I can’t make this stuff up!

By T.J. Simers

Dear Patrick Soon-Shiong,

OK, Patrick, if I am going to rip your newspaper as I have been doing, I thought I should take a look at it today and write about all the good things your newspaper is doing.

But before I could do that, I got an email about your sports section. And it was both ugly and disturbing.

Your new sports columnist, you know the one who has written but once in the six months that you have been paying him—producing a story about Eagles’ fans a week after the Super Bowl, is scheduled to write Tuesday for the second time. Three days after the fight he’s covering!

I’m told he spent a week with a L.A.-based fighter who is fighting tonight in Las Vegas. I did that twice with Oscar de la Hoya, writing every day that week leading up to his fights and then covering the fight.

You sports editor, Iliana, is apparently trying to keep it a secret that your new columnist will be writing again. There isn’t a single mention of tonight’s fight in your newspaper, no information for your readers, and who better to do that than the guy who has been with one of the fighters for a week?

Online they are calling it the “fight of the year,” but I’ve never heard of these guys. It doesn’t help that the Times doesn’t even mention they are fighting tonight, but I wouldn’t care anyways. But maybe some of your readers do.

I don’t know if your new columnist has spent the week with the fighter in Las Vegas on your dime, Patrick, but you might want to inquire.

Strange the newspaper would hire a columnist and not have him write, stranger yet hiring a guy with deadline issues.

This used to be the almighty Los Angeles Times, Patrick, and I’m trying my best not to be so negative, but I just opened the Saturday newspaper and there is Bill Plaschke’s Thursday column on the Clippers.

I read it online Friday, but there it is again in Saturday’s newspaper, two days after the game.

I know most everyone doesn’t care about the Clippers, but come on, it’s Los Angeles’ morning newspaper, and getting your No. 1 columnist two days later isn’t exactly “breaking news.”

What is going on here, Patrick. I read your main hockey story, and I can make sacrifices like that, but the writer never got to the final score before the story jumped to B9.

Your hockey writer is too long-winded, beginning her story by telling us, “it has become something of an inside joke among Kings’ fans,” and I couldn’t read any further. Two more paragraphs and still no final score and the game went into overtime and all that matters is who won?

I liked the fact, though, your Angels’ writer wasn’t suffering from jetlag after going all the way to New York with the team and writing about a Yankees’ cook. Grueling or grilling.

She gave us a story on Ohtani on Saturday, and I guess I’m a little surprised why your newspaper isn’t leading the charge to keep Ohtani here.

If the plan is to let him go sign with the Dodgers, fine. But your newspaper treats Anaheim like a desert outpost, and the best player in the game is playing there. You have a Japanese-speaking columnist in Dylan Hernandez on your staff— why not have Hernandez shadow Ohtani and give us coverage no one else can provide?

To show you hard I am trying to be positive, I read a Dan Woike story. I’ll let that sink in.

Woike gave us coverage of the LeBron James new conference, which was covered by all the media in L.A. No harm, no foul, so you can see I can be positive when I hold my nose.

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