Best Sports Blog San Francisco 2005 -
Run out of Sacramento by Tyler Bleszinski, a former sportswriter, and reportedly inspired by the political blog Daily Kos, Athletics Nation is the essence of blogging ascendant, sports or otherwise. "I often think I should've called the site AthletiholicsAnonymous.com," Bleszinski writes in his "manifesto." "This Web log is my therapy. You are my support group." It's far more than that, however. Since starting the site in November 2003, Bleszinski has become one of the most astute observers of the A's -- more so than most of the folks drawing paychecks from the Bay Area's daily newspapers. His lengthy interviews with A's GM Billy Beane are full of frank, revealing insights not found in the sports pages (who knew that Beane once urged the A's to draft Ariel Prieto over superstar Todd Helton?), and he routinely posts Q&As with some of the more inconspicuous members of the front office who nonetheless form the synapses of the organization. "You have a vehicle that's trying to understand what we're doing," Beane told Bleszinski in a recent interview. "The world of a Web log will lend itself to a lot of investigation. And you will often stumble across the answer more than someone who has to write in two hours to meet deadline just to make sure something is out in the paper the next day."