Of fledgling afternoon sports yackster Greg Marotta (above), the New York Post’s Phil Mushnick gushes “he’s a sharp guy, slightly cynical, inquisitive, sports smart, street-smart, engaging. If he can speak as naturally into a microphone as he does into a telephone, this could be the start of something big.”  Something tells me Phil’s not gonna be confused with a commercial radio program director anytime soon.

Marotta has purchased 10 hours of time per week on WVNJ, 1160-AM, 3-5 p.m., Monday through Friday. WVNJ has a strong reach – New York City, North Jersey, Long Island, Westchester, Rockland and through WVNJ.com.

Marotta, often told that he’s “a natural” to host a sports radio show, is going to give it a shot. He’s all-in. Starting tomorrow at 3 p.m., Marotta hosts “The Natural.”

Don’t anticipate any “guy talk” designed to entertain idiots. Marotta’s 52, and, as his own boss and soloist, he doesn’t have to adhere to the dictates of radio consultants who demand two minutes of crotch talk for every two minutes of sports talk. He certainly can provide a wise-guy approach on matters, but with the urban accent on wise.

“Calling a pitcher a gutless dog for losing a big game may pass for good, strong radio, but that’s not taking a firm position, that’s blowhard radio,” he said. “What passes for big-time sports-talk radio is mostly terrible. I have to give this a shot.”

I’m just curious — and surely Mushnick listens to enough sports radio to answer this question — exactly how many minutes per week of “crotch talk” are supplied by the likes of Mike Francesca, Michael Kay or Joe Beningno-Gazingo?  And how have I been lucky enough to have never heard any of them?