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.”

New Idea: Times’ writers told to be interesting

NOTE: On Sunday the LA Times will publish a letter telling subscribers there will be no more baseball box scores, game stories of the Dodgers, Angels, Kings, USC and UCLA or any effort to get anything happening in sports into the newspaper if it happens after 3 p.m. The Times will be printing the newspaper in Riverside beginning in February necessitating the early deadlines. The San Diego Union-Tribune, enjoying the same ownership and press considerations, has elected to not make these changes until after the baseball and football seasons.

By T.J. Simers

In anticipation of the changes in the LA Times’ sports section and the decision to place a greater emphasis on its website, sports editor Iliana Limon Romero recently gave her staff printed instructions on how to write.

They are now being told to write interesting stories.

You can imagine the concern of soccer writer Kevin Baxter, columnist Helene Elliott, and Lakers’ writer Dan Woike. It will mean a whole new way to write.

This radical move is not being designed to save the printed product, but instead to improve the LA Times online with the newspaper expecting a lot of subscribers to cancel their paper after the changes have been made next week.

It might be more telling if most people do not cancel their subscriptions. Or, if they do and do not go online.

This new-found emphasis on quality and giving folks what they want, assembled by Austin Knoblauch on behalf of Romero, begins with stories that typically do well for the Times.

  1. Exclusive breaking news
  2. Breaking news that is published quickly
  3. Investigative reporting
  4. Features with strong topical, societal and pop culture tie-ins (take it off the field; don’t have to be all about sports). Deep dives into individuals. More unique, previously unreported facts in a story, the better, Focus on specifics, not broad strokes. Relevance and timeliness are important here
  5. Hyperlocal news stories with topical, societal or pop culture tie-ins.
  6. Analysis about breaking news or controversial news (what happens next? What’s the bigger impact? How will this affect players, teams, leagues, etc) Rely on our expertise as reporters…

You can see where Angels reporter Sarah Valenzuela had trouble reading on.

The columnists were instructed to write “columns taking a hard or unconventional stance.” Thus, Plaschke following orders and sucking up, told the Dodgers to trade for a starting pitcher Friday morning.

By the way, the reporters learned that “how to watch big event stories tend to be high in page views.” I guess Times’ online readers don’t know much about sports and require help.

The “how to write more interesting” handout suggests reporter/columnist roundtables on topical athletes, events, actions. Look for those soon with the expectation here they will disappear a short time later.

The handout suggests the Times’ writers focus on unknown athletes who are standing out all of sudden. Just think how good the Times might be if the reporters had been told that earlier.

The handout suggests Times’ employees write about news stories with strong pop culture and societal connections that have viral potential. Do you think the Times’ culture critic Tyler R. Tynes read the handout?

The Times’ writers were also given a list of content that tends to struggle on the web site, such as stories about athletes/teams having a “good” offseason or they’ll be better next season. This is known as the WOIKE RULE.

Times writers are now being urged in bold type in the handout to “bolster your social brand and footprint.” I might have just said, Tynes, David Wharton and Brady McCollough need to write more.

The fifth-grader primer goes on and on like this blog: “On post-game takeaways,” the writers are told, “focus more on the so what portion of the story. Don’t look back so much-advance the story.” So much to learn for writers.

But as you can see, once the writers learn how to write interesting stories, the Times’ web site is really going to make up for the less-than-fulfilling newspaper.


Journalist Bill still talks hope for LA Times

GUEST COMMENTARY: Bill Dwyre is the award-winning former sports editor of the LA Times. He was named a Red Smith Award winner in 1996 for his service to journalism. He supervised more than 100 people, including 59 credentialed reporters for the 1984 Summer Olympics. Nicknamed “Journalist Bill” by LA radio icon Jim Healy, he’s a Notre Dame fan living in USC territory thereby displaying his toughness.

       By Bill Dwyre, former LA Times Sports Editor

Years ago, probably the early 1980s, a high editor at The Los Angeles Times decreed that baseball box scores were taking up too much space and that the sports department would, henceforth, not run them.          

   The amount of newsprint real estate chewed up daily by baseball box scores has always been jealously coveted by newspaper editors, especially those who deal with what they like to call “real news.”  That phrase was always meant as a snub to a sports section and was always taken as such.

