Lee Hammer is the Opps/GM/PD at KNBR -responsible for on-air content and client relations--including the SF Giants, but in reality, Giants President, front man, Larry Baer might as well be in that position: Baer virtually runs KNBR during baseball season and even when there's no baseball or if baseball conflicts with other sports, (hello, Warriors!)
Baer is the most powerful man in San Francisco --and that's including the mayor and Willie Brown.
Baer could have won the SF mayoral race had he wanted to run, he holds such significant power in city circles, social circles, broadcast circles --(like Cumulus, KNBR, KGO, etc) but Baer had no interest in running. He's perfectly happy doing his duties as Giants' front man as well he should be.
Baer saved baseball for SF and you have to give him credit for that. It was Baer who was able to get high-influence people like Walter Shorenstein, Charles Johnson, Peter MacGowan, and the like on board --the money men, really, to pave the way to create the waterfront ballpark and make the Giants the force they are, on and off the field. Nobody disputes the fact that Baer runs the town; Baer is the point man for many civic issues, land deals involving Giants enterprises, and a plethora of insider deals that few people know about; it's OK with the natives, for the most part, because the Giants are the biggest entity in San Francisco and beyond.
It's one thing to control KNBR; to insist that a spring training game take president over a Warriors' playoff game because it's in the contract and even though it looks ridiculous and plays a part in the Warriors telling KNBR and Cumulus to screw you guys, in essence, Baer has the juice to get away with it whether or not Lee Hammer or some white guy in a suit in Atlanta care.
Baer can pretty much do as he pleases...and frankly, KNBR is only a teensy part of the mosaic --there's a gargantuan tapestry here and Baer wields his sword of authority and influence like Springsteen during a 4th-song encore. Good luck trying to stop those forces. Only Springsteen doesn't have his hand in an area's political fortress, doesn't pick and choose who gets favorites and who doesn't; isn't involved in some of the more intricate inner dealings that affect a city and its people. There's a lot on the menu here.
Of course, you won't read or see anything about all of this in the local SF Chronicle because the Chronicle long ago dissed investigative reporting and besides, Baer and the Giants are a good client--why dig deep when you have such a wonderful relationship. Ditto too the Bay Area/SF/SJ TV stations that too have a cozy set-up with the Giants and Larry even if there's some smoke at the front of the tunnel.
To be continued...