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  • Writer's pictureJake Klausner

MLB Lockout 2021 News

Lockout Rolls On, More Manfred Drama

It's been about a month since we last spoke about the lockout taking over the MLB. Since then, not a lot has changed; there continues to be a divide between the players and the commissioner.

Things seemed to escalate further when one of the MLB Network's top news breakers, Ken Rosenthal, found out he would no longer be working at the Network after Rosenthal criticized commissioner, Rob Manfred.

Rosenthal, who is widely considered as one of the best baseball insiders, was kept off the air for three months following a series of columns he wrote in 2020, which analyzed Manfred's handling of the pandemic situation, as the season was in jeopardy that season.

According to the New York Post, the columns may have featured some minor criticism but didn't dive into anything personal.

In one piece, Rosenthal wrote, "As if the perception that Manfred is beholden to owners and out of touch with players was not bad enough, he was trending on Twitter on Monday after performing a massive flip-flop."

Following these columns, Rosenthal was suspended from MLB Network but returned for the Aug. 31 trade deadline. His role with the Network slightly diminished after that, and by the time his contract came up, the Network chose to move elsewhere.

The MLB Network is league-owned, and through the lockout, they have limited the amount of live programming. has seen similar declines. In addition to working at the MLB Network, Rosenthal is an employee at Fox, where he is a dugout reporter and has covered the World Series. Additionally, he is also a writer for The Athletic, where he wrote the Manfred analysis.

The decision of MLB Network to make that kind of change isn't the first time something like this has happened. Earlier in 2021, the Network relieved Chris Rose of his duties, but that was due to budget cuts.

Nevertheless, the short-sighted firing of Ken Rosenthal caused plenty of uproar from social media. Guys like Noah Syndergaard and Gary Sheffield Jr. (son of former MLB player Gary Sheffield took to Twitter to voice their opinions. However, the post that caught my eye was Ken Singleton, former Yankees three-time all-star, who retired from YES Network in 2021.

"Ken Rosenthal has been an excellent reporter and writer on all things baseball since covering the Orioles years ago in Baltimore," Singleton tweeted. "For the MLB Network to let him go is short-sided and reduced the credibility of the whole product."

Over the last seven years, Rod Manfred has made certain decisions detrimental to the game. That culminated a couple of days ago when the MLB Network fired Rosenthal because of criticisms.

If I were Rob Manfred, I would understand why those articles would make him upset; they made him look bad. However, to go as far as to hold a stupid and unnecessary grudge, and decided to dump one of baseball's most beloved journalists. It's further proof that Manfred has a massive ego and doesn't understand anything about the game.

The reason why Manfred is coming under fire is that the decision by MLB Network to dump Rosenthal did nothing for the other hard-working reporters at the Network.

MLB execs insisted that they've always wanted the MLB Network to be "editorially credible and they would not interfere with the journalistic duties of the correspondents," as said by the Boston Globe.

Then, all because Manfred got his feelings hurt, the MLB Network goes ahead and dumps Rosenthal. Since MLBN is league-owned, Manfred's firing of Rosenthal suggests that anyone working for the Network can't talk wrongly about him.

In conclusion, I'm not sure what Manfred expects to gain from all this in terms of credibility because everyone hates him already. I mean, the MLB is currently in a lockout, and no one has a clue what's going on.

I think this further cements that Rob Manfred has a massive ego, and he's only in it for the money. He always talks about what is wrong with baseball, yet he doesn't do anything to improve it; he only makes it worse. In other words, he's only in it for himself. The firing of Ken Rosenthal only enhances that fact.

Jake Klausner covers all things sports for Keep your eyes peeled for NFL Analysis, all things MLB, and more from Jake.

Follow him on Twitter @jake_klausner

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