          The 1980s experiment lasted one day. The outcry from readers was so loud that the box scores returned immediately and the high editor who had made the call returned to his glassed-in office to focus more on “real news.”

           Now, there appears again to be box score trouble in River City, aka The Times.

           Apparently, in a letter to readers coming Sunday from the current sports editor, the box scores will be once again removed in a section that has long been the sports standard-bearer for the West Coast. There will also allegedly be other changes, including such early deadlines that game reports will have no chance of getting into the next day’s paper. Did Ohtani hit another home run, strike out 10 again? Is Freddie Freeman still hot and among the best in National League hitters after last night’s game?

             Google it.

             Or go to the web, we are told. But when we arrive at, it is like finding our way through the jungle along the Amazon River. 

             When the box scores leave, has the circulation department staffed up to take all the calls? Will the uproar be enough to turn heads, change minds?

             It is also a different world now. The number of people screaming into the phone about canceling their subscriptions back in the 1980s was a fraction of the 1 million-plus circulation of the paper those days. They could have been ignored and the damage would have been minimal. But they were not ignored. The outpouring today won’t be nearly as loud because the circulation is a mere fraction of those newspaper hey days of the 1980s. But can this paper sacrifice any fraction of its reading public when the newspaper reading public still creates around 70% of the paper’s revenue?

              This is, we are told, the result of limited press time at area papers where The Times will start being printed early next year. As stupid as that is as a business matter—an historically industry leading newspaper without its own presses—there apparently still are six months remaining to address this, to figure it out, to save this once-great institution from being the final cautionary tale in the book about the end of print journalism in a country that, now more than ever, needs it. Sports is only a part of that, but it remains a driving force, a leader in “driving eyeballs” (an expression frequently used now and one that should be hated) to the printed page.

               How often has Dodgers’ fan Joe Jones zipped to the sports pages for news—not long gooey stories about some local kid who emulated Mookie Betts’ batting stance and got a hit in his high school Jayvee game—and found a story about a community issue he needed to know and understand? That is what a newspaper is, a journey seeking the expected and stumbling across the unexpected and important. We should not be amazed at how many box score readers end up being better citizens while pursuing Mike Trout’s current batting average.

           Criticism without ideas for solutions always feel shallow. So, let’s float one.

           If the Times sports section is destined to become a daily attempt at the long-gone days of Sports Illustrated, with its deeply reported, poetically written and artistically displayed stream of stories—all running well towards 2,000 words—then take the writers who do that and keep them scrambling. Seven days a week of this quality is nearly impossible, and I don’t see an abundance of Jim Murrays and Rick Reillys and Mike Downeys and Mark Heislers and Richard Hoffers and Randy Harveys and Tommy Bonks and Mike Littwins and Scott Ostlers and so many more like them floating around. But they may be there, just needing a push.

          As for the remaining high quality of sports reporters and columnists, unleash them on the dreaded web, give them 10:30 p.m. deadlines and daily game and news assignments and pound on the table about the need to break news. Talk about producing the best sports web site anywhere–despite the walks through the Amazon–go after stories that cry out to be pursued and seldom are, and make the sports presentation of LA, so good that maybe, just maybe, some of the jilted box score readers might get in the habit of signing on, instead of strolling to the front porch.

        That’s pipe dream stuff, of course, but it is better than just caving to a horrifying bad business decision (no press ownership) and letting all the canceling box score readers further diminish your circulation numbers and national image.               

         There is a sports cliché, emerging from the sport of boxing, that fits here. It says: Never be measured by whether you are knocked down, but by whether you get back up.

San Diego covering sports; not LA

By T.J. Simers

I find it telling that the San Diego Union-Tribune, owned by LA Times’ owner Patrick Soon-Shiong, will also be moving to new presses in February necessitating changes in the printed copy.

One difference: The LA Times is making changes in sports before the end of the Dodgers’ season and the start of college football and NFL seasons.

The Times is in a hurry to get rid of the print newspaper and knows eliminating box scores, Dodgers and football coverage will infuriate readers, convincing some to cancel their subscriptions. The Times’ hope is that this will send everyone online, where they intend to make money without absorbing the cost of newsprint and the use of presses.

