Royle Rumbles Back to Beantown
After spending almost two years in Charm City, Jen Royle of CBS Radio (formerly of MASN) has decided to ship back up to Boston at the conclusion of the Ravens playoff run, which will hopefully be when we are hoisting the Lombardi Trophy in Indy.
It has been a tumultuous 21 months for Jen. She moved to Baltimore after covering the Yankees for 7 years, which automatically put a bad taste in the mouths of some of our small, rabid fan base. Couple that with the fact that she is from Boston, and the reactions of a very vocal few would make you think that she told all of Baltimore’s children that Santa Claus isn’t real. The fact that she is opinionated and not an Orioles puppet like some other (female) beat reporters made 105.7 & WNST fans alike grind their teeth. Oh yeah: She didn’t know a thing about football until the 2010 Ravens season began.
All of those things combined made it a bit of a challenge for Royle to get acclimated to the Baltimore sports beat. Let’s face it: We are not a forgiving city when it comes to our sports teams. You either need to be from here, have lived here for 20+ years, or drink the orange/purple Kool Aid to be a respected Baltimore sports reporter. In regards to the Orioles in particular, having an honest opinion on the direction of and various moves made by a perennially bad team is not always well-received by a jaded fan base. Yet she pressed on, sticking to her guns when it came to her view of the Orioles. Did you know that her initial job was to be an on-the-field reporter for the visiting teams at Camden Yards? Bet you didn’t.
As far as the Ravens are concerned, I commend her for working her ass off to attempt to learn not only the Baltimore Ravens, but football in general from scratch. I find myself trying to continue my education of defensive & offensive schemes, and it is no easy task.
The way that Royle has been judged during her tenure here in Baltimore is largely due to her interactions with people on Twitter. I don’t agree with some of her tactics on the social media site, but I understand why she handles her account like she does. She will not back down, and will attack when provoked. It has been on Twitter where I have read a variety of opinions when the news that she would be heading back to Boston broke. Some of them were what I expected: “Good riddance,” “She’s horrible,” “I’ll help you pack your bags,” etc. However, a good portion of them say exactly what I think: “We’ll miss you, Jen; Baltimore just wasn’t ready for someone like you.”
I have had the pleasure of knowing Jen for the past 21 months, and I am proud to call her a friend. I will miss you terribly, and I know that you will rock it in Beantown, regardless of what you decide to do. Please give me your meatball recipe before you leave!
* Photo courtesy of The Baltimore Sun. It was originally under the picture when I posted, but didn't show up. Thanks, angry commenter!