Thank you for saying that. There is a long history here in St. Louis of excellent writers, and they have definitely set the bar for the rest of us to chase. I get to sit beside one of those writers for every home game -- and have for 16 seasons. I'd be a fool if I didn't learn something from Hummel, and if wasn't sharpened and made better by the late Joe Strauss and even from my time in Denver working beside Ringolsby and Etkin, briefly as I did. That said, it does trouble me about Twitter. I see it as a two-way street, and while I don't name-call, I will defend the coverage -- and will do so bluntly. What happens too often is if someone disagrees with my tweet or how I do my job, it can be a misunderstanding of the job (beat writer vs. columnist), a fair point (which I do accept, even if I disagree), or just flat wrong. I see a lot of presumptions about access on Twitter, or credentialing, or how sources work, etc., etc. I try to be transparent about the job because I feel that's important for readers to know -- and media literacy is so so so so valuable these days. You should know who is writing the story and how that story was produced. I think that helps set the Post-Dispatch apart. My goal is not to bicker, and I can never control the tone in which some people read my tweets. They find condescension where they look for it. But I also won't apologize for defending my work or that of my colleagues'.
And you have explained why. We have that bar to meet and our predecessors on this beat to honor and your investment in our coverage to return.