Back in October, long-time ESPN baseball writer Jerry Crasnick announced it was his final day at ESPN after 15 years. He’s now found a new role at the Major League Baseball Players Association. The union announced Friday that they’d promoted veteran staffer Chris Dahl (who’s been working with the MLBPA in a variety of roles for 22 years, most recently as the interim director of communications) to director of communications and hired Crasnick as senior advisor for player, agent and media relations:
— MLBPA Communications (@MLBPA_News) January 25, 2019
That release includes MLBPA executive director Tony Clark saying “I know first-hand, both as a player and now with the association, of the knowledge, diligence, and integrity Jerry has brought to every job he has held. He knows our sport—both the realities and the myths, the good and the bad—as well as anyone in the business. He is an exceptional communicator, an insightful observer, and a prolific writer.” Crasnick also did a Q+A with the union website, which included this commentary on what he hopes to accomplish in his new role:
I covered Tony Clark as a player, and I’ve seen his passion and commitment to doing the best possible job of representing the players. Communications and fan outreach are a big part of that, and I’m looking forward to working with Chris Dahl to navigate the challenges of the Twitter/Instagram/instant information age. I gained an appreciation for the MLBPA’s mission watching Don Fehr and Michael Weiner in action, and I can’t forget how captivating it was to interview a 90-year-old Marvin Miller in his New York apartment years ago. The Players Association has played a major role in the evolution of the game, and it’s exciting to be in the middle of the action as baseball history plays out. I think and hope the skills that I developed as a writer, reporter and interviewer will make for a natural transition.
This is one of the more notable post-reporting pivots we’ve seen in a while, but Crasnick’s experience should certainly help him with this new role. We’ll see what he does with the MLBPA.