Just like TV with streaming charges for platforms like Hulu, Paramount, Paramount Plus and Apple, the Times intends to charge for sports coverage online, believing people will go to rather than ESPN and other sports platforms. And I can’t believe I just wrote about platforms.

Apparently, the Union-Tribune is still interested in caring for its sports readers, who enjoy the newspaper, and will not eliminate coverage of baseball and football in the printed copy until it is forced to do so.

I still find it dumbfounding the Times and Union-Tribune sold their presses.

Owner Patrick Soon-Shiong is not making these changes to his sports product; the editors at the times are the ones jumping the gun, and beginning Monday the Times will stop covering the Dodgers. They stopped covering the Angels when the season began.

USC has not posted times for all its games, but you can be pretty sure Times’ reporters and columnists will not meet the new 3 p.m. daily deadline to report on the game. That means readers will get stories on the Saturday games in their Monday newspapers.

You will be getting lots of overwritten features instead, and countless stories on Caleb Williams.

The same can be said about UCLA, although it does not have Caleb Williams.

It’s become abundantly clear Times’ sports editor Iliana Limon Romero doesn’t care about readers. She has no LA institutional knowledge, the understanding how important the Dodgers are to so many people, or the Lakers, and I guess the Kings. She hired an Angels’ writer who can’t write and a culture critic who doesn’t write.

She has two other writers, David Wharton and Brady McCollough, who write less than Tyler R. Tynes, the culture critic. She seems to have the inability to hold them accountable, and yet no problem taking away your daily sports coverage.

Former sports editor Bill Dwyre made the sports section special, going back to the ’84 Olympics while also riding the marvelous run of Jim Murray. So much good stuff, and now all we await is the big illustration on page one of sports saying, OUT OF BUSINESS.

The new format will make her job easier. The Times will run one story on the first page of sports and huge pictures or illustrations. Some days there will be no story on the first page, A good bet is you will be getting lots of soccer. Everything else, including Plaschke and Hernandez, will be jammed inside. On a bright note, Helene Elliott will probably never make it to the front page again,

Keep in mind none of this has to be done at this time. The Times could still give you coverage of the Dodgers, USC, UCLA and so much more but they are in such a hurry to annoy you, make you mad and cancel your subscription.

It will be different for readers of the San Diego Union-Tribune — at least until February.

And I’m guessing Patrick Soon-Shiong has no idea about any of this, so he obviously doesn’t care.

I need Facebook or Instawhatever help!!!

By T.J. Simers

On Sunday you will receive a letter on page one of sports from sports editor Iliana Limon Romero explaining how the LA Times is going to kill off the printed newspaper in the hopes of pushing you online.

The sports staff was informed of all the upcoming changes Monday, Romero telling them, “We are not trying to kill print subscriptions.”

She will tell you this is all being done in your best interests and to showcase the Times’ sports staff’s talents. How do you showcase Angels’ reporter Sarah Valenzuela’s talents?

Keep in mind someone on Romero’s staff says they have never worked for anyone who lies more than the present sports editor of the Times.

This ultra dramatic change in the printed sports section will officially start next Monday, although it need not start until February when the Times will have to use presses in Riverside because they sold their own.

What newspaper sells their printing presses?

Romero explained to her staff she’s not waiting until February, but prefers to ruin the reader’s experience now to make it “clear to the readers we are not offering what we did in the past.”

You get that, readers.

Romero told her staff the Times will no longer write about Lakers’ or Dodgers’ games because the newspaper recently laid off something like 70 copy editors. The newspaper cuts its own throat and you, the reader, pay for it.

“We are committing to a daily sports magazine format … so we should not be pushing to get game results in print,” Romero wrote her staff. “We’re shifting to a single story daily sports cover, paired with either photography or illustrations.”

I guess this means Plaschke and Hernandez become Page 2 at best.

Gone are the days of opening the morning newspaper, reading about the games the night before, checking out the box scores and being told what else is new in sports. What happens Monday night in Dodger Stadium will not be told in the newspaper until Wednesday, if at all.

