The St. Louis Cardinals took part in the expanded wild card playoffs this past weekend, and despite a disappointing result, the team’s TV play-by-play broadcaster got to do something he never had the chance to in his 24 years in the booth.
Dan McLaughlin is synonymous with Cardinals baseball on Bally Sports Midwest. But despite the Cardinals having a quality run of playoff appearances in his tenure, McLaughlin never got to call St. Louis postseason games.
That changed on Friday in Game 1 of the Cardinals’ wild card series against the Phillies, when McLaughlin joined the Cardinals Radio Network to call play-by-play alongside John Rooney.
“I have had multiple opportunities to leave for national TV work, other organizations, do other sports but, I’ve turned those down,” McLaughlin told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “Why? Maybe, one day I’d get a chance to call a Cardinals playoff game. This is my dream come true to do playoff baseball.”
McLaughlin expressed his gratitude to Rooney, who completed his first regular season calling Cards games on the radio this year.
“It needs to be pointed out that he never had to do this. Ever,” he said. “This is a selfish business and he came to me with a selfless act. Total class. I’ll never forget it.”
Dan did have to make a slight adjustment when his turn in the booth came on Friday afternoon and Saturday night. McLaughlin has long been benefitted by being on the TV side of the game broadcasts. But making calls on the radio require a bit more attention to detail.
“I have to describe what I see,” he said. “The situations, the score, the shift and everything else that goes with it. Most importantly? Have fun. If we have fun, the listeners will have fun.”
Jordan Bondurant is a features reporter for Barrett Sports Media. He’s a multimedia journalist and communicator who works at the Virginia State Corporation Commission in Richmond. Jordan also contributes occasional coverage of the Washington Capitals for the blog NoVa Caps. His prior media experiences include working for the Richmond Times-Dispatch, the Danville Register & Bee, Virginia Lawyers Weekly, WRIC-TV 8News and Audacy Richmond. He can be reached by email at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter @J__Bondurant.
Desmond Howard: Paul Finebaum Now a ‘Cariacture’
“You can’t take anything he says seriously. You just can’t. It’s like they march him out there, they pull the string in his back, and he just starts spewing negative things…”
Both Desmond Howard and Paul Finebaum have been vocal on their stances about the Michigan sign-stealing allegations. However, Howard has shared his feelings about Finebaum, and they are not positive.
During an appearance on The Rich Eisen Show, the ESPN college football analyst had harsh criticism for Finebaum.
“Paul Finebaum is a caricature of a caricature of Paul Finebaum,”Howard said. “That’s what he is right now. You can’t take anything he says seriously. You just can’t. It’s like they march him out there, they pull the string in his back, and he just starts spewing negative things about Michigan. When a person does that repeatedly and you just know his shtick, you can’t take him seriously.”
Howard hasn’t been shy about defending his alma mater through the scandal. During an episode of College GameDay, the former Heisman Trophy winner told colleague Pete Thamel to “put your big boy pants on” after the reporter moved his segments on the program to inside Michigan Stadium after threats from Michigan fans were deemed credible enough that he was in danger.
Joe Castiglione: I Accidentally Hung Up on the Hall of Fame When They Called Me
“It was the most agonizing 40 to 60 seconds for that call to come back that I’ve ever experienced.”
Longtime Boston Red Sox radio voice Joe Castiglione was announced as the winner of the 2024 Ford C. Frick Award Wednesday, which is awarded by the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum to one broadcaster each year for excellence in the broadcasting medium.
However, the call from the Hall to Castiglione didn’t exactly go off without a hitch.
During an appearance on WEEI’s Gresh and Fauria after the announcement was made, Castiglione revealed he accidentally hung up on the Baseball Hall of Fame.
“They said, If you are the winner, we’ll call between 10:30 and 12 o’clock on the day of the announcement. If you’re not selected, you will hear nothing’,” Castiglione said. “And this morning, I was watching the clock. I tried to ride the exercise bike and stretch, and all those kinds of things to sort of divert attention. And then at 11:21, that call came in.
“People that know me know I’m a technical putz. And when the phone rang, I saw the 607 area code and knew it was Cooperstown. I figured that was the good news. But instead of hitting the speaker button so my family could hear it, I hit the red button that hung up on the call.”
As Gresh and Fauria laughed uproariously, Joe Castiglione explained the torture of the moment.
“It was the most agonizing 40 to 60 seconds for that call to come back that I’ve ever experienced,” he said.
Mike Stone on Streaming Services: ‘It’s All About Money’
“…The problem I have is to not be able to watch your local teams without multiple streaming platforms.”
On Tuesday night, there was frustration abound for some Detroit sports fans as they tried to watch Michigan Wolverines and Michigan State Spartans basketball games, along with the Detroit Red Wings taking the ice in the NHL. Although the basketball teams lost, the Red Wings were able to solidify a 5-3 victory over the Buffalo Sabres, moving their record to 6-1 since playing two games in Stockholm, Sweden as part of the league’s International Series. Mike Stone was watching, but with an additional cost incurred.
All of these games were on streaming services and required consumers to have a subscription in order to watch the action. Since Mike Stone subscribes to the Disney bundle, he is able to access Disney+, Hulu and ESPN+, giving him the ability to watch Tuesday night’s Red Wings game. The only reason he has Peacock is because it comes with his subscription to Xfinity. Moreover, he shared that he is aware that people just paid for Peacock to watch Michigan and Michigan State football games during the college season.
“Coming up, there’s going to be some NFL playoffs – there’s going to be a Wild Card game that’s going to be on Peacock,” Mike Stone said Wednesday morning on 97.1 The Ticket. “Are you willing to pay for a Wild Card game? If the Lions are in it, they’ll show it locally but whatever.”
“I’m kind of at my limit on this seriously,” Stoney and Jansen with Heather executive producer Tom Millikan replied. “Last night, you couldn’t watch any of the teams play unless you had streaming platforms. I’ve accepted Amazon Thursday Night Football; it’s become a routine…. This has all turned into you end up paying more for all this garbage than what you paid for cable.”
Stone agreed with this point, questioning whether cutting the cord has truly saved consumers any money. Co-host Jon Jansen added that people still pay for their home internet using cable providers, another way for these outlets to obtain revenue.
“The only thing cable has right now is live sports,” producer Greg Hargrave said. “That’s the only thing they have over streaming services.”
Jansen proceeded to recollect on an experience of trying to sign up for NFL Sunday Ticket without purchasing a subscription to YouTube TV and how it was complicated enough that he gave up after 20 minutes of trying. While he does not want to watch every single game around the NFL, he wants to have the flexibility to choose to watch a contest when he wants to. Looking at the YouTube TV iteration of the out-of-market broadcast package, Stone has heard that people like it better because of the options it provides users.
“But that’s a product that you paid for before; it was just on satellites instead,” Tom Millikan said. “….The problem I have is to not be able to watch your local teams without multiple streaming platforms; [it] is just a turnoff and I’m not doing it.”
Under the new media rights deal the NFL began this year with its broadcast partners, Millikan feels that the diffusion of coverage is ultimately rendering increased profits. Furthermore, he wondered why Peacock was awarded a playoff game instead of Amazon, an inquiry to which Mike Stone replied that he did not pay enough money.
“It’s all about money,” Stone said. “It’s corporate America, baby!”
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