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.

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SPORTS WITH ART THIEL
5:24 am
Fri June 29, 2012

Mariners aren't living up to already low expectations

Seattle's Casper Wells slides into home to score the winning run last night against Boston. The Mariners won 1-0.
AP Photo/Elaine Thompson

The Seattle Mariners reach the halfway point of their season this weekend, and find themselves in last place. As KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel explains, the Mariners had low expectations at the beginning of the season, and have yet to live up to them.

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Sports with Art Thiel
9:00 pm
Thu June 21, 2012

Sounders hope to break winless streak in Portland rivalry match

Fightin' words: Sounders fans cheer during a match against the Portland Timbers May 14, 2011, in Seattle. The sign shown refers to an Oregon law that requires gas station attendants, rather than motorists, to pump gas.
Ted S. Warren AP Photo

The Seattle Sounders limp into Portland Sunday for a big rivalry match against the Timbers. They're experiencing their longest winless streak since their expansion year of 2009.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says the Sounders need an attitude adjustment if they hope to beat Portland and move one step closer to the coveted Cascadia Cup.

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Sports with Art Thiel
12:00 pm
Thu June 21, 2012

Preview: Sounders slump into Cascadia Cup rivalry with Timbers

Portland Timbers goalkeeper Troy Perkins leaps in the air at right after knocking away a shot by the Seattle Sounders in the second half of a match on May 14, 2011, in Seattle. The match ended in a 1-1 draw.
Ted S. Warren AP

The Seattle Sounders are winless in their last six Major League Soccer matches, playing to a 1-1 draw Wednesday night against Sporting Kansas City at CenturyLink Field in Seattle.

That's not the best record to bring into a heated regional rivalry with the Portland Timbers on Sunday, as both team vie for the coveted Cascadia Cup.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel will have more on this tomorrow morning at 5:35 and 7:35 on 88.5 KPLU. Check back here for a blog of our conversation.

Sports with Art Thiel
9:00 pm
Thu June 14, 2012

Seattle arena PR campaign, opposition intensifying

Supporters of the proposed NBA arena sign up at Thursday's rally in downtown Seattle.
Lindsay Lowe KPLU

The revelation of big local backers. A huge fan rally. A high-profile meeting with the commissioner of the NBA. It all happened this week as supporters of the Seattle arena proposal get ready for key city and county committee hearings next week.

The opposition is heating up as well.

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Sports with Art Thiel
12:00 pm
Thu June 14, 2012

Preview: A hit with fans, Seattle arena deal goes under council scrutiny next week

Investor Chris Hansen, right, shakes hands with Seattle SuperSonics supporters Kris "Sonics Guy" Brannon, center, and David Brown after a memorandum of understanding was signed in an effort to bring the NBA back to Seattle.
Elaine Thompson AP Photo

A planned rally for Sonics fans at 4 p.m. today in Occidental Park is perhaps taking on even more significance, with word this week that Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer and two members of the Nordstrom family are among the investors behind the plan to bring the Sonics back to Seattle with a proposed new arena.

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Sports with Art Thiel
9:00 pm
Thu June 7, 2012

Wrongly accused of rape, Seahawks give Brian Banks shot at dream

Brian Banks works out at Seahawks headquarters in Renton Thursday. Cleared of rape charges just two weeks ago, Banks, once a high school star in Long Beach, Calif., gets to pursue his NFL dream.
Corky Trewin AP Photo

Brian Banks is not a bitter man. He has a right to be - after serving five years in prison and five on probation for a rape he didn't commit. But he says he wants to focus on his future.

Banks was cleared of the charges just two weeks ago, after his accuser recanted her story. Now, the Seahawks are giving the former high school football standout a shot at his dream. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel was at Seahawks headquarters Thursday, where Banks tried out for the team.

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Sports with Art Thiel
9:00 pm
Thu May 31, 2012

Mariners savor big win in 'up and down' season

Tony Gutierrez AP Photo

The Mariners 21-8 victory over the Rangers this week is something to be celebrated. But KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says it's also an example of the extremes the team has experienced this season.

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Sports with Art Thiel
12:00 pm
Thu May 31, 2012

Preview: Young hitters shine for the Mariners, but is it enough?