There is so much more involved here with the once great LA Times being put down, and I am going to write about it every day this week. It would be helpful if you could get the message out to Times’ readers on Facebook by asking them to retweet or reFacebook or whatever needs to be done.

I might even start a Facebook account.

Tomorrow I’ll write about the online tips Romero gave to her staff Monday to help them understand what readers really want.

I’m sure it was news to a number of reporters.

Boo-hoo, Houston cheated six years ago

By T.J. Simers

What did I think about Plaschke’s Friday morning column in the LA Times telling Dodgers’ fans to boo the Astros for cheating six years ago?

Juvenile. Trite. Stupid. Hackneyed. High school quality. Cornball. Desperate. Immature, Get over it. Half-baked. Grow up. Mad, because Lakers didn’t follow your advice? You want credit because Astros get booed wherever they go? Ridiculous. Boo-hoo. Cheap. No real work necessary to write it.

You write: “They’re wearing your rings.” I’m confused. You want the Dodger players to boo? The fans don’t wear World Series rings.

You write “The pain has not abated” after six years. Obviously, you are still in pain and that’s sick because I know you really don’t care who wins. Are you being phony?

You write: “The anger has not softened,” and I guess that’s why we have such an angry society, and thanks for stoking it some more.

You write: “The outrage is still real.” Yeah, Cody Bellinger, Justin Fields, Andre Ethier, Joc Pederson, Corey Seager and Chase Utley can barely get on in their daily lives.

What do I think? I’ve moved on to Yellowstone and what Kevin Costner is doing to my favorite show. Boo. Boo.

I know the Times measures the effectiveness of its writers by counting the number of hits they get from each story, and tapping into the Dodgers’ fans who might live and die with how Brandon Morrow might get revenge tonight….oh, I forgot, he’s no longer with the Dodgers. Make that Yu Darvish…oh. Well Kenley Jansen…

The Astros have two active players remaining from 2017, but Plaschke pretends he is raging mad. You see what happens when the Lakers give him nothing to write.

You write: “This was about you. This was an insult to your city. This was a punch to your passion. This was personal.”

Come on. Get a grip. Really? If the city has to be reminded it was an insult and punch to its passion, it couldn’t smart all that much six years later. So silly. Infantile. Nitwitted. This is what happens when a newspaper lays off 74 copy editors.

I remind you it’s in the Dodgers’ DNA to choke. That seems to be a bigger problem than someone banging on a trash can. Much ado about nothing six years later. Water under the bridge. Been down that road before. Just garbage.

Unless this gives Yasiel Puig one more chance to buy a ticket and really let those Astros have it.

Layoffs? No, Sports is bankrupting poor Soon-Shiong

By T.J. Simers

Dear Patrick Soon-Shiong,

I hate it when anybody is laid off, a journalist waking up one morning and learning their career is over.

Pat, and I think I can call you that by now, I have no problem with you as owner of the Los Angeles Times trying to save some bucks. In a moment I will try to help you with that.

But yesterday you reportedly were getting rid of 74 employees, most from the copy desk as I have now been told, because someone has the crazy idea a universal copy desk would be more economical. The economist, who came up with that idea, obviously does not understand newspapers and should be immediately laid off.

That’s 74 people who had been working hard for years who are now out of work in an industry that doesn’t do a lot of hiring. That’s 74 people who did nothing more wrong than sitting on a copy desk correcting the work done by reporters. That’s 74 people who supported their families working hard for you.

Unfortunately, it shows how clueless you are as an owner, Pat. Where’s the recognition of talent, effort and a career of dedication? You have a former sports editor on your payroll making a good buck who is in charge of your video studios which no longer make videos. He’s in charge of a staff of zero, and how he fills his day would make a good story.

You have a horse racing writer who lives in Florida, undoubtedly charging you whatever it costs to fly to California to write horse stories. It would be interesting to see if he makes it first class. He also flies to Kentucky for the Derby, Baltimore for the Preakness, New York for the Belmont, California for the Breeder’s Cup—-all expenses on you, Pat.

And he was a former assistant sports editor who is a friend of your current sports editor thereby earning the favorable treatment.

