ESPN has your hot stove right here, Mr. Curious About To Be Rushed To The ER With Third-Degree Burns

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One of the first shows that the new MLB Network decided to make a staple of its programming — in fact, the name of the first show when the channel debuted on Jan. 1 — was “Hot Stove.”

It’s one of those campy phrases that sports writers liked to use in the good, ol’ days to describe sitting around a hot stove — as opposed to a cold one — and talking about baseball in the winter months when it was dormant, hoping it could speed up the arrival of spring training.

Wonder where ESPN2 got the idea to televise a “Baseball Tonight” show called “Hot Stove Roundtable” — Friday, 5 p.m. — having Karl Ravech sit around with Peter Gammons, Tim Kurkjian, Buster Olney and Steve Phillips for an hour, just shootin’ the horsehide. No suits and ties. Just a bunch of experts expounding on their sport.

Too hot for one network to claim ownership of, apparently.

Like what Matt Vasgersian, Matt Williams, Dan Plesac, Sean Casey, Barry Larkin and some other ex-big leagers do on a daily basis over at MLB.

Wonder why John Kruk isn’t in on that discussion on ESPN? What do ex-players know?

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