From a sports media standpoint, a somewhat uncomfortable side note to the news of Joe Morgan’s passing was acknowledging the website named after him that criticized his baseball commentary and many others whose analysis was viewed as outdated with the advent of advanced metrics and data.

Criticism of those old-school takes on baseball was the foundation of Fire Joe Morgan, created by a trio of bloggers eventually revealed to be acclaimed TV writers Mike Schur (The Office), Alan Yang (Parks and Recreation), and Dave King.

Morgan was outspoken against the use of statistics to determine game strategy, lineup decisions, and defensive alignments. And due largely to his prominent role as analyst on ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball telecasts, Morgan became an easy target for fans seeking more data-driven content in baseball commentary.

In light of Morgan’s death, does Schur regret naming his internet-famous baseball site after the Hall of Fame second baseman? Pablo Torre asked him that very question on a recent episode of the ESPN Daily podcast. (The conversation with Schur begins at the 25:44 mark.)

“Yeah, we always regretted that we named the site ‘Fire Joe Morgan’ because we didn’t want the guy to be fired, really,” said Schur. “It was a crass, sort of early internet version of making noise and banging on a pot and calling attention to yourself.”

Schur went on to explain that his frustration was based on Morgan misunderstanding a new way of understanding baseball that compelled greater appreciation of players like him who had high on-base percentages (leading the league four times) and excelled despite seeming physical shortcomings (a 5-foot-7 second baseman).

“Not only did he do everything right,” Schur continued, “he specifically did the things right that the modern analytic movement had shown to be the most valuable possible things you can do.

“He was just an incredible player in exactly the ways that the Moneyball era was beginning to point out, how undervalued guys like him actually were.”

Ultimately, in Schur’s view, Morgan’s broadcasting career hit its peak during a time when there was an ideological clash growing in baseball between traditional and newer perspectives of the sport.

You can listen to ESPN Daily and Torre’s interview with Schur at the ESPN Podcenter, in addition to Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and various other podcast apps.

About Ian Casselberry

Ian is a writer, editor, and podcaster. You can find his work at Awful Announcing and The Comeback. He's written for Sports Illustrated, Yahoo Sports, MLive, Bleacher Report, and SB Nation.