So, What Did You Think?

By T.J. Simers

My first impressions of new-look Times’ sports section:

Picture of Ohtani looks great.

Was this some kind of announcement the newspaper will no longer ignore the Angels, making Ohtani poster child for change? I wonder if they waited for Ohtani to come to LA to take his picture; you know the Times doesn’t travel to Angels’ games.

Why didn’t they have Japanese-speaking Dylan Hernandez do an exclusive interview with Ohtani to go along with the poster and really kick off the new-look sports section?

You know this was the best the newspaper had to offer to showcase the new look to make a positive impression. Let’s see how it goes a week from Thursday.

The number of enhanced and large photos assure the Times’ photographers will win lots of awards.

The big pictures are nice, but whatever happened to Life magazine and Sports Illustrated, which featured great photos?

The back-to-back artsy-craftsy photos of players’ shadows on D-5 and D-6, though, probably means the photogs have hit their monthly quota..

I worry about AI creeping into the Times with all the big photos.

I’m not surprised Bill Plaschke has become the D-7 columnist.

Received a tweet from blog follower Jeff Brosnan who said, “For me, all they needed to add in was the box scores page and it would have been fine.” Keep in mind this was just a preview of changes. Starting tomorrow no results will make the paper if submitted after 3. It will be interesting to see how the newspaper covers the playoffs should the Dodgers or Lakers make them. No worries now about the Angels.

The sports editor wrote a letter saying, “I am honored to continue highlighting the incredible talent of the L.A. Times sports staff.” If she was already highlighting it in the newspaper why make these changes? I looked at the bylines and didn’t notice the assembled incredible talent. The first bylines shown in the new section were that of Dan Woike, Kevin Baxter and Helene Elliott—-same boring hacks.

She also told subscribers “Our new layout highlights our best, most ambitious sports journalism—distinctive work you cannot find anywhere else.” Well, you can find it online and that’s really what their hope is so they can stop printing the newspaper.

Taking out box scores and game stories an replacing them with big pictures seems hardly to be “ambitious.”

The way the sports section was laid out, the top two stories on a Sunday morning were the sports editor’s letter, and letters to the editor.

They gave you a Dodgers-Angels’ game story Sunday morning, but beginning next week if a game starts after 3 p.m. they will not. As the sports editor wrote in her letter, “You no longer will see box scores, standings and traditional game stories, but those will be replaced by more innovative reporting.” We’ve already seen a peek of that, Sam Farmer writing about Rufus the Hawk from Wimbledon, Baxter writing about a Uganda catcher fielding tires and Tyler R. Tynes focusing on the manager of a Miami nightclub in the Heat’s arena—you know, like the Forum Club.

They better hope Associated Press keeps writing.

I don’t see Jorge Castillo’s byline very often, but he did a really good job of research in retelling, “For the Dodgers, to try, try again is worth it for Ohtani.”

New-look Times has three soccer stories, same as old-look Times most days.

Wham, bam, I get a second Jorge Castillo story in the same section. Maybe the news the Times is making is, “Castillo Replaces Box Scores.”

2 thoughts on “So, What Did You Think?

  1. Well, given today’s NYT announcement, it looks like the LAT is once again a trend setter…Unfortunately in the wrong direction!

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