Would You Trust This Newspaper?


I wouldn’t.

The newspaper is the East Oregonian of  Pendleton, Oregon. The subject of the headline was not, in fact, an amphibious pitcher, nor, as the photo above was labeled in its file, an amphibian pitcher, which really would have been a story. No, it referred to ambidextrous pitcher Pat Venditte, who was brought up from the minors by the Oakland Athletics last week, and who, while pitching against the Boston Red Sox (I saw the game on TV)  made baseball history by becoming the first big league pitcher to record an out as a left-handed pitcher and a right-handed pitcher in the same inning. In case you are wondering, the age-old question of what happens if a switch-hitter faces a switch-pitcher was answered quickly. Red Sox catcher Blake Swihart, came up to bat right-handed, then switched to batting left-handed because Venditte was then pitching right-handed. Venditte responded by switching his glove (it has two thumbs) from his left hand to his right to throw left-handed, and that’s how the situation stayed. Both batter and pitcher can switch once before the at bat is underway.

But I digress.

As for the headline, I won’t blame the reporter (he used the correct word in the story), but the headline writer, editor and anyone else on staff who saw the page before it was printed and distributed needs to find a line of work that doesn’t require English, writing, the conveyance of information, or common sense.


Pointer: The Sporting News

16 thoughts on “Would You Trust This Newspaper?

  1. Headline in the Richmond News-Leader MANY years ago. “Carter Says Pubic Education Is The Key”. If it had been anybody else but Carter, I would have assumed a misprint. I dropped my subscription.

  2. I’m thinking it might be a Yogi Berra reference: “He bats left and right, he’s amphibious.” Probably not the best place to make it though, given that it’s a West Coast paper writing about an A’s pitcher, even if Venditte spent most of his career on the Yankees’ farm.

  3. I don’t know if this is in mitigation, but I understood what it meant right away. The picture below says it all. I did not even catch the mistake until I read Jack’s post.

  4. Headline writers are notorious for inane and inaccurate headlines. Apparently it is a job requirement not to read the story you are writing the headline for. Or so it seems…….

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