You have three sports writers on your payroll who write less than once a month. And when they do write they usually present work that is unreadable. They get to stay home all day, and I guess practice what it’s like to be laid off. I believe their first names are Tyler, Brady and David.

Pat, you might want to ask your sports editor what you are getting for your investment.

The sports editor won’t know because there is no accountability in her department. Her No. 1 assistant, who was her friend before being hired, is living and working in Portland. I know more and more people are working from home, but if there’s no accountability in the department, here’s a good starting point.

He’s stealing money from the Times while living on the cheap.

Your sports columnists, and I’m not counting Helene because I don’t know anyone who does, are the lifeblood of your section. Plaschke and Hernandez can still make the Times’ sports section interesting to read, but I believe each one of them has appeared once in the newspaper in the last 11 days.

They no longer have assigned days to write so they can be lazy. Back when Dwyre was running sports, columnists had assigned days to write, like Monday, Thursday and Sunday. Two columnists then gave you six columns in the newspaper each week.

That allowed readers to stomach Helene on occasion.

Yes, your sports editor is dreadful. Talk to the veterans on your sports staff about how disorganized she is. She has surrounded herself with friends and sycophants.

How did Tyler R. Tynes survive the purge, four stories in eighth months? She was your editor Kevin Merida’s pick, so your sports editor will never dare irritate Tynes and his benefactor, Merida.

I was encouraged to hear Tynes expressed concern to another employee about his journalism future as the layoffs were being announced, and that he made an appearance on a sports Zoom call. It shows he has a pulse, maybe even a conscience while collecting his checks.

Sarah Valenzuela would not be able to get a job covering the Angels for the Times if she didn’t have an in with the sports editor. The Los Angeles Times, Pat, was so much better than what everybody is getting. You should be demanding better; it’s embarrassing.

If I was a copy editor being notified I was being laid off and Sarah Valenzuela remained employed I would question why I ever chose journalism as a career.

And that’s the problem, 74 people getting laid off reportedly and the decision based on how best to fill their void now with a universal copy desk instead of evaluating talent, scam artists and those shirking work already on the payroll.

That’s where you can save money, Pat.

Otherwise the public gets screwed, the product going to be poorer because, Pat, you aren’t paying attention. If you want to save money, how about demanding the talented who are not working to show up and produce.

I would imagine there are 74 people right now who would be willing to do whatever it takes without complaint.

OK, so they were copy editors and they would complain, but you get the point.

Griner Tortured By LA Times

By T.J. Simers

Dear Patrick Soon-Shiong,

Did you know, Patrick, that your newspaper is currently developing a bells and whistles system designed to go off whenever sports culture critic, Tyler R. Tynes, writes?

As you might know you have paid him to write three times since being hired in October last year. And I missed the third time.

Apparently the story ran inside the sports section recently, not worthy of Page 1 sports display and it was late again—-Two days after Brittney Griner played in Los Angeles.

An odd place to put a Brittney Griner exclusive.

OK, so it wasn’t exclusive, which begs the question not? Why is Tyler R. Tynes is writing it and not your Angels’ hack? You hire a sports culture columnist and I imagine your expectations would be that such a writer would come in handy with something like this.

I’m told the editor of the Times, Kevin Merida, who was the driving force behind hiring the waste of space that has been Tyler R. Tynes so far, told the sports department he wanted Tyler R. Tynes included in the coverage of the Lakers’ playoff run.

Two problems with that, the edict coming down before Game 4 and Tyler R. Tynes failed to show up for the assignment and the Lakers would not play again in the playoffs after Game 4.

I was told the guy showed up for the National Championship college football game a little tipsy after spending time with TCU fans, but I would imagine you would have to be tipsy to sit with TCU fans, And why should the writers in the press box be any different than the fans in the stands?

That’s what a source told me, and I see the Times loves anonymous sources using them everywhere in its USC athletic director story, and maybe we have the same sources.

Patrick, if you remember I suggested assigning your culture critic to the Lakers’ beat, so he might write something that might be read. His first two non-efforts, a story on Philadelphia football fans a week after the Super Bowl and a Victorville boxer knocked out in his fight were amateur hour attempts. The boxer story never made it into the newspaper, too long, too late and too much of nothing.

