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Write a book critical of the Mets, lose media credentials

Feb 6, 2012, 12:29 PM EDT

Image (1) Mets%20Logo.png for post 3903

Note: if you write stuff the Mets don’t like, they’re probably not gonna give you media credentials. Just ask Howard Megdal of the LoHud Mets blog:

Since taking over the LoHud Mets Blog in March 2011, I have been credentialed numerous times by the New York Mets-100 percent of the time my editor here, Sean Mayer, has requested credentials. So it was odd that last week, Sean received a call from Jay Horwitz, the Director of Media Relations for the New York Mets, telling him that while the Journal News can continue to receive credentials, the Mets would not be credentialing me.

Sean asked why that was, and Jay responded that the Mets “don’t like my reporting”. The team declined to respond to my multiple attempts to reach them for a fuller explanation.

Of course, Howard just published a book about the Wilpons, Madoff, David Einhorn and such, so I presume that’s the reporting they “don’t like.”  Earlier this winter the Mets accused Megdal of being a liar and a self-promoter, but his account in the book has held up as far as can be determined. Megdal and his publisher stand by it and much of it has been corroborated by other reporters.

My view:  if a reporter abuses his access by either breaking rules of the ballpark or acting unethically, sure, cast him out.  But keeping him out simply because you don’t like what he has to say?  Please.

Of course, ultimately, the Mets can do whatever they want with their media credentials. It’s their business and their ballpark and they have complete power to keep people out if they want to. They just have to realize, however, that when they do this kind of thing they look like petulant and thin-skinned children.

  1. Cris E - Feb 6, 2012 at 12:39 PM

    Think about this from the Mets’ perspective: if they squash this bogus, self-published internet hack job then there’s a good chance no one will ever find out about their “situation”. They rustle up a couple of those $20m side bets and by May they’re in the pink. Try to take a broader view here.

    • jwbiii - Feb 6, 2012 at 1:49 PM

      The publisher, Bloomsbury USA, is a real company. They’re publishing Jon Krakauer’s latest.

      • Cris E - Feb 6, 2012 at 1:56 PM

        I’m well aware of that. Apparently I’m just a little too dry this week for at least a dozen folks.

      • Old Gator - Feb 6, 2012 at 4:22 PM

        Dry? You’re positively desiccated.

  2. WhenMattStairsIsKing - Feb 6, 2012 at 12:39 PM

    This isn’t fight club; this is a huge MLB team facing dire times and despicable owners. If you DON’T report on them as a baseball journalist and/or blogger in New York, you’re not doing your job.

    Here’s to hoping the crap Howard and those in similar positions goes away soon, because they have work to do. And Howard does it well.

  3. yankeesfanlen - Feb 6, 2012 at 12:40 PM

    Jim Bouton suffered ultimately no permanent damage, and I daresay that it was a little tougher crowd across the river than what the Wilpons are.

  4. Kevin S. - Feb 6, 2012 at 12:43 PM

    This wouldn’t be the first time the Mets threw a hissy fit because they didn’t like reporters doing their jobs.

  5. sdelmonte - Feb 6, 2012 at 12:56 PM

    At least no one accused him of angling for a job with the team.

    But this is indefensible. It’s not like a good reporter can’t find ways to do his job without access to the clubhouse, anyway. It’s not like I had even heard of the book till now, in fact. So this would count as an effort backfiring.

    And it really seems beneath the skills of Horwitz, who seems like a well-liked person and was possibly made to do this by higher-ups. Then again, all I know about him comes from his own efforts to promote the team.

    I will bet that LoHud – one of the better baseball blogs around here, and one that – only draws inspiration to report the news that much better.

    • sdelmonte - Feb 6, 2012 at 12:57 PM

      Meant to say, one that has let a couple of my friends do guest posts on the Yankees sub-blog.

  6. billb09 - Feb 6, 2012 at 1:11 PM

    I have been a long and loyal Met fan since attending my first game (banner day 1968) , but honestly did this guy really lose anything? There is nothing worth reporting except the rich get richer but who cares. Please Mr. Wilpon’s sell the team, I love citi field hate that it’s a shine to the Dodgers only the giants did play here also and the damn dodgers and there greed are the reason
    NY lost national league baseball in the first place.
    SELL THE METS please!!!!!!!!

  7. lessick - Feb 6, 2012 at 1:14 PM

    Talk to Nestor Aparicio in Baltimore. A little different because he organized a fan walkout several years ago but he’s still a journalist.I think MLB needs to enforce guidelines on credentialing. Denying a credential for criticizing team sets a horrible precedent.

  8. Francisco (FC) - Feb 6, 2012 at 1:58 PM

    It’s their business and their ballpark and they have complete power to keep people out if they want to.

    They seem to want to keep the fans out too with the product they’re fielding this year…

  9. bduronio - Feb 6, 2012 at 2:25 PM

    I don’t have anything personal against Howard, and I absolutely disagree with removing someone’s credentials for writing something the team dislikes. However, do you feel that Howard should have been credentialed in the first place? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qVdx7vROVXo

  10. Old Gator - Feb 6, 2012 at 4:24 PM

    ” It’s their business and their ballpark and they have complete power to keep people out if they want to. ”

    You can say that again. And they’ve really proven it for the last couple of years. Only, before they did it with losses; now they’re doing it with bullying.

  11. ndnut - Feb 6, 2012 at 5:27 PM

    What happened to freedom of the press??????????????

    • paperlions - Feb 6, 2012 at 6:21 PM

      Nothing. Freedom of the press protects you only from prosecution by the government. Private entities can take whatever legal actions they desire.

  12. cool10857 - Feb 6, 2012 at 7:13 PM

    The Wipons are liars and cheats. Just sell the team and get out of NY.

  13. mojosmagic - Feb 6, 2012 at 10:52 PM

    What’s the guy supposed to do? Write fiction?

  14. buffalomafia - Feb 7, 2012 at 12:31 PM

    Please get ur sorry ass Triple “A” team out of Buffalo!

  15. Bizlaw - Feb 7, 2012 at 1:53 PM

    This isn’t just clubhouse access, it’s his full media credentials, meaning he can’t go to the games to report on what happens, so he has no access to players at post game news conferences (held in the stadium), etc.

    Other reporters should boycott the Mets to protest not issuing credentials to someone who has been critical of the organization. Don’t cover the team at all (maybe that’s what they hope will happen so no one will be around to air out their dirty laundry).

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