Thursday, January 20, 2011

Letters, I Get Letters: A Guest Article on Josh Lewin

Posting this in the ayem because I heard The Musers are going to talk about the Josh Lewin departure later today.

A few days ago I got an email from Confessor DallasDon.  I thought he had an interesting observation and he kindly gave me permission to post it,  Here's DallasDon:


I would really like to see a discussion about Josh Lewin, more specifically the chemistry between Josh and Tom, whether that led to Josh's departure.

I saw about 150 TR games last year, and really liked Josh. More than Tom.

Did you ever notice when they were on the road, and they would banter about what they did earlier in they day before game time?

It seems they were never together!

Tom would say "I had lunch at ..." and Josh would relate similar stories, but I never heard them say "we went to the ...".

Quite a contrast to the Ticket hosts on the road. 

Just a thought, might be interesting to see if others picked up on that.


Confessors seem to have a lot of STDs on Josh Lewin, so please let us hear from you.  I haven't heard much of the Lewin-Elfenbein show, but reports on that would be welcome as well.

For the record, I liked Josh as a Rangers broadcaster.  I did think the Josh-Tom chemistry was unusual, but I really got used to it and grew to look forward to it.

Thanks to DallasDon for permission to publish.

[Don't ask me why Blogger is screwing up my fonts.  If Google can rule the world, you'd think it could make an online word processor/publisher that was worth a poopoo.]


Anonymous said...

I didn't hear anything that I considered to whiff of "insider" by the Musers this morning. Just the same old "I really like Josh as a person, and I thought he did a great job; Rhads is a great guy and he'll do a great job" line. Perhaps I missed it, but as far as I know, Tom has never said a word about Josh leaving. Maybe he did have a say in the move to let Josh go? And if so, then maybe he had a say in the hiring of Rhads?

Regarding Josh's time with the Rangers: I thought he was very good. Over time, I grew to embrace his pop-culture references; and I loved his enthusiasm. Although there were times when Tom seemed put out by certain things he Josh said, I also believe that Josh (over the years) began to rub off on Tom. Especially where food, twitter, and broadcasting are concerned.

Josh and Elf: They aren't bad, but they aren't must-hear radio, either. For the life of me, I don't understand why The Fan's management/PD sees the need to have so many extra voices chiming in on each program. And for some reason management/PD believes that those voices must be female and sassy. Unfortunately, this apparent requisite for each show has reared its head on the Josh and Elf program.

Anonymous said...

"Josh and Elf: They aren't bad, but they aren't must-hear radio, either."

They sound like a radio program. A good - but generic - radio program.

"For the life of me, I don't understand why The Fan's management/PD sees the need to have so many extra voices chiming in on each program."

It's called "throwing stuff against the wall to see what sticks." They're trying anything these days. And the blatant Ticket-copying just continues unabated. That's the best reason to listen to the Fail these days - to see what they'll rip off next. The other day Greg went to break and Ritchie kicked in with a live spot for Gary Tylock. For a split second, I wasn't sure if I was on 105.3FM or 1310AM.

The funniest (in a sad way) thing is hearing their Board Ops try to do funny and timely drops. They just don't get it. Motht of the thime they play something really dumb at the wrong moment, and instead of adding to the presentation, it makes absolutely no sense and derails whatever was going on.

-Anon B

Douglas Sutherland said...

Amen on the drops, Anon B. The most obvious show the demonstrates this point is RAGE.

But the drops The Ticket has have accumulated through years and years and years, and The Fan is still a baby. That being said, they do miss the point on drops in general it seems.

I wonder why, if Bruce's motive is to be kind of like The Ticket (it seems like that's his goal),he wouldn't try to bring on ex Ticket board ops like Expo, Justin Neely, and Physcho Dave. (He may have for all I know. I don't know what those guys are doing these days)

P1 Steven said...

I enjoyed Josh & Tom. To me it was like listening to a father & son broadcast. I also agree w/ The HL, that by year 2 Josh was completely submerged in Ranger history. He talked about the team as if he had known them for years.

Scott said...

The drops are bad. They are really forced. RAGE has what, 2 or 3 months of history? That is not long enough to develop history or inside jokes. The inside stuff is the best. Their bits are also unimaginative.

I was not here to be a Day1/P1. But, I doubt that Skip had a board op forcing drops after 3 months, or the other shows for that matter. Someone please confirm or deny.

I got here in 2000, and even then, there were drops, but not as many or often as now. But, they are never or rarely forced, and they always flow, Big strong Jer and that Nice Young Michael Grubber are artists....

I liked Josh and Tom, felt the tension, slightly, and I mean slightly, felt like Gordo going after George, just a bit uncomfortable. I think he did a great job with play-by-play and question Rhads doing that.

I have listened a bit to Elf and Josh. Like everyone, they are average. They are better than a lot of the other things I have heard at The FAN and ESPN.

DallasDon said...

Yea, a bit disappointing there wasn't some inside info about the decision to let Josh go- as I said in my email to The Plainsman, it seemed to me they (Josh and Tom) weren't very close.

Out of dozens of references to being 'out and about' earlier that day, not one time did they refer to being out together.

Just wondered if there was some reason, and if it played a role in Josh's departure.

I doubt Josh or Tom would shed any light on any 'lack of chemistry' problems; it would have to be an outside observer if we were ever to learn more, me thinks.


