Saturday, October 09, 2004

Every Single Pitch? Nah...

I was just listening to the Mad Dog. Someone called in and mentioned the Riviera, which is that Red Sox bar in Manhattan. The guy said it was like being in Boston there last night. Mad Dog asked where it was, and the guy gave the address. (West 4th St & 7th Ave.) Then Dog said, "I'll have to look into that!" since he's so anti-yankees. So now I feel like this Riviera thing is gonna be more popular than ever. I'm glad I got to see some games there before "everybody" knew about it. I might go to an ALCS game there.

Also, there were yankee fans calling up, saying how the Red Sox have "never" beaten the yankees. Fortunately, Mad Dog said what I always say to these retarded people. Well at least he started to. He said, Well, they beat you in '75, I guess you don't want to count that because it wasn't head to head. The cretin on the phone said, "Chris, Bawstin neva beat da yaaankees!" Then, Mad Dog basically agreed and said the Sox never beat the yanks head to head. (Which is still a ridiculous statement.) But at least he got the idea through to yankee fans. Maybe some of the really dumb ones didn't realize that the Red Sox have actually won the division as well as the pennant several times since 1918. But I've written about all this before, and for much longer rants. Search for 'em if you like.

You'd think that the dynasty that is ESPN would be able to find some people who know how to properly broadcast a baseball game. First of all, Chris Berman is not a play-by-play announcer. He'd tell you that. I've always liked the guy for what he is, but he just doesn't have a clue how to announce. He forgot how many outs there were a few times. And every time the home plate ump would call a guy out "on the swing," we at home would know immediately, as we'd see it on the screen. Berman, however, must have immediately looked to the base umpire, waiting for an appeal that was never asked for, since the batter had already been called out. Once he said, "And after an eternity, he's finally called out on the appeal!" But there was no appeal, as the home plate ump had called the guy out immediately (not after an eternity). And calling Kevin Millar "Mattingly" was funny--the first time. You just shouldn't do it over and over, let alone over a period of days. Again, I like Berman, I think he's funny, and none of these wanna-be comedian sports anchors has ever been as funny as he's always been. But I think he should stay in the studio. One more thing. Sometimes a play would happen, the camera would miss something, and Berman wouldn't tell us what happened, assuming we'd seen it. Like that Ortiz double that got past Guerrero, I thought two runs had scored. They never showed the second runner, and Berman didn't say anything about him. Terrible.

As for the coverage: Even as Ortiz was rounding the bases with the series-winning homer, ESPN was pissing me off, in the middle of my jubilance. Ortiz is between third and home, and--cut to--Scosia in the dugout, making that same stupid face he made the whole series. Then they get back to Ortiz just before he jumps into the pile at home plate--but two seconds later, cut to close up shots of eight different Angel players, while the nation misses the Red Sox celebration.

These networks are so concerned with putting together an historical art piece, it causes fans to miss what's taking place in the game. The 'behind the plate' angle of a pitch just annoys me to no end. Once they did it, and the Angel batter hit a ball to the left side--and that's all we could tell. It could've been a pop to short, or a home run, or even an optical illusion where the ball was actually fouled back. Turned out it was off the wall for a double off of Foulke, putting the potential go ahead run on third. And there I was, feeling like I missed the play. Don't they know that we're used to the center field camera angle on pitches? And that it's really hard to suddenly adjust to a different angle? And if the pitch isn't swung at, you have NO clue as to where it was in relation to the strike zone. And, of course, I'm superstitious enough so that I feel like if I "miss" a pitch, I somehow missed out on rooting for good stuff to happen, which in turn, causes there to be a greater chance of something bad happening. And sure enough, whenever they'd show the "bad" angle, something bad would happen.

They also need to know that we don't give a crap about seeing the runner take off for second, especially if it causes us to MISS THE PITCH. Can't they just tell us he's going? Isn't that what the announcers are there for? And then with all this concern about the stupid runner, sometimes they still miss a throw over to first. And you'd think they'd be able to figure out the whole "when to go to commercial and when to restart play again" thing.

It's the playoffs. Their one job should be to show us the game. Is this too much to ask?

By the way, didn't you think Stankonia was trying to pull a Joe Torre by having Bronson pitch to one batter in the seventh, then taking him out so he could get an ovation? (which ESPN cut off just as the crowd started cheering to cut to a local Greentree Toyota commercial.) I thought he should have just left him in until he actually started pitching badly, which wasn't even gonna happen.


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Location: Rhode Island, United States