Editor Kevin Merida obviously has an eye for talent, spotting Tyler R. Tynes on one of those rare opportunities Tyler wrote elsewhere and recommending him to sports editor Iliana Limon Romero. Romero is in the business to impress the bosses so she immediately hired him.

But so far, and it’s only been three stories—two of which have made it into the paper—the writing is nothing but pompous puffery. She might want to act like an editor and help him.

If you are going to write a story on Griner as the Times’ Culture Critic, shouldn’t you do everything in your lofty media position to score an interview with her? He got nothing, and that’s nothing from her that anyone writing about her wouldn’t get.

“Well, I’m here, as Ms. Griner requested of us,” wrote Tynes to begin his story. “All of us, I may add. Fans, press, patrons and phonies — the entirety, included, Come, now. Don’t make that noise. There’s plenty of room for us in the cold corners of the Crypt. And anywhere would be a welkin…”

Would be a WELKIN? Cold corners of the Crypt? What noise?

Total overwritten garbage and Plaschke didn’t write it.

He’s goes on to write, “She was no Odysseus, I assure you.” Does that have something to do with Russell Westbrook?

“I could’ve sworn,” Tyler R. Tynes wrote, ” I saw a god with the flicker of the underworld’s blue embers, still trying to figure out how her new normal worked.”

They set Griner free in Russia and this is what she has to confront now in the United States?

Attention book publishers and book buyers

By T.J. Simers

I wrote a book, beginning with one of my lawyers who made poisoned hamburgers to silence a watch dog so her husband could take some guy out to the desert, cut his manhood off and pour bleach on him.

It was pretty funny when one of the Times’ lawyers tried to bully her.

One of my other lawyers was like the best attorney on the planet, and I know that because that’s what he said about himself in his bio. He had 11 kids, so there were some who believed whatever he said

One of my appeals judges was identified by Erika Jayne from Real Housewives as her husband, Tom Girardi’s mistress. Erika Jayne said Girardi gave my judge $300,000 in misused funds for a beach condo. And my appels judge voted to give me nothing.

The reason I mention all this, I was wondering if any of you could suggest a book publisher. Maybe you have a friend, a former college roommate or some kind of contact in that world. I tried one here in the L.A. area and he said he wasn’t interested in the legal stuff in the book. He wanted a book just on the sports folks I got to know on Page 2.

They are all in the book, of course, a book about Kobe, Phil Jackson, Pete Carroll, John Elway, Junior Seau and Plaschke. I even mentioned F.P. Santangelo, although he hardly figures as a sports figure.

I also wrote about my love affair with the Los Aneles Times, telling a judge, jury and lawyers, “I love the LA Times. Still do.” And while it isn’t much now, it’s still the Los Angeles Times.

But I sued the L.A. Times because the Times hired a managing editor and editor who tried to get rid of me. I won in court three times, and I wrote about that as well as testimony from Tom Lasorda, Joe Torre and Garret Anderson. I had Kobe’s name on a list to testify and our judge said he wasn’t interested in hearing from people who were going to just gush about me. Kobe would have laughed at that.

My judge wasn’t the best, and I write about that. He seemed to have no faith in juries, and how is that for a selling point to get people to serve?

A book agent said he detected no interest in the East Coast about a book featuring notables from the West Coast and a newspaper writer they never read. Ouch! I’d like to see them get close enough to Salma Hayek to be kissed.

My East Coast book agent disappeared faster than Gary Matthews Jr.

Some folks have suggested I go the vanity press route, and I got a feeling that’s a commentary on my ego and coming from my children.

I’m told if a book publisher takes on the book, I would get about 10-14% of what the book costs in royalties, while keeping in mind only 1% to 2% of all the manuscripts submitted to publishers result in a book.

If I self-publish, supposedly I could get 70% of what I sell, but then it would be up to me to find folks to buy the book. If only I had the names of alumni who have cheated when it comes to USC sports, I could print them in the book and it would become a best seller.

They say the average book these days sells only 350 copies; I don’t have that many family members. Probably never had that many readers. Maybe I should just blog the book.

