I’m generally supportive of efforts to get more women working in and around professional sports, whether I’m re-reading Nora Ephron’s classic “Bernice Gera, First Lady Umpire,” a must-read if you care about women and baseball, or cheering Kim Ng’s ascent in the front-office ranks.
And I’m also not a big fan of policing anyone else’s sex life or personal conduct.
Watney bolted the Left Coast for Fenway Park when hired to cover the Boston Red Sox.
Watney made quite an impression in Beantown, on and off the field.
And having Heidi Watney’s worse than having a man in that spot. Surely, we can find one who gives good camera and good interview, and can do it without playing into the idea that women are either airheads or groupies when it comes to athletes.
Sideline reporter is not necessarily the most glamorous job in the business, either, but Suzy Kolber and Michele Tafoya have proven that women can do the job with dignity and use it in pursuit of actual information (even if drunken athletes hit on them), and while Craig Sager may have the world’s worst collection of suits, at least he’s got a sense of humor about his place in the game.
In a world where women have a hard time being taken seriously as commentators, Watney plays to the worst stereotypes of women in the game, a baseball Annie who doesn’t even have the cardinal virtue of the original, that she’s a genius at the sport.
A California native, Watney got involved in sports media as an anchor and host for KMPH-TV and KFIG-AM radio in Fresno.
She also worked as a sports reporter and assistant producer for KUSI News in San Diego.