Not sure if we really need this, but brace yourself because sources tell me it’s definitely coming to Canada in 12 to 18 months: Another all-sports television network.
This one will be run by CBC and its sportscasting guru, Scott Moore, who excelled as the programming chief of Sportsnet during its first few years.
• Ex-fullback Duane Forde is jumping as a CFL analyst from The Score to TSN, which means he’ll be working at the same all-sports network as his wife, Sheri Forde … I’m told new TSN chief Mark Milliere has persuaded the CFL to allow head coaches to be miked-up next season (a seven-second delay will be a must, I imagine). Also, I understand TSN cameras will be allowed access in locker rooms immediately after games … Citytv, a new possession of Rogers, is being carved up within the industry for its homer-style telecast last Sunday of an exhibition game in Florida involving the Blue Jays, also owned by Rogers. But, hey, I’ll take any broadcast featuring Barb DiGiulio and Kathryn Humphreys over any broadcast featuring Rance Mulliniks … The big issue at the Jays’ camp, by the way, is whether Casey Janssen should be in the bullpen (as manager John Gibbons would like) or whether he should be in the starting rotation (as general manager J.P. Ricciardi prefers). Second-biggest issue: Pitcher Shaun Marcum wants to gain weight. Problem is, he can’t, no matter how much he eats … And, seriously, is there an athlete on Earth who’s more injury-prone than Jays pitcher A.J. Burnett?
• Marian Hossa, obtained in a blockbuster deal by the Pittsburgh Penguins on trade-deadline day last week, will sign after the season with the Boston Bruins, where he will join his close pal, Zdeno Chara. Believe it … Buffalo goaltender Ryan Miller may jump from the Sabres to the Detroit Red Wings in the off-season … And, in Florida, expect Jacques Martin to be fired as the Panthers’ general manager/coach immediately after the season.
• The New York Mets are trying diligently to trade ex-Jays reliever Scott Schoenweis and his $7.2-million US contract … The Oakland A’s are attempting to acquire outfielder Juan Pierre in a trade with the Los Angeles Dodgers … The Yankees were all set to sign outfielder Shannon Stewart before the Jays did recently but the New York braintrust mysteriously lost interest … And Boston slugger David “Big Papi” Ortiz has persuaded Red Sox management to give him a raise and tear up his $12.5-million-a-year contract, which was supposed to last through 2010.