When the Minneapolis Star Tribune's Michael "Randball" Rand got Erin Andrews to discuss her thoughts on the infamous Mike Nadel column, not only was it a great get for him, but it also showed a testier, more defensive side of EA. "I think my overall reaction is that it's really sad that in 2008 … I have people watching every single move I make," Andrews told Rand. "When there's a big game between the Cubs and Brewers going on, it's sad that that's what their focus is on. … And the last thing I had heard is that when you want to do a story on someone, you contact them."
Andrews also disputed Nadel's claims of her caressing Alfonso Soriano's bicep ( I was looking for the broken bone in his hand!), calling Aramis Ramirez "Rammie" (Wha?) and Lou Piniella's va-va-va-voomism (Happened, but he's, like, my dad...ya know?).
But just when you thought the provincial finger-wagging out of the Midwest's sports media was finished, it turns out some of Milwaukee's finest Brew Crew chroniclers were also rattled by la rush of Erin Andrewsness. Drew Olson of OnMilwaukee.com said he witnessed Andrews being a little handsy with Brewers players as well during last Wednesday night's game:
As for her "flitting" and "flirting," that was pretty much the same on the Brewers' side. Andrews came on the field while the Brewers were stretching and hugged centerfielder Mike Cameron, who I assumed is one of the few Milwaukee players she has met before, and spoke to a few other players while gathering information for the broadcast. When it comes to getting interviews, attractive women generally have an edge over dumpy men in Dockers pants. That's why it was a bit heartening when Ryan Braun turned down Andrews' request for an interview on the field and told her to ask him later. It was one of those "Welcome to our world" reactions.
Yeesh. Olson did a follow-up story Saturday when he wrangled in FSN Wisconsin's perky-pretty sports reporter Trenni Kusnierek to sound-off on Erin Andrews' professionalism and, of course, that dress.
"I understand that Erin Andrews isn't considered a "journalist" so the same rules that apply to writers and television reporters, do not apply to her. She (and ESPN remote game crews in general) gets better access to players and managers and the story lines Erin follows are often very different from what (Journal Sentinel beat writers) Tom Haudricourt or Anthony Witrado are going to write.
"With that said, I still think reporters should hold themselves to the highest professional standard. I found her dress to be inappropriate for the workplace. Even some Brewers players said that although she's great to look at, the dress wasn't appropriate for the ballpark.
...[A]s for Mike Nadel's column, it was refreshing to see someone hold her accountable instead of ogling her in print. It was obvious by the comments made by Lou Piniella and Cubs players that the outfit and behavior were unacceptable.
"And I know what all the guys out there are going to say, 'Trenni is just being catty because she's jealous.' Trust me when I say I'm not. Erin is a beautiful girl with a body I'd kill for. I know she's hotter than me. But, she'd still be better looking in a professional outfit, not just in glorified lingerie. As a female in the same business, I wish she'd realize how damaging it is to an entire gender when she carries herself in that manner. It sets us all back to a time where female sports reporters were all seen as husband hunters who were only in the business to catch a cheap glance.
For better or worse, this issue isn't going away anytime soon. It will be brought up again. And again. But the next time Erin engages in questionable journalistic-y behavior, it may not result in 1,000-word columns stealthily critiquing her every move while she's doing her job, but it'll be noticed. And it won't just by every shlumpy beat reporter forced to jockey for quotes without the aid of a hard body and an ESPN press pass. It'll be the players. The organization. The security staff. Maybe it won't be a big deal and the next time Erin does an ESPN game she'll be properly pantsuited, de-glamorized and less personable for the sake of "professionalism." But that'll give the impression that ESPN— regardless of Norby's impassioned defense — does think her behavior and wardrobe were, in fact, inappropriate for Wednesday night national baseball game coverage. We'll find out soon enough: Andrews is in Arlington this Wednesday to cover the Yankees/Rangers. Come Thursday morning, the outcome of the game will once again become secondary to how sensibly-attired she is and if somebody caught her asking Josh Hamilton if she could count his tattoos. I wonder: Is this still what she signed up for?
Erin Andrews: My overall reaction is it's really sad [Randball]
Fashioning a Ballpark Debate [OnMilwaukee]
A Female Journalist's Perspective on the Erin Andrews story [OnMilwaukee]