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You Made the Call

August 30, 1992

KABC's Todd Donoho is either the worst sportscaster in town or one of the best. At least that's what TV Times readers say.

After The Times' Steve Harvey rated the local sportscasters, we asked you to name your most- and least-favorites. The anti-Donoho letters led the pack. At the same time, Donoho came in a close second, behind KCBS' Jim Hill, as readers' favorite sportscaster. Next in line were KNBC's Bret Lewis, KTLA's Ed Arnold and KNBC's Fred Roggin.

Though no one came near Donoho in "worst" letters, other contenders were Roggin and Hill.

The sports fans speak:

Jim Hill gives you the news straight and because he comes across as the buddy of the sports figure--and we assume he really knows the athlete personally--he gives credence to the story he is covering.

Cassie Gold, Los Angeles

*

We say "Take a Hike" to the Steve Harvey ranks. Come on, lighten up. These sports journalists all have one thing in common: The events of the day are all the same.

Therefore the diversity must come from the individual sportscaster's personality and his interpretation of the day. Let's face it, some sports days are anything but exciting. So what's left but trivia, nostalgia or slow-mo replays?

So let them throw bricks, sticks or stones. They all do a great job in their own way. Cast two votes for Todd Donoho, who seems to be one of the least affected by the glamour of the spotlight.

Bob Lipke and Dave Guenther, Santa Clarita

*

I have to agree wholeheartedly that Fred Roggin is the class among the bunch. He lets the viewer have fun without feeling like an idiot or him acting like one. Additionally, Fred actually knows sports! What a refreshing change from some of the other goons.

Todd Donoho has definitely got to go! His wing-tipped persona just doesn't say "sports" at all.

John V. Flores, Commerce

The Los Angeles sportscaster scene is a sad situation. Todd Donoho has actually made sports boring. Fred Roggin has absolutely no sense of humor. Stu Nahan and Jim Hill are the closest things L.A. has to being sports journalists (that is the object--journalism--isn't it?).

KCBS has the best in reserve ... Gil Stratton. He is a knowledgeable sports commentator with a sense of humor. Someone please give him a full-time job.

Arthur Lacher, North Hollywood

*

For sports knowledge, presentation and appearance, I believe Bret Lewis will someday be No. 1. I could like Fred Roggin if he didn't try to be funny and spread himself too thin. Jim Hill is overpaid even if they cut his salary by 100%. Todd Donoho is a joke. From the very first day I thought his father owned the station.

Louis E. Moore, Los Angeles

*

Fred Roggin the No. 1 sportscaster on L.A. TV? What a joke. If you enjoy pig races from Iowa and turkey-calling contests, then yes, Fred will show it to you. Sadly, for a hockey fan in L.A., the coverage is nearly zero except when they show the occasional fight, which is exactly what they don't need to show. The majority of L.A. sportscasters are highly overpaid for the superficial job they do. Thank you, but I'll stick to ESPN and Prime Ticket for my sports reports.

Andy Mobers, Torrance

*

Choosing the finest sportscaster in Los Angeles would have been simple a few months ago. Keith Olbermann was clearly the best.

Of those who remain, Bret Lewis is perhaps the front-runner with his unpretentious manner and wicked wit. Like Olbermann, Lewis is able to convey the ludicrous aspects of sports without diminishing the inherent dignity and drama.

Alan O'Brien, Alta Loma

*

I actually looked forward to KNBC shipping Fred Roggin to Barcelona so that Bret Lewis could anchor the sportscasts.

Angel Zobel Rodriguez, San Fernando

*

Missing from your article was any mention of Mark Steines from KCAL. His low-key approach is a refreshing change from the usual bellowing heard from most sports reporters.

John Todd, Los Angeles

*

In spite of his "out on a limb" antics, I find Tom Murray of KCAL to be refreshing, engaging, enthusiastic and knowledgeable.

Gary F. Traxler, Port Hueneme

*

I would like to offer some advice to Stu Nahan: Cheer up and enjoy your job--with all your mispronunciations of players' names and inverting teams when announcing scores, you're lucky to have a job.

Mike Hallam, Lake Forest

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