Tony Gutierrez AP Photo

The Mariners routed the Texas Rangers last night 21-8. Justin Smoak hit two three-run homers against his former team and the Mariners had two eight-run innings. Jesus Montero homered among his three hits and drove in four runs. And Kyle Seager had four hits and two RBIs.

It was their second win in a row against the AL West-leading Rangers. And you can certainly say the Mariners have been "streaky" lately.

Sports with Art Thiel
9:00 pm
Thu May 24, 2012

Controversy surrounds latest Seahawks pick: Kellen Winslow Jr.

Bob Leverone AP File Photo

"Talented, but arrogant."

That's how KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel describes the player the Seahawks traded for this week.

Kellen Winslow Jr. is an outspoken tight end from Tampa Bay. And Seahawks coach Pete Carroll thinks he can 'fix him.'

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Sports with Art Thiel
12:00 pm
Thu May 24, 2012

Preview: Seahawks get another controversial player

Bob Leverone AP File Photo

Just a few weeks after their surprising selection of troubled defensive end Bruce Irvin in the first round of the NFL draft, the Seahawks have announced a deal with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for outspoken tight end Kellen Winslow Jr..

He's a talented player but has an extensive injury history and has often butted heads with his coaches.

Find out what KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel thinks about the deal tomorrow morning at 5:35 and 7:35 on 88.5 KPLU. Check back here for a blog of our conversation.

Sports with Art Thiel
9:00 pm
Thu May 17, 2012

Why Seattle arena deal should be given the green (and gold) light

Investor Chris Hansen, right, shakes hands with Seattle SuperSonics supporters Kris "Sonics Guy" Brannon, center, and David Brown on Wednesday, after a memorandum of understanding was signed in an effort to bring the NBA back to Seattle.
Elaine Thompson AP Photo

The proposal to build a new sports arena in Seattle is now open to public scrutiny now that the City of Seattle and King County have formalized their agreement with lead investor Chris Hansen.  The next step is to gain approval from the city and county councils.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel explains why he thinks the plan should move forward.

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Sports with Art Thiel
9:00 pm
Thu May 10, 2012

Seattle hosts U.S.-China game, becoming hub for women's hoops

Seattle Storm and U.S. Olympic star Sue Bird drives the ball during the U.S. women's basketball practice in 2009.
Jose Luis Magana AP Photo

The success of the Seattle Storm has led to some pretty high-profile women's basketball events being held in the city. One of them is Saturday night at KeyArena.

The U.S. Women's National team will play the Chinese Women's National team in an exhibition game at 7:30 p.m. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says this is a big deal for fans of women's basketball and for the city.

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Sports with Art Thiel
12:00 pm
Thu May 10, 2012

Preview: U.S. Women take on China; Storm gets ready for 2012

Guard Sue Bird, left, of the US Olympic women's basketball team dribbles around teammate Kara Lawson during practice in Stanford, Calif., Tuesday, July 29, 2008.
Marcio Jose Sanchez AP Photo

The U.S. Women’s National Basketball team will play a special exhibition game on Saturday night at KeyArena in Seattle against the Chinese Women’s National basketball team. Current Seattle Storm point guard Sue Bird and former Storm player Swin Cash will play for the U.S. team.

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Sports with Art Thiel
9:00 pm
Thu May 3, 2012

Junior Seau suicide sparks more questions about NFL head injuries

A San Diego Chargers football fan wears the uniform of Junior Seau as he stands in front of the team's headquarters on Wednesday - the day Seau was found dead in his home from an apparent suicide.
Gregory Bull AP Photo

Just days after the suicide of retired NFL star Junior Seau, a lot of people are wondering whether the head injuries he suffered on the field may have played a role in his death.

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Sports with Art Thiel
12:00 pm
Thu May 3, 2012

Preview: Junior Seau suicide related to hard-hitting NFL career?

A man wears a Junior Seau replica uniform in front of Seau's restaurant in San Diego. Former San Diego Chargers star Seau was found shot to death at his home Wednesday in what police said appeared to be a suicide.
Gregory Bull AP Photo

The tragic death of NFL star Junior Seau has raised some questions about whether the hard hits he was involved in on the field somehow contributed to his apparent suicide.

The body of the 43-year-old linebacker was found Wednesday. Authorities say he left a note, although the contents of the note have not been revealed. Police have confirmed that Seau was shot in the chest. Does that mean he wanted his brain to be preserved for research, similar to the wishes of another former player who recently killed himself?

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