On Saturday, ESPN.com posted another installment of Rick Reilly®'s zany "Riled Up" video series, but it was quickly yanked. The "State of Statues" segment was up for a short period of time before ESPN.com's content ninjas intervened.
The segment was Rick Reilly® getting Riled Up about Selig's statue in Milwaukee and all that is wrong with constructing a statue like this because it gets Rick Reilly® Riled Up. But he was too Riled Up for ESPN's taste, apparently.
Our old, dear friend Josh Krulewitz was kind enough to track down why it was necessary to remove Reilly's notoriously powder-puff commentary from ESPN.com. The answer:
"We removed the posting because the closing comment was unduly personal by our standards. The commentary up to that point reflected viewpoints appropriately discussed on our air and other media outlets."
Unfortunately, he won't share any transcripts or repeat what Reilly® said about Selig. And, remember, this is not the first time personal comments about baseball's commissioner have been stifled by the WWL. Scott Van Pelt once said some off-the-cuff remark on his radio show about Selig carrying a pimp cup which veered into "unduly personal" territory. He was suspended for his comments.
There is no official comment on the state of Reilly's employment, but chances are he's not going to be suspended for whatever cuddly Al Jaffee joke he used about Selig.
And, yes, this brings us back to the WWL's arbitrary system of tastelessness/newsworthiness when it comes to its content and its employees. Historically, the official party line from ESPN has been that it will always be consistently inconsistent and dealt with on a case-by-case basis, whether it's Arash Markazi cock-loitering LeBron James in Vegas, or Jemele Hill invoking Hitler, or Lou Holtz invoking Hitler, or whipping out cell phone pics of your dick, or banging production assistants while married. Every ESPN employee and piece of content is a special snowflake made by Lord Norby in his Magic Bristol Snowflake Shop.
But, in this case, it's a little odd that there were two comments about Selig that were made and then quickly rectified or erased. I wonder why Jerry Jones didn't get the same protection?
Maybe Selig's pimp cup is a little larger than once suspected.
Oh and, please, if you know what Reilly said at the end of the segment, pass that along.