This was an update to the post below, but it got too long.
I've decided that I'm not irrational to feel offended. There is something legitimately wrong with a Major League Baseball team deciding that the way to cater to a female audience is to tell them that they don't know as much as their male counterparts.
I realized that this program was part of a press release that I received from the Dodgers back on May 9, 2009. I hadn't read it because I saw Mark Sweeney's name and could go no further. But I searched my email trash and found the release so that I could learn more about it, and now I really wish I had paid better attention before. Turns out these broadcasts are part of "DodgersWIN (Women's Initiatives Network)," which, according to the release, is a "network of initiatives to bring women closer to the game and to bring the game closer to their lifestyles."
Ugh! That is such horseshit! If a woman doesn't like baseball, then she doesn't like baseball. Same goes for men. Rick Reilly thinks baseball is really boring, according to his latest column, so why don't the Dodgers focus on bringing the game closer to him and his lifestyle? I have a real problem with this pandering to women as though they (we) are incapable of learning the game (if they don't already know it) through an "extra special" broadcast made just for them. The implication here is that all women are the same, so Jamie McCourt (who created this "DodgerWIN" thing) is sure to know exactly what we all need.
Bruce Paine just left a comment on the other post, in which he tells me that it's not shocking that baseball would pander to women like this. He's right, of course. It shouldn't shock me, but it does. I think it's just the overt way in which the Dodgers are saying, "Here, ladies, this little broadcast is for you" that freaks me out. I can almost see Frank McCourt winking as he tells Jamie she's free to have her little side project. And the fact that this is run by a woman and handled, in part, by a woman (Zelasko), makes it all the more shocking. We're not dealing with subtle sexism here. This is pat you on the ass, send you off to get the coffee while the men talk kind of sexism.
I told two other people about this tonight, both of them women, and before I could even finish my sentence, both of them were groaning. One of them is my fiancé, who loves baseball. The other is my friend Cate, who doesn't really care about the sport one way or another. In theory, the Dodgers think they can win Cate over by having Jeanne Zelasko explain things in a sensitive matter that Cate's extra "X" chromosome will be sure to understand. I will tell you right now that Cate (and many, many others like her) will not be won over by such a gesture.
What do the rest of my (predominantly male) readers think? I'm unlikely to agree with you if you think I'm overreacting, but I'd like to hear what you have to say anyway.