Right Field

Clubhouse Confidential: ‘The Show for the Thinking Fan’

“Hi everybody, I’m Brian Kenny and welcome to Clubhouse Confidential. This will be a show for the thinking fan.”

Longtime ESPN SportsCenter host Kenny’s jump to MLB Network is yielding dividends for his new employer. He ably anchors the baseball-analytics show Clubhouse Confidential on weekdays at 5.30 p.m. EST.

The informative yet breezy 30-minute program, which made its debut on November 7, features analyses of trades, free-agent signings, hirings and firings, player projections, regular-season awards, Hall of Fame candidacies, and comparisons of modern-day superstars with greats from the past, among other topics. The guests on the premiere were Peter Gammons, Rob Neyer, and Brian Cashman. Subsequent visitors have included a healthy mix of journalists, analysts, and baseball people: Bob Costas, Ken Rosenthal, Joe Sheehan, Vince Gennaro, Bill James, Buck Showalter, and Stan Kasten.

Make no mistake though: Kenny dominates nearly all of the conversations, which would be unfortunate were he not so friendly with his guests, even those who are not firmly entrenched in the sabermetrics camp. Moreover, the host is knowledgeable about the topics being discussed.

Here he is putting pitcher Gio Gonzalez, now the property of the Nationals, into “The Shredder,” the program’s in-house projection formula.

 

In this segment, “Cooperstown Justice,” he makes the Hall of Fame case for Red Sox right fielder Dwight Evans.

 

Here Kenny answers viewers’ questions about free-agent pitcher Paul Maholm and what are good defensive metrics.

Jason Epstein is the president of Southfive Strategies, LLC. He was a public-relations consultant for the Turkish embassy in Washington from 2002 to 2007.

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