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 5:45am and 7:45am and again that same day on ATC at 4:45pm. It also airs Saturday at 6:35am and 9:35am.

Ways to Connect

Kelvin Kuo / AP Photo

The Seahawks host the San Francisco 49ers Sunday afternoon at CenturyLink Field.

Knkx sports commentator Art Thiel told 88.5’s Kirsten Kendrick the team has a good shot at winning despite having one glaring weakness.

Jessica Hill / AP Photo


The WNBA playoffs open Wednesday night with a pair of games showcasing the league's revamped playoff format. First up will be the single-elimination games as fifth-seeded Indiana hosts No. 8 Phoenix and seventh-seed Seattle is at No. 6 Atlanta. Sports Commentator Art Thiel says the new "one-and-done" format could actually be a boon for the Seattle Storm.

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

The Mariners host the Houston Astros at Safeco Field this weekend as the pennant race heats up. The Mariners have won eight games in a row, including all of the games on their latest road trip.

Sports commentator Art Thiel says it's a very exciting time for the team and their fans.

Stephen Brashear / AP Photo

The Seahawks open the regular season at home on Sunday afternoon against the Miami Dolphins.

Knkx sports commentator Art Thiel talked with 88.5's Kirsten Kendrick about the pros and cons for the team this year.

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

The University of Washington football team begins its 2016 season this weekend. The Huskies host Rutgers Saturday at Alaska Airlines Field at Husky Stadium in Seattle.

Sports commentator Art Thiel tells 88.5’s Kirsten Kendrick the Huskies are expected to do great things this season.

Eraldo Peres / AP Photo

Seattle Reign and U.S. Women’s Soccer goalie Hope Solo has been suspended by U.S. Soccer for six months. This follows controversial remarks she made after the U.S. lost to Sweden in a penalty shootout in the quarterfinals of the Olympics in Rio. 

Sports commentator Art Thiel tells KPLU’s Kirsten Kendrick the action against Solo is too little, too late. And he says it highlights an even bigger problem with the Olympic Games.

<Credit AP Photo/Danny Moloshok>

It’s a lot of fun to be a sports fan in Seattle right now. The Mariners are playing their best baseball of the season and have the potential to sneak into the playoffs for the first time in 15 years. The Seahawks are predicted to be one of the best teams in the NFL again this year, and Husky football may have their best team in years. So exactly how optimistic should Seattle sports fans allow themselves to be?

Tons Of Upside

Jessica Hill / AP Photo

The WNBA is on a break while the gold-medal-winning U.S. Women’s National Basketball Team defends its Olympic title in Rio. Two Seattle Storm players are on the roster: rookie Breanna Stewart and veteran Sue Bird.

Sports commentator Art Thiel talked with KPLU's Kirsten Kendrick about Team USA and the Storm’s season so far.

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

The Seattle Sounders host the LA Galaxy Sunday afternoon at CenturyLink Field.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel explains the nationally-televised match comes after a tumultuous week for the team. Coach Sigi Schmid was fired and a new Designated Player was acquired.

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

Ken Griffey Jr. will be the first player to be inducted as a Mariner into the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, NY, on Sunday.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says Griffey had a huge impact on and off the field in Seattle.

Mike Carlson / AP Photo

Seattle Reign and U.S. Women's National Soccer Team goalie Hope Solo have revealed some significant problems within the National Women’s Soccer League.

It’s the topic of this week’s conversation between sports commentator Art Thiel and KPLU’s Kirsten Kendrick.

Matt Slocum / AP Photo

The 2016 Summer Olympics are less than a month away. They begin August 5th in Rio de Janeiro.

Sports commentator Art Thiel and KPLU’s Kirsten Kendrick have the story of one local athlete who’s just earned the chance to shine on the world stage.

Paul Sancya / AP Photo

The Mariners dropped below .500 this week. They are now 36-37, after suffering their sixth loss in a row Thursday against the Detroit Tigers. This is happening after a very strong April and May.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel explains what’s going wrong, and why it’s not a surprise.

Gregory Bull / AP Photo

Former Mariner Ichiro Suzuki reached a significant milestone this week. It came with some controversy. But KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says it shouldn't have.

John Froschauer / AP Photo

Bellevue High School has the most successful football program in state history – winning 11 titles in the last 15 years. But many of those accomplishments are in jeopardy, because of a scandal that has now reached the punishment stage.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says it's a symptom of a much bigger problem.

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

 

The Seattle Sounders head into a two-week Major League Soccer break on a high note. They beat D.C. United on Wednesday, giving them their first road win of the season and breaking a three-game losing streak.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says changes are coming soon that could help the Sounders turn their season around.

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

The Mariners host the Twins this weekend at Safeco Field. After two big wins this week and a highly successful road trip, the team has one of the best records in Major League Baseball.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel talks about why the team and its fans are in some unfamiliar territory.

David J. Phillip / AP Photo

Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett endeared himself to fans by commandeering a police bicycle and riding it around CenturyLink Field after the team’s dramatic win in the NFC championship game last year. He made headlines again this week, saying he’s not happy with his contract.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel agrees Bennett is not getting paid what he’s worth. But he says that’s not going to change.

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

The Mariners remain in first place in the American League West as they host the Angels this weekend at Safeco Field.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says a lot of factors have come together this season to give even the most skeptical fans some hope.

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

Sonics fans and supporters of a proposed arena in Seattle are trying to regroup after a big setback this week. The City Council voted 5-4 not to vacate a street needed for the project.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel talks about what happened and what might be next.

(AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File)

What makes sports rivalries so contentious, so impassioned and so much fun? KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says that it has a lot to do with proximity and stakes. While Seattle sports teams have often been accused of playing out of "Sound Alaska," Pacific Northwest teams still have managed to develop some consistent contention with other teams, especially if there is a lot on the line. 

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

Developer Chris Hansen’s proposed NBA and NHL arena in Seattle’s SoDo district passed a major milestone this week. But KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says the biggest obstacle remains: the NBA.

(AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

It might seem like a long way away from football season, but the University of Washington football team has taken the field for spring practice and will have their public spring scrimmage on April 23. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says that there is plenty to expect from the Huskies this season.   

Brandon Wade / AP Photo

The Mariners are hosting the Oakland Athletics this weekend in their first home series of 2016. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says the team’s first three games in Texas had some surprising highs and lows.

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

The University of Washington women’s basketball team takes on Syracuse Sunday in Indianapolis as part of the NCAA's Final Four.

It’s the first time the UW women have gotten this far in the tournament. And KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says it was a bit of a surprise this year.

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

The Seattle Sounders have a break from Major League Soccer play until April 2. But their best players aren’t getting a rest.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says that’s not helping the team, which is off to the worst start in franchise history.

Bill Chan / AP Photo

'A turning point.' That’s what KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel calls the NFL’s admission this week that football head injuries are a contributor to long-term health consequences for retired players.

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

The NFL’s free agency period is underway and, already, three well-known Seahawks players are gone.

It’s just part of the game and KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says it’s no reason for fans to get nervous.

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

The University of Washington men’s basketball team is looking ahead to the Pac-12 Tournament, after finishing their regular season this week with a win over Washington State.

But will the Huskies get a chance to experience March Madness this year? KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel is doubtful.

Charlie Riedel / AP Photo

Much like King Felix's new "do," newness is a big theme for the Mariners this season as they get ready to begin exhibition play next week in Arizona.

The team has a new general manager, a new manager, and a bunch of new players. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says that could mean the end of some old problems.

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