Former Dodgers public relations executive Josh Rawitch on Monday was named the new president of the National Baseball Hall of Fame, beginning his term on September 9, one day after this year’s induction ceremony in Cooperstown.
Rawitch replaces longtime Angels PR head Tim Mead, who resigned from the position in May to spend more time with his family. Mead on Tuesday was named in two lawsuits from Tyler Skaggs’ family claiming negligence from the Angels in the death of the former pitcher.
Former Hall president Jeff Idelson has been serving as interim chief since May 15, and will continue to do so through the induction.
“I am truly honored to join the team at the Hall of Fame, a revered institution that is fundamental to the preservation of the history of our game and its legends,” Rawitch said in a statement. “Cooperstown is a special place and every baseball fan who has set foot in the village knows how powerful that experience can be, while those who haven’t visited undoubtedly have it on their bucket list. My family is looking forward to being a part of the community for many years to come.”
Rawitch has been with the Diamondbacks for 10 years, including in his current role as president of content and communications. But before that he was with the Dodgers for 15 years, and was vice president of communications when he was the chief proponent of opening up a seat in the press box for bloggers in 2009.
This put the Dodgers at the forefront of recognizing online writers, even if it meant only an occasional game covered here and there. The spot was filled on a first-come, first-serve reservation basis. I was working a day job at the time, and living in the High Desert, so the 10 games I covered in person were all on weekends.
I found a way to cover a few more games in 2010, then increased again in 2011 before finally jumping in to sportswriting full-time in 2012. I couldn’t have done that without the help and support of many people, who were patient with a newbie who had a lot of questions. Rawitch is at the top of that list, and I have no doubt he’ll help amplify the Hall of Fame in his new role.
- Trevor Bauer allowed three home runs last Wednesday in San Diego, pushing his season total to 17 homers (it’s 19 after Monday night). After Wednesday’s start he said, “I have the worst home run luck in the league.” Ben Clemens at FanGraphs decided to check if this was true.
- The Dodgers’ patience and incredibly high walk rate are fueling the offense, writes Dustin Nosler at Dodger Digest.
- Jimmy Nelson has reinvented himself as a bullpen ace, says Carmen Ciardiello at FanGraphs.
- Mookie Betts is among the starting National League All-Star outfielders picked by Joe Sheehan on his subscription newsletter, which Sheehan says considers more than just the first half of this season. This year, following a pandemic, made the choices especially odd. “What we’ve had since the last All-Star Game is basically three disconnected half-seasons, and knitting them together to pick All-Stars is more art than science, and at that, more fingerpainting than Monet,” Sheehan wrote.
- The Dodgers remain the favorites of oddsmakers to win the World Series, given a 20-percent chance for a second championship in a row by OddsChecker. But only 5.4-percent of wagers were placed on the Dodgers in the last two weeks. Said OddsChcker spokesperson Kyle Newman, “The Dodgers are being crushed by the burden of expectation on the betting market. When everyone expects you to be the best in the league, it’s crushing when you aren’t.”