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Beth Mowins Makes Chicago Cubs Debut On Marquee Sports Network

“As the camera panned the stadium to start the broadcast, it zoomed in on a father and daughter with a “Welcome Beth” sign.”

Brandon Contes

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Trailblazing broadcaster Beth Mowins made her first appearance as play-by-play voice for the Chicago Cubs on the Marquee Sports Network over the weekend. 

During the offseason, Mowins was named part of the Cubs rotating cast of announcers who will fill-in for the team’s lead play-by-play voice Boog Sciambi this year. And on Saturday, not only was it her first appearance in the Cubs broadcast booth, but it was the first time in franchise history that they had a female play-by-play voice. 

As the camera panned the stadium to start the broadcast, it zoomed in on a father and daughter with a “Welcome Beth” sign. 

“Oh, that’s very sweet,” Mowins said when she saw the sign. “Thank you so much. Looking forward to being part of the Marquee team this year, as we get set for the Chicago Cubs and the Colorado Rockies.”

Not lost on the historic moment over the weekend is the fact that Mowins has been a groundbreaking sportscaster throughout her career, helping to inspire women young and old.

“Having two little girls, it’s a big deal,” said Brandon Bajema, the father holding the ‘Welcome Beth’ sign. “I want them to feel like they can be a part of anything or do anything that they want to do. So, we’re excited.”

Mowins joined ESPN in 1994, where she’s called the Women’s College World Series for over 20 years. In 2017, Mowins became the second female play-by-play voice in NFL history, and the first to call a nationally televised game, doing so Monday Night Football matchup between the Chargers and Broncos. 

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Connor Onion to Make MLB Broadcasting Debut Saturday

“Just wanted to take some time to say thank you to some of you on here that have watched, listened and supported. Can’t wait to have some fun on Saturday. Hope you can come hang with me, AJ and Ken.”

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Photo of Connor Onion and a logo of MLB on FS1
Courtesy: Connon Onion X Account

Congratulations go out to Big Ten Network and ESPN broadcaster Connor Onion who will be making his MLB broadcasting debut on Saturday when he calls the Rangers-Astros game which will be carried by FS1 at 4 p.m. Onion posted a video announcing the assignment on his X account as he was walking through the airport to head to Houston.

“Good morning, I am off to Houston today,” he said. “Got an exciting opportunity to make my Major League Baseball broadcasting debut calling Rangers-Astros Saturday afternoon for FOX with AJ Pierzynski and Ken Rosenthal. This is obviously something I have been thinking about for a long, long time but wouldn’t have happened without so many people from my first job in Quad Cities to school at Ball State and Southern Illinois after that. So much help and so much support along the way. Just wanted to take some time to say thank you to some of you on here that have watched, listened and supported. Can’t wait to have some fun on Saturday. Hope you can come hang with me, AJ and Ken.”

Onion debuted for the Big 10 Network in 2021 and has called college football, basketball, baseball and volleyball for the network. He has also done college football, basketball and baseball for ESPN.

Many may recall the women’s volleyball match between Nebraska and Omaha which took place in front of over 92,000 at Nebraska’s Memorial Stadium last August. Onion was on the call for that match and was profiled by The Athletic’s Richard Deitsch.

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NASCAR Xfinity Series Moves to CW Earlier Than Planned

“We can’t wait to give racing fans an early preview of all the exciting action the NASCAR Xfinity Series has to offer on The CW and we look forward to establishing the network as a new destination for live motorsports.”

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Graphic for the NASCAR XFinity broadcasts on the CW Network

NASCAR and the CW Network have announced the network will be the exclusive broadcast home for the final eight races of the 2024 NASCAR Xfinity Series this fall. Originally, the CW Network was not supposed to start airing the races until 2025.

Live coverage will now begin on Friday, September 20 with the NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway. The series continues through the fall with the final seven Xfinity Playoff races of the season, culminating in the Xfinity Series Championship from Phoenix Raceway on Saturday, November 9.

All of the races will be produced by NBC Sports, with Rick Allen serving as lead race announcer alongside analysts Jeff Burton and Steve Letarte, and NBC Sports’ Vice President of Motorsports Jeff Behnke overseeing production.

“As The CW prepares to be the new broadcast home of the NASCAR Xfinity Series in 2025, we want to thank our partners at the league and at NBC Sports for welcoming the network into the NASCAR broadcast family and for the early opportunity to showcase these thrilling final eight Xfinity Series races of the season,” said Dennis Miller, President, The CW Network. “We can’t wait to give racing fans an early preview of all the exciting action the NASCAR Xfinity Series has to offer on The CW and we look forward to establishing the network as a new destination for live motorsports.”

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Report: MLB Nearing Deal with Unknown Platform to Resume Sunday Morning Game Broadcasts

“Our initiative with Peacock was a valuable experience with a collaborative partner in our ongoing effort to explore a variety of streaming offerings for our fans as their consumption habits continue to evolve.”

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Major League Baseball
Courtesy: Major League Baseball

Ahead of the Major League Baseball season, the league and Comcast had yet to reach a deal regarding Sunday morning baseball games. Peacock, the OTT streaming platform for the company, broadcast these games for the last two seasons, which equated to 19 such contests last year. Andrew Marchand of The Athletic reports that there is interest from Comcast and NBC in a deal to resume airing these games but for less than $30 million per year, the rate it had paid over the last two years. MLB is reportedly nearing an agreement with another platform to broadcast the Sunday morning baseball games.

“Our initiative with Peacock was a valuable experience with a collaborative partner in our ongoing effort to explore a variety of streaming offerings for our fans as their consumption habits continue to evolve,” a Major League Baseball spokesperson said in a statement to The Athletic.

The Sunday morning MLB games on Peacock started either at 11:35 a.m. or 12:05 p.m. EST and included a play-by-play announcer and an analyst who had familiarity with the teams playing in the game. Other MLB games taking place on Sundays were prohibited to begin earlier than 1:30 p.m. EST, granting the platform a window. Two weekly Friday night MLB games during the regular season are exclusively broadcast on Apple TV+ as part of a seven-year contract between the two entities worth a reported $85 million per season.

Peacock recently served as the exclusive home of an NFL Wild Card game between the Kansas City Chiefs and Miami Dolphins. The coldest game on record from GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium drew an average minute audience of 23 million viewers, rendering it the most-streamed event in U.S. history. Moreover, the playoff game was attributed to 30% of worldwide internet usage for the day. The platform reportedly paid $110 million for the rights to the game, part of a weekend featuring three NFL Wild Card contests.

Amazon Prime Video is reportedly set to exclusively stream an NFL Wild Card game next year, continuing to expand its portfolio of games that includes Thursday Night Football and an exclusive Black Friday Football game.

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