Ever since Mike Francesa announced a little over a year ago that he would be giving up his afternoon drive-time show on WFAN where he has been ensconced since 1989, it had become a media parlor game to guess how that station’s management would try to replace him.
Last week the speculation ended as CBS Radio issued a press release announced that Francesa would be replaced by a troika. The anchor will be former SNY “Loudmouths” co-host Chris Carlin with both former Jets linebacker and CBS Sports personality Bart Scott, and Sports Illustrated’s Maggie Gray flanking him.
Shortly after Francesa announced that he had enough of the WFAN grind, Chris Carlin surprisingly left SNY where he had been a fixture since the cable TV network’s inception ten years earlier, to take a co-hosting job at Philadelphia’s WIP.
Like WFAN, WIP is owned by CBS Radio, is an all sports station, and has even more passionate and obsessive callers than even what you hear in New York. Philadelphia is a wonderful city but too much of their identity rests with the success of their sports franchises for a major city. No one has ever said that about the Big Apple.
A year ago I predicted in this space that CBS Radio execs were sending Chris Carlin to Philadelphia on a tour of duty as a warmup for the big time. I wrote that he would be renting and not buying property in the Delaware Valley. Chris read my column and he responded by saying that while he appreciated the speculation about being Mike Francesa’s replacement, he planned on staying in Philadelphia for a long time.
Chris Carlin is a solid choice to succeed Francesa. He knows his stuff but more importantly he can play the part of the arrogant, know-it-all to callers, which is almost de rigeur for a high profile sports talk show host. By the way, both Francesa and Carlin are personable and approachable off the air. A lot of what you hear on talk radio is an act.
Former Mets and Yankees star Carlos Beltran announced his retirement following a twenty-year career in which he posted Hall of Fame’calkiber numbers on offense and he was a perennial Gold Glove winner for his work in centerfield.
Newtown High alum and former Mets general manager Omar Minaya signed Beltran to a seven-year contract when he was a free agent following the 2004 season. That signing put the Mets back on the baseball map after four disappointing seasons.
Too many of the Flushing faithful have held a grudge against Beltran because he struck out on a tough curveball thrown by the Cardinals’ Adam Wainwright to end Game 7 of the 2006 National League Championship Series. Folks, it’s time to grow up.
After years of rumors, Madison Square Garden CEO James Dolan announced last week that his corporation is looking to sell the New York Liberty of the WNBA. The Garden has run the Liberty ever since the inception of the WNBA in 1997.
The New York Liberty have always been a good team but they’ve never won a WNBA championship and that has had to have frustrated Dolan. Even the acquisition of one of league best players, former University of Connecticut star and Queens native Tina Charles, has not been enough to win a trophy.
The Liberty have provided MSG Network with some live sports programming during the slow summer season for them but the ad rates can’t be very high. There has not been a full-functioning press room for years for a Liberty game.
The annual Jewish foods show, Kosherfest, took place last week at the Meadowlands Expo in Secaucus. Not surprisingly, household names as Manischewitz and Streit’s had the biggest booths but it was also a chance for lesser-known to most kosher food players as Kacyo (which makes gluten-free snacks, salad dressings, jams and much more), Sholom Tea and Sprinkles Ice Cream to gain some awareness.
Westminster Foods is a Long Island-based conglomerate that produces such diverse brands as its Westminster Oyster Crackers (oysters are not kosher but oyster crackers can be. Who knew?), Gold’s Horseradish, and Fox’s U-Bet Syrup which I remember was the only syrup that candy stores in New York and Philadelphia would use for making egg creams when I was growing up.
Abeles & Heymann, a kosher meats purveyor, spoofed the annual July 4th Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest by having a “best dressed hot dog contest” where contestants had two minutes to put as many unique condiments and other toppings on a wiener without affecting its kosher status.
Kosher Troops (koshertroops.com), is an organization that ships boxes of prepared foods to Jewish members of the military who are stationed abroad, also had a strong presence at the show.
Staying hydrated is a key to good health but drinking still water all of the time can be boring so it’s not surprising that there were a lot of beverage companies at both Kosherfest and a new trade event, the Consumer Discovery Show, that was held late last week in Tribeca and was aimed towards milennials.
Treo Water (drinktreo.com) displayed its organic birch infused water while XYZ Beverages and Lifeway, which is beat known for its kefir, promoted their Press and Elixir lines of sparkling waters respectively.
Bee’s Beverage Corporation and Blume Honey Water are two companies trying to popularize low calorie honey-infused aquatic drinks. Honey water is ideal for those who want to give up sugary soft drinks but hate diet sodas because of the aftertaste.
The Consumer Discovery Show had non-food & beverage exhibitors as well. There was an endless amount of vendors pushing skin care and hair products but there were a few exhibitors that stood out. PiperWai makes charcoal deodorants that are effective but don’t cause skin irritation as some mass market brands can. Madison and White were showing their satin pillows which the company founder, Kamela Hurley, claims are better for both getting a good night’s sleep and protecting your skin and hair from damage.