Art Thiel

Sports Commentator

Art Thiel is a co-founder and writer for the rising sports website Sportspress Northwest. In 2003 Thiel wrote the definitive book about the Seattle Mariners, “Out of Left Field,”  which became a regional bestseller. In 2009, along with Steve Rudman and KJR 950 afternoon host Mike Gastineau, Thiel authored “The Great Book of Seattle Sports Lists,” a cross between historylink.org and Mad Magazine that has become mandatory reading for any sports fan who has an indoor bathroom.

A graduate of Pacific Lutheran University as well as two dead papers and a live one, the News Tribune of Tacoma, he has become a fan of entrepreneurial online journalism because it allows him to continue a lifelong passion to take the English language to places it rarely visits willingly, and does not involve the cleaning of kennels or stables.

Kirsten Kendrick's Q. & A. with Thiel can be heard every Friday during M.E. at 5:35am and 7:35am and again that same day on ATC at 4:45pm. It also airs Saturday at 6:35am and 9:35am.

Ways To Connect

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

The end of Thanksgiving signals another holiday tradition in the Northwest: the annual football matchup between the University of Washington and Washington State University. The Apple Cup will take place Saturday night in Pullman.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says a win means more than just bragging rights.

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

The Seattle Sounders and LA Galaxy meet Sunday in California for the first of two games in Major League Soccer’s Western Conference Finals.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says this series is not the MLS Championship, but it might as well be.

Stephen Brashear / AP Photo

The Seahawks' schedule is about to get tougher, and the timing couldn’t be worse. They learned this week that they’ll be without two key players for the rest of the season.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel said it’s bad news as the team heads to Kansas City to face the Chiefs on Sunday.

Art also says Mariners pitcher Felix Hernandez narrowly losing his bid for a second Cy Young Award was "a little bit unfair."

David Zalubowski / AP Photo

It hasn’t been a good week for the University of Washington or Washington State University football teams. They both lost key players, and for different reasons.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says the Huskies dismissed a player who had a reputation as a troublemaker.

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

The No. 1 Seattle Sounders start their playoff run this weekend. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says this could be the year the Sounders win it all and make history in the process.

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

The spotlight will be on the Seahawks once again this weekend as the team tries to bounce back from all the controversy that's been swirling around them recently. They play the Carolina Panthers in Charlotte on Sunday.

The Seahawks have been under intense scrutiny following back-to-back losses and the shocking trade of star receiver Percy Harvin.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says this is what happens when a defending Super Bowl champion makes a controversial mid-season trade that really amounts to a firing.

Ben Margot / AP Photo

The unranked Washington Huskies take on the No. 9 Oregon Ducks Saturday in Eugene. The Ducks are heavily favored to win, as they have the past 10 years.

But the Huskies may be able to turn their luck around this year with the help of a man known as “the mad scientist.”

Alex Brandon / AP Photo

The 3-1 Seahawks host the 4-1 Cowboys on Sunday at CenturyLink Field. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel expects another strong showing from quarterback Russell Wilson, the man who's won the last two games with his hands and his feet. 

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

The Mariners may not have made the playoffs, but they made a lot of fans proud by sweeping the best team in baseball over the weekend. They did it with a stellar showing from Felix Hernandez in the final game of the season. It was a performance that could earn The King another pitching crown.

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

After four wins in non-conference games, the Pac-12 season begins Saturday for the University of Washington football team. The unranked Huskies take on No. 16 Stanford at home. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says it should be a lively matchup.

Michael Perez / AP Photo

The Seattle Sounders won their fourth U.S. Open Cup championship this week. They also have the best record in Major League Soccer right now. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says the Sounders’ success has come despite several distractions.

David Goldman / AP Photo

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell remains under fire for his handling of the Ray Rice controversy. A lot of people are calling for his resignation, including KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel. 

What Did The NFL Know And When?

Scott Eklund / AP Photo

The Seahawks start their season with a bang, or should we say a boom. The defending Super Bowl champions trounced the Green Bay Packers Thursday night by a score of 36-16 at CenturyLink Field in Seattle.

The Hawks’ notorious Legion of Boom defense certainly showed its stuff. But KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says the offense was on fire as well.

AP Photo

The Mariners have made some solid choices and taken some big chances this year. It all appears to be paying off as they continue to be in the wild card playoff hunt.

