A conversation with Bryan Hatt

My conversation with comedian and podcaster Bryan Hatt; one of the hottest comics in Canada and a veteran of Yuk Yuk’s iconic brand. He’s filmed for Comedy Now!, CTV, CBC, and performed in major cities across the country and in epic comedy festivals such as JFL42, NXNE, and alongside Harland Williams at the venerable Massey Hall.

We talked about his existential thoughts on the Blue Jays in 2018, avoiding the prospect of a half-assed rebuild, how to digest the future of Mark Shapiro, if the front office can recover from what’s transpired over 24 months of what could best be descirbed as absolutely shambolic baseball, putting stock in the power of the brand and what it’s meant to him since childhood, his aching desire to witness post-season action in Toronto before the age of 70, rationalizing the decision to exercise massive patience with Vlad Guerrero Jr., how his passion for the game influences his comedy, and if a part of him truly believes that the team might simply be cursed for all eternity.

Be sure to follow Bryan (@BryanHatt) on social media and be sure to listen to the Chatting Practice podcast (@ChattingPod) on Apple iTunes – it’s about the best thing you’ll do tonight.

A conversation with Ben Reiter

My conversation with Ben Reiter, senior writer for Sports Illustrated & SI.com since 2004 and author of Astroball: The New Way To Win It All, where he prophetically predicted in 2014 that the Houston Astros would win the World Series by 2017.

We discussed what inspired him to dive deeper into the modern day baseball methodology when it comes to payroll/asset management, how his thinking evolved in contrast to the Moneyball realities of the game, his thoughts on Jeff Luhnow and the fateful decision to acquire Roberto Osuna amidst a character-driven modus operandi, why Ken Giles will be a valuable part of the future of the Toronto Blue Jays, and his candid take on the dwindling nature of batting averages and bases on balls over the voracious appetites for witnessing home runs and rampant strikeouts.

Be sure to follow Ben (@BenReiter) on social media and pick up a copy of his new book while enjoying fine work over at Sports Illustrated.

Ari Shapiro on Sportsnet 650 (Vancouver) with Mira Laurence (09-26)

My latest baseball insider appearance on Sportsnet 650 (09-26) in Vancouver with host Mira Laurence (@laurence_mira) talking about the departure and legacy of John Gibbons, if he would have been successful in leading the next generation of Blue Jays rookies, what fans will miss most about him, if he was too “old school” for the game of baseball, various reasons to be excited about the 2019 season, and thoughts on the Toronto Maple Leafs and Vancouver Canucks.

A conversation with Maurizio Bevilacqua

My conversation with the Honorable Maurizio Bevilacqua, the Mayor of Vaughan and member of parliament for 22 years where he holds the record for most votes ever received by a municipal candidate in Canadian political history.

We talked about his thoughts on the impact of professional sports and the taxpaying citizen, who should be responsible for keeping grass roots and community-oriented sports thriving, which player and team was his favourite growing up as a child, on the awesome power of nostalgia and what inspires him in life, thoughts on the double-edged nature of fan escapism, his candid (and mayoral) take on the Toronto Maple Leafs upcoming season, and his feelings on the crucial nature of political leadership and why it’s vital that “one serves before they should lead.”

Be sure to follow Maurizio (@mbmayor) on social media as he continues his fine work as a pre-eminent public servant working to make his community a better, worthwhile place.

A conversation with Mike Stephens

My conversation with writer and blogger Mike Stephens, whose passionate work with The Leafs Nation, Editor in Leaf, and the FanSided network has made him into a highly respected authority on all things Toronto Maple Leafs.

We discussed his initial thoughts on training camp, how far the Leafs have come in being legitimately recognized as a Stanley Cup contender, what he thinks might keep the team from being competitive this year, on the power of distancing a time-honored brand from a toxic environment and returning with a vengeance, which under-the-radar player has impressed him most during the pre-season, and the importance of having a winning culture at every level of a hockey organization from day one.

Be sure to follow Mike (@mikeystephens81) on social media and enjoy his brilliant coverage of the Toronto Marlies across all platforms.

A conversation with Mark Masters

My conversation with multi-sports journalist and hockey reporter Mark Masters, whose professionalism and candor is a true reflection of his venerable academic roots and industry ambitions.

We talked about his appreciation for fan value and their disposable income, if the Blue Jays can learn from the example of the Maple Leafs and Raptors, his candid take on William Nylander’s future contract destiny, on the annual enigma that is Jake Gardiner, his appreciation of Kyle Dubas and thoughts on this grand rebuild, and a hot take on the US Open fallout and the future of tennis.

Be sure to follow Mark (@markhmasters) on social media and check out his splendid work on TSN including That’s Hockey, and That’s Hockey 2Nite.

A conversation with Dave Feschuk

My conversation with veteran journalist and Toronto Star sports columnist Dave Feschuk, whose talents and versatility are always on display with his thought-provoking articles and incredibly well-written perspectives on everything involving major professional sports, eSports, and The Olympics.

We discussed his thoughts on the transition from baseball to hockey in the city of Toronto, if this was the absolute worst season he’s ever experienced from the Blue Jays, on the concept of Brendan Shanahan versus Mark Shapiro, how to start rebuilding credibility with the fans to avoid the prospect of living through baseball irrelevancy, on the innate satisfaction of covering the Olympics, his take on tempering Raptors and Maple Leafs expectations this year, why injuries have become a rampant financial drain on payrolls everywhere, and on the growing legitimacy and massive popularity of eSports as a legitimized form of sports competition in the world today.

Be sure to follow Dave (@dfeschuk) on social media and enjoy his prodigious output with The Toronto Star.

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