More from today’s media column on the Michael D’Antonio book, “Forever Blue: The True Story of Walter O’Malley, Baseball’s Most Controversial Owner, and the Dodgers of Brooklyn and Los Angeles” (linked here)…..
== There was also some anti-Dodger sentiment from the TV and radio people in Los Angeles when the team arrived, D’Antonio found. Those in that booming media business were afraid that O’Malley had a deal lined up to start the first pay-TV service. He invested a lot of money into several companies he thought could pull this off for him, but it never panned out.
“It’s funny, he really foreshadowed cable television’s development, but he just couldn’t make it happen,” said D’Antonio. “That was one of the few things he lost money on.”
== Thanks to the free access to the Sports Illustrated website vault, the July 22, 1957 story that New York parks commissioner Robert Moses wrote in explaining why O’Malley was being so uncooperative can be read word-for-word (at this link). Unfortunately, there’s no photo of Moses to accompany it. We did find this photo of Moses, left, with the tie that may come close to it — and also explain how he worked the political machine in New York.
== And here’s the recent excerpt of the book that Sports Illustrated supplied in its March 3 issue (linked here), perhaps as a “make good” from the piece it allowed Moses to write some 50 years earlier.
== The other aspect of this D’Antonio book is that much of his research came from the O’Malley family files — much of which have already been accessable on the Walter O’Malley official website (linked here). Walter’s son and former Dodgers owner Peter O’Malley, with his older sister, Terry O’Malley Seidler, launched the site several years ago in an effort to make public many of the photographs, personal letters — pretty much everything — that their father kept on file. D’Antonio gained further access to longer, hand-written notes that could help piece together some of O’Malley’s business meetings, particularily documenting the times when he began to ask the New York politicians for some assistance on building a new facility.
== NBC has the Santa Anita Derby (Saturday, 2 to 3 p.m., Channel 4) with Tom Hammond and Gary Stevens, plus Mike Battaglia, Kenny Rice and Donna Barton Brothers. Also, Bob Neumeier will be live at the Illinois Derby.
== The docudrama series “Jockeys” will return for a second season of seven hour-long episodes this summe ron Animal Planet. The show focuses on the lives of seven riders at Santa Anita racetrack — including Mike Smith and live-in girlfriend Chantal Sutherland. The other jocks include Alex Solis, Joe Talamo, Kayla Stra and Aaron Gryder. For the new episodes, Garrett Gomez and Corey Nakatani will join. John Court will leave the show as he moves to Kentucky to ride. Animal Planet says more than 9.2 million viewers watched the show’s initial run of 30-minute episodes, which ended March 13.
== Long-time WNBC-TV sports anchor Len Berman in New York told the New York Times he will leave in May and work more on his website www.lenbermansports.com and do more with his blooper video series.
== AND FINALLY:
Sorry if we’re a little tardy on this, but DirecTV announced recently that it will feature a new show this summer on its 101 Network channel that takes Dan Patrick’s radio show one step closer to being a full-on TV series.
There’ll be some 250 episodes a year spinning off Patrick’s show that airs from 6 to 9 a.m. locally on KLAC-AM (570). It’ll air live, Monday through Friday, but “more than just a straight simulcast of the radio program,” according to the DTV folks.
“Dan is much taller and funnier in person and when he’s not behind a desk,” said Eric Shanks, executive vice president of Entertainment at DIirecTV. “You never know what Dan could do whenever he is left to his own devices but it sounds like it will be a twisted version of ‘The Office’ with some guests and sports commentary mixed in-at least that’s what he is telling us anyway.”
Asked about the new show, Patrick said: “I’m a natural for DirecTV. I work best when you point me towards the southwesterly sky with an unobstructed view.”