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

The University of Washington football team opens its 2014 season on Aug. 30 in Hawaii. The Huskies are coming off a successful, 9-4 season last year, and they have a promising new coach. But they also have a bit of a quarterback controversy, says sports commentator Art Thiel.

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

The Mariners are in a battle with the Detroit Tigers for the second wild card playoff spot in the American League. The two teams play each other in a big weekend series in Detroit.

Two football players recently apologized for incidents that involved violence against women. But KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel wants more from both the players and the organizations that punished them for their actions.

"It was the words of the players that bothered me because they never explained why and how, and what they did," Art said. "Until they do that, you can't own it."

Justin Steyer / KPLU

The Seahawks are back at training camp this weekend in Renton. Fans, meanwhile, are looking ahead to the season with a big question on their minds: Can the team defend its championship?

“I think they’re in good position to do it, but it’s really hard,” said KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel.

John Shearer / Invision/AP Photo

From Seattle Sounders players shining at the World Cup to four Mariners in the All-Star game, to the Seahawks winning best team in sports at the ESPY Awards, Seattle sports fans have lots of reasons to smile lately.

And come September, says KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel, those smiles may turn into tears of joy.

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

Major League Baseball’s All-Star game is Tuesday in Minneapolis, with the winning league gaining home-field advantage in the World Series. Three Mariners will play for the American League: All-Star veterans Robinson Cano and Felix Hernandez and first-time All-Star Kyle Seager.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says the Mariners could use more players like Seager — homegrown and hitting the ball.

Pat Sullivan / AP Photo

The Mariners are going for their fifth series win in a row, taking on the White Sox in Chicago this weekend. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says the Mariners have been on fire recently, particularly at the plate.

Nelson Antoine / AP Photo

The U.S. Men's National Soccer Team will take on Belgium next Tuesday in the knockout round of the World Cup. The U.S. men weren't expected to get past the so-called Group of Death. But they did, and they did it with the help of Seattle's own DeAndre Yedlin, a World Cup rookie.

Ricardo Mazalan / AP Photo

World Cup fever seems to have swept much of the nation, especially after the U.S. beat Ghana 2-1 on Monday. The U.S. men’s national team is led by captain and Seattle Sounders star Clint Dempsey, who scored the first goal in the first 30 seconds of the match.

As U.S. prepares to take on Portugal on Sunday afternoon, sports commentator Art Thiel says the team's win has changed the expected narrative of the World Cup, or what Art calls "grand theater."

Ringo H.W. Chiu / AP Photo

The $2 billion sale of the L.A. Clippers to former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer is in limbo. Embattled Clippers owner Donald Sterling is moving forward with his lawsuit against the NBA, saying he was forced unfairly to sell the team after his racist comments were made public.

Sterling this week called the NBA "a band of hypocrites and bullies" and "despicable monsters." And the Associated Press reports he's now hired several private investigators to dig up dirt on NBA commissioners and his fellow owners.

Does the NBA have anything to hide? KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says there's a crack in the NBA's case.

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

The Seattle Sounders are on top of the Major League Soccer standings heading into Saturday’s game against the Fire in Chicago. Then they’re off for three weeks while the World Cup is played in Brazil.

Two Sounders players are on the men’s national team, which has taken them away from MLS play recently. But KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says the Sounders have sufficient depth on their team to handle it.

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

Former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has reportedly reached a deal to buy the Los Angeles Clippers for $2 billion. Sources told ESPN and other media that the agreement was signed Thursday night by the family trust of embattled owner Donald Sterling and has been sent to the NBA for final approval.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says it’s not good news for Seattle.

Blake Wile / Flickr

A recent visit by the head of the National Hockey League has people in Seattle once again talking about whether the NHL will beat the NBA to town. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says that's "score one" for the hockey execs.

Michael Conroy / AP Photo

The Seahawks are putting their new drafted and undrafted rookies to the test in a mini-camp this weekend in Renton. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says there are several standouts who could help the Seahawks be as good as they were last year.  

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

Seahawks star Richard Sherman is now the highest-paid cornerback in the NFL after signing a $57 million, four-year contract extension this week.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel doesn't question the amount of the salary, but wonders what it might do to Sherman's performance on the field.

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