media’s perception of Black athletes in a positive light?) The Four Letter Word Network had teamed up two broadcasters for their morning show, ‘First Take’. Because of their variant personalities and egos, these two men should never be together, Screaming A. Smith, oh, I’m sorry, Stephan A. Smith and Skip Clueless, oops; I mean Skip Bayless decided to take a swipe at Number 2, captain of the New York Yankees. Yes, that’s right, clean cut Derick Jeter, the multiple American League All Star and World Series Champion, the leader of the world known New York Yankees. This is a man that mothers and fathers want their daughters to marry.

This incident just states that not a single Black athlete is sacred.

On Wednesday morning August 22nd, Bayless and Smith referred to the Bay Area athletes testing positive for Synthetic Steroids and being suspended for 50 games. The athletes in question were Bartolo Colon of the Oakland A’s and Melky Cabrara of the San Francisco Giants. They insinuated that Derrick Jeter was having one of the best years of his career, especially at his age, 36. These two intelligent reporters insinuated he might also be taking Synthetic Steroids.


Jeter entered the week leading the American League in batting average (.324) and leads the majors with 168 hits. Through 123 games, the shortstop already has twice as many home runs (12) as he did last year.


Bayless stated :-“You would have to have your head in the sand or your head somewhere else not to at least wonder, ‘How is he doing this?’

“I am not saying he uses a thing,” I have no idea. But within the confines of his sport, it is fair for all of us, in fact you are remiss, if you don’t at least think about this.”


The poison pen went out. The words spoken and maybe just maybe Cleveland’s Friday Night starter Cory Kluber watched the show on Wednesday morning.


Mr. Derrick Jeter stated “Whenever you have people that anytime you bring something like this to light with guys that are doing things, it’s like, now you have everybody questioning everything,” Jeter said. “That’s the unfortunate thing. Maybe Skip should be tested.”


Asked if he was bothered by Bayless’ backhanded accusation, Jeter shrugged.


“This is a first for me, man,” Jeter said. “I don’t know what to tell you … What do you want me to say? I ain’t getting involved with this, man. You can say whatever you want to say now, huh? There’s no repercussions.”

The first pitch to Jeter was a 93 MPH fast ball high and tight just grazing Jeter’s helmet, spinning him away from the plate. Jeter had some choice words for the young Cleveland pitcher Kluber. He also had choice words for Smith and Bayless. Was the pitch thrown on purpose? Only Cleveland Indian Corey Kluber can answer that question and he is not talking. An old unwritten baseball rule is that you don’t throw at a batter’s head. This is their livelihood and their career is on the line.


Which leads to the next question are Bayless and Smith responsible and should they be liable if Jeter went on the D.L. or hospital? Would they pay the hospital bills?


This may be stretching but these reporters at Bristol, Connecticut need to be careful, diligent, and research the story before making public allegations like this. Being controversial may be cute but it can end a player’s professional career, the repercussions are endless.


Just ask Lolo Jones, ask Gabby Douglas, or Chad Johnson, Terrell Owens, Donovan McNabb, Cam Newton, Vince Young, and Barry Bonds who have done nothing but play the sport they love. This does not happen to white athletes in the same degree. African American Sports fan only ask the reporters to be fair and honest something that is being lost in the art of modern sports reporting.


It was requested earlier in the article in June, “NBA on ESPN- Are you Listening”, on Black Athletes Sports Network about ESPN reported clearly and factually at the end of the NBA Championship. It can be done, Report the event and its highlights. THAT’S ALL.

Just thinking out loud, like Stephan A Smith and Skip Bayless.

©Copyrighted Gary Norris Gray @ Gray Leopard Prod