I now know that I don't follow the media so closely in Philly as perhaps I should. Recently, it's come to my attention of a flap between Howard Eskin, a Philly sports media legend, and the Phillies ace, Roy Halladay. Eskin had accused Halladay of not being available for media interviews recently and after the season ended.
Does, Eskin, who also goes by 'The King', in some circles, have a bona fide argument? I think you could answer: yes. Halladay has been given some 'hit them outta the park' interviews where all he does is basically comment on certain things that aren't that difficult to talk about. When it comes to tough questions I don't think he has been interviewed all that much really, but I don't think Eskin is talking about any tough questions, it's more like there can be no questions because he doesn't make himself available.
In a week, there will be the Philadelphia Sports Writers annual dinner in Philadelphia. Actually it is held in New Jersey, but for argument's sake, this dinner has been one of the longest fund raising events of it's kind for the media folks. Roy Halladay was invited, but didn't really jump at the chance to attend and mingle with the local writers. In fact, he had to be really convinced that he should be at this dinner. He will be, and that's a good thing. Let it be known though that he was kind of cool about the idea. The reasons could be many. An excuse for breaking a 'training regime' shouldn't be one of them. As a guy that is earning the kind of money that Halladay is, he should be more than happy to reach out to the community who supports him.
Whatever your opinions are about Howard Eskin is your own business. Some people like him, and some people don't. He isn't the guy that's going to just let you off the hook all of the time, and that's a little bit of what a free media in a free society should be like. An interview that looks like it's dreamed up from the Phillies PR department is not what the media should be. Be glad we have guys like Eskin around that care enough to say, "Excuse me, but something isn't right here."