I guess I could start a list of who wants to buy a book, assuring someone like Rob Pelinka anonymity, and convince a publisher there is an audience. But I don’t know how much more disappointment I could take. One more day of reading about the Angels might end me over the edge,

If I were Patrick Soon-Shiong, the owner of the Times, I would buy 350 copies and then burn them.

Maybe I should rewrite the book. and make it more flashy. I don’t know if I could get anyone to read about the lawyer the Times hired who wore a little bell around her ankle so whenever she had to go to the bathroom we would hear her tinkle.

But it’s a thought.

Hey, Mr. Times’ Owner: Your Columnist is Missing

Dear Patrick Soon-Shiong, owner of LA Times

I sent you an email on September 15, 2022 volunteering to return as sports columnist for the LA TImes, only asking that you pay my previous salary in the form of a charitable donation to Mattel Children’s Hospital. I would work for nothing.

I thought it a win-win, the Times getting a muckraking columnist to stir the sports waters and bring some life to a deadly dull sports section in exchange for continuing your quest to find the cure for cancer.

I never heard back from you. I’m not sure if you thought I was still in the process of suing the LA Times, but for the record, I won and the hedge fund that was financially responsible for the lawsuit paid my lawyers. We’re still haggling over legal fees, the judge claiming Alden owes more than $3 million, but none of that concerns you or the Times.

Did I mention I never heard back from you with my offer to write for the Times for nothing. What a great advertisement to go with my first column: YOU SAID WHAT HE WROTE WASN’T WORTH TWO CENTS, AND WE AGREE.

I bring this up because I’ve tried reading your sports section, and what was once a mighty newspaper with writers like Mark Heisler, Chris Dufresne, Jim Murray, Richard Hoffer, Rick Reilly, Mike Littwin, Scott Ostler and Mike Downey is void of entertainment most days.

I can’t tell you how many times I heard people say they remember the good old days when they had a clown writing on Page 2 in sports.

Now if you can bring Murray or Dufresne back to life or get any of the other gifted scribes to return to return to work for nothing I would gladly step aside.

I know you are part owner of the Lakers and a little afraid I might poke fun at the bums, but who better to get them going. You think Shaq, Kobe and Phil were successful all by themselves? Every team needs a Smush Parker.

Let’s be honest, I don’t know why you bought the Times. Seems like a loser to me, and I love newspapers.

But you didn’t get rich by being stupid. Your sports editor announced the hiring of Tyler R. Tynes on Halloween, some six months ago. And to date he has written one story, something about the fans from Philadelphia at this last Super Bowl, the editors running the story one week AFTER the Super Bowl.

One story and he’s been on your payroll for six months.

I used to write three columns a week, and so theoretically I would have submitted 66 columns for submission in that time, and while I had one column rejected by the editors on Levitra and spokesman Mike Ditka, I would have had more than 60 columns in that time generating negative email.

The sports editor of your newspaper sent out a tweet on November 29, 2022 congratulating the ghost that is Tyler R. Tynes for being named to Forbes’ under 30 media list of stars.

She also wrote: “We’ve got big things coming from him soon,” on November 29. I guess it was that story on Philadelphia Eagles’ fans that appeared in February.

PATRICK, aren’t you curious why you aren’t getting something out of your media star? I gather you would rather donate money to him than the cancer kids at Mattel’s. The Times used to have an editor who told me it wasn’t the newspaper’s job to help the unfortunate while stopping me from raising money for Mattel.s.

It’s not like I’m asking you to break new ground. You are already paying Tyler R. Tynes to do nothing; is it that big of departure to ask you to pay for the scribblings of a has-been writer with the expectation of not getting much.

How does a newspaper like the LA Times make such a hire and lack the institutional discipline to get something in return? Are you not paying attention to your newspaper, or at the very least the sports news you are giving your readers?

So far. the only thing we know about Tyler R. Tynes is that he is under 30 and has no work ethic, ambition or desire to embrace Los Angeles. And we know your sports editor lacks the ability to make her charges earn their keep.

Come on Patrick, don’t you expect more from your newspaper?

I know I do.

Sincerely, Tj….you can reach me at, or