Media personality Mike Toth has inspired a few posts on this site during the 17 years we've been doing this blog.
It would remiss to overlook there is a Truth & Rumours report the Tother has been let go from Rogers Sportsnet. Toronto Sports Media chimes in "what that means exactly for his duties for the Fan 590 has yet to be decided," which is open to interpretation. It could mean something, or it could just mean it wasn't nailed down.
(Update: Well, that mystery is solved. He's staying on!)
Toth at least tried to make talking sports fun. He has been willing to go into the crevasse when it came sports topics that seldom get a good airing in Canada, like the Grey Cup's diminished standing, how culture played a factor in Ray Emery's departure from Ottawa (just as it does in the love-in the Ottawa Senators' for at-least-he's-local lunkhead Matt Carkner) or the way everyone pretends to be a huge junior hockey fan for during Christmas holidays because it "re-affirms our collective navel gazing tendencies," as Greg Hughes put it.
You could argue Toth's style is maybe on the wane. The Revenge of the Sports Nerd is at long last filtering up to sports talk radio, where the frat-boy mentality has long ruled the roost. No longer can you semi-seriously suggest Gary Carter would be a suitable manager for the Toronto Blue Jays, or say, "There are no female sportscasters that I can think of that have more knowledge than their male counterparts" without risking a bunch of swiftly well-organized wrath from the blogetariat and on Twitter. At the same time, if you start talking about WAR and VORP and quoting a bunch of statistics, people will change the station and Nelson Millman will put you on a diet of bread and water. It's a balancing act, people.
It's not negative. It keeps people honest, makes them challenge their thinking and become aware they don't live in the world they were born into. It's for the better, regardless of how much griping comes from misery-loves-company old media dinosaurs. There is the potential to cause people to offer tepid, inoffensive opinions, although if anything, maybe it will make people work harder to justify a minority opinion.
Personally speaking, Toth seemed all right. There are much worse things to be in life than someone trying to "stir the pot with a very short spoon," to quote Lloyd The Barber from Ghostrunner on First. It's also folly to take someone's on-air persona for the genuine article. Any communications medium has it limits and not everyone is the person you see and hear on TV and radio. Kinger, for one, swore by Toth, which says a ton.
Long story short, if Toth was shunted aside, it's a shame. We'll always have The Honky-Tonk Man.
Has Mike Toth Been Let Go From Sportsnet? (Toronto Sports Media)
Mike Toth dropped by Sportsnet (Truth & Rumours)