P1 Steven said...

Anyone else notice how they have messed with Elf's levels? His voice isnt nearly as grating.

cancer monkey said...

I was a huge Josh fan and I loved the forced chemistry between him and TAG. There was nothing better than Josh cracking something that made himself laugh while Tom laid out on him. There were some painful silences, and those were the ones that made me and my wife laugh the most. I was really bummed to hear he wasn't going to be back, and I figured it had something to do with Nolan not getting him or Tom asking for a change. I'm not looking forward to Rhads, but I'm sure he'll grow on us just like Josh did.

Shaggy said...

I don't think it's unusual that Josh and Tom wouldn't hang around each other for breakfast/lunch/whatever. If they both get to the park 90 minutes (2 hours?) before game time, plus the 3.5 hours they're on the air, plus some wrap up, you figure they're together at least 5 hours a day, nearly every day.

That's plenty.

Hurricane Latarian said...

Re: Josh rubbing off on Tom. I got real sick of hearing about grandma's food item that Tom was so excited to have in the booth. That and "I'm puttin in the call on this one..." that rarely ever works. It'll be interesting to see how Rhads will do in his place.

Fail drops: No one can compete with Grubes in the drop department. It's like he's got an extra sense, where he knows P1's are thinking "play X drop" and it happens a split second after the thought comes into our head. Weird way to describe it but I think those that listen often will get what I mean.

Also, did anyone hear mike's dig at Greggo during E-news (I think that was the segment) today? They mentioned something about someone having to be on drugs to function properly or something along those lines and Mike said "Yeah, kind of like 3-7 on the Fan..." Corby and Danny seemed sort of taken aback by it.

Anonymous said...

I quite often hear little digs at Greggo by both the Musers and the Hardline - though mostly by the latter. Some are overt, some are subtle. From what I'm told, Greggo does the same thing on his program.

I've only listened to RaGE a few times. And I don't plan on listening to it again. It's rather awful. They have lifted so much from the 1998 to 2006 era of the Hardline, it's hard to even keep an inventory. Neither host seems to be too terribly original or smart. Greggo is ignorant and appears to care little about the truth. Richie is just plain pathetic.

Anonymous said...

I've always had the feeling that Josh's departure was because he didn't want to or couldn't prioritize Rangers playoff games over Chargers home games.

cancer monkey said...

Most likely, prioritization isn't up to Josh; it's a contractual thing. The Rangers not wanting to play musical play-by-play guys could be a factor in the move, though.

Anonymous said...

Where are this week's "Ticket Personalities Power Rankings"? I'd like to see if I cracked the top 25.


The Plainsman said...

Some awfully good comments on this string.

Anonymous said...

@Cancer Monkey

Yeah, but I'm sure the Rangers being the nice organization they are would have given him the opportunity to chose Rangers playoffs over Chargers regular season (that's what I meant before, not home games). In order to do this he really would've needed to give up Chargers altogether (when that contract is up) and he may not have been will to do that. Since there's so few NFL games in a season, they probably wouldn't be too favorable to him possibly missing two games a year.

tldr: it may have been his choice between Rangers/Chargers or The Fan/Chargers and he chose the latter.

P1 Steven said...

Josh would never have an issue to pick a Ranger playoff game over the Chargers. Local TV teams dont cover playoff games. I emailed Barry Horn, and he seemed to imply that the Rangers did not care for Josh's departures to cover the Chargers. I liked Josh. I liked his pop culture style. Listening to him and Josh was like listening to a father and son chat while watching the game. ALTHOUGH, Josh always looked like a 10 yr. old kid wearing his Dad's sports jacket before the game.

Jonaessa said...

I was never a big Josh Lewin fan, but I find myself already disinterested in having Rhads play the yuck monkey for straight man Tom. It seemed that every comment my husband made while watching a game, Josh would immediately echo--and almost word-for-word. So it got kind of annyoing, almost like Josh wasn't telling us anything we didn't already know or couldn't see for ourselves. (Josh and Tom are, after all, the TELEVISION guys, not the RADIO ones.) Plus, I'm with Hurricane--every time they "put in the call" just made me want to throw something at the television. The Musers even commented on this one: What's the point of putting in the call? If they called it wrong, there are no consequences. It's not like they put in the call, an out was made, and now Josh and Tom have to host the rest of the game in a Charlie Brown teacher voice. So what's the point?!

However, I have come to accept Josh as part of the background noise that I would have to listen to while watching a game. I know the corny jokes he's going to make and the awkward conversations that are going to follow a Knoxy bit. I don't really want to get used to someone else, especially since Tom is still going to be there! What does he have to offer? I get that he was a former Ranger, and I have all the respect in the world for him. But the He doesn't get the jokes or the pop culture references, and he only ends up coming off as irrelevant.

I can't wait to see how the two work out.

P1 Steven said...


I HATE the knoxy bit. My wife hates watching baseball because of the knoxy bits. They are soo freaking lame. It is my dream to one day win fan of the day & derail knoxy with TICKET schtick.

Jonaessa said...

I totally support you, P1 Steven.

DallasDon said...

I dislkie anything Knoxy.
I usually use Gordo's Tivo buffer zone, and jump through those parts.

But I didn't mind the 'making the call' bits- gotta fill those long baseball pauses with something.

But it's the "I want to thank the cookie lady" bits that were fingernails on the chalkboard to me...