Connect with us
Jim Cutler Demos

Sports Radio News

Bob Fescoe: Baseball Broadcasts Discuss ‘Ridiculous Nonsense’

“For one thing, most baseball broadcasts and broadcasters act like the athletes that we’re watching on the field are not people.”

Barrett Sports Media

Published

on

Bob Fescoe
Courtesy: C You in the Major Leagues Foundation

Major League Baseball continues to attain high attendance figures over the last several weeks as the summer begins and rule changes become part of the norm. Weekend attendance for the league averaged over 35,000 people and was the third consecutive weekend with at least 1.5 million fans. As the league continues to market its superstars and promulgate the astonishing plays on the field, fans unable to make it to the ballpark consume broadcasts from afar.

Many baseball broadcasts pride themselves on being conversational and establishing a rapport with the audience, a deviation from the broadcast vernacular form years past. Attracting and retaining the interest of younger generations requires broadcasters to be cognizant of cultural trends and find ways to modernize the game to appeal to all viewers. With the advent of alternate broadcasts – including Sunday Night Baseball with KayRod – considering the viewer is arguably more essential than ever before in order to compete for the mindshare of the audience.

Over the weekend, 610 SportsRadio KCSP morning show host Bob Fescoe listened to a variety of different baseball broadcasts from around the league. No matter what outlet he consumed, Fescoe noticed conversations centered around trivial, mundane topics leading him to grow somewhat agitated.

“Every broadcast I listened to yesterday had some of the most ridiculous stuff that I’ve ever heard in it,” Fescoe said. “For one thing, most baseball broadcasts and broadcasters act like the athletes that we’re watching on the field are not people – like they’re not human beings – and if they do something that’s genuinely human-related, we all lose our minds.”

In relation to that, a clip of Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw having a catch with his son in the Dodger Stadium outfield made the rounds on several broadcasts yesterday. Fescoe noticed how commentators were framing it as Kershaw pausing his long toss and sprinting drills to spend time with his son and acting like it was a big deal. Fescoe believes the clip garnered the sentiment of Kershaw being regarded as herculean or otherworldly when, in reality, it is something any ordinary human being interested in baseball would do.

From there, Fescoe spoke about his experience listening to Minnesota Twins radio color commentator Dan Gladden discuss the evolution of the sport. When one batter was at the plate during a potential hit-and-run scenario during the Twins 6-3 win over the Detroit Tigers, he made a remark about the vicissitudes in player demeanor in the modern game.

“I don’t know who was at bat; he says, ‘He’s the kind of guy that if you asked to hit and run, he won’t get mad at you,’” Fescoe recalled. “Wait a second; hang on a second here. A batter’s in the box; he gets a sign from his boss to do something. Is that a peek inside the mind of baseball players though that maybe managers are afraid to do certain things because a guy may get mad at him?”

Suzyn Waldman has been the color commentator for New York Yankees radio broadcasts with John Sterling since 2005, and she was the next broadcaster Fescoe turned his attention to yesterday. While listening to the Yankees do battle with the Rangers, Fescoe heard Waldman talking about Yankees first baseman Anthony Rizzo’s tagging speed. He began to wonder if statistics were available pertaining to the fielding metrics and assumed some broadcasts are simply beginning to make some things up.

To close out the day, he transitioned over to the Texas Rangers television broadcast, which was showing B-roll of the Empire State Building at the time.

“The announcer says, ‘That’s the Empire State Building. It used to be an iconic building,’ to which his color analyst goes, ‘It still is,’” Fescoe said. “What do you mean ‘used to be an iconic building’?”

Fescoe feels the nature of baseball broadcasts is starting to move away from the traditional aspects of the game and contain more palaver discourse regarding cavalier topics. There are certain established and credible broadcast booths around the league that can effortlessly weave entertainment and esoteric discussion into the course of a broadcast. Yet there are moments when it just simply does not work.

“Just listen to a baseball broadcast and you will hear some ridiculous nonsense,” Fescoe concluded, “and then when somebody does something human like Clayton Kershaw having a catch with his son and being a dad, we all lose our minds.”

Sign up for the BSM 8@8

The Top 8 Sports Media Stories of the Day, sent directly to your inbox, every morning at 8am ET.

Invalid email address
We promise not to spam you. You can unsubscribe at any time.

Sports Radio News

ESPN Beaver Dam to Carry University of Wisconsin Women’s Volleyball

“By adding UW Women’s Volleyball to our lineup of premier brands and teams, we ensure that fans across the state can experience every thrilling moment.”

Barrett Sports Media

Published

on

Logo for ESPN Beaver Dam and a photo of Wisconsin women's volleyball players
Photo Courtesy: University of Wisconsin Athletics

Good Karma Brands has announced that ESPN Beaver Dam will join 100.5 ESPN Madison and 620 WTMJ in Milwaukee as a broadcaster for all University of Wisconsin women’s volleyball games starting in the 2024-2025 season. This expansion will guarantee that fans all over Wisconsin get live broadcasts of one of the strongest volleyball teams in the country.

“We are excited to join the group of GKB stations to deliver all the action and excitement of UW Women’s Volleyball games to fans,” said Sheri Sackett, market manager for ESPN Beaver Dam in a release. “By adding UW Women’s Volleyball to our lineup of premier brands and teams, we ensure that fans across the state can experience every thrilling moment.”

The UW Women’s Volleyball team finished the 2023 season at No. 3 in the AVCA Poll after a strong performance in the NCAA Tournament that led them to the semifinals. The addition of ESPN Beaver Dam will greatly increase the team’s exposure and audience reach.

In addition to UW Women’s Volleyball, ESPN Beaver Dam is the home for the Milwaukee Brewers, the Milwaukee Bucks, the Green Bay Packers, the Wisconsin Badgers, and the Beaver Dam High School Golden Beavers.

Sign up for the BSM 8@8

The Top 8 Sports Media Stories of the Day, sent directly to your inbox, every morning at 8am ET.

Invalid email address
We promise not to spam you. You can unsubscribe at any time.
Continue Reading

Sports Radio News

Reggie Miller: If TNT Loses NBA Broadcasting Rights, ‘We’re Going to Go Out With a Bang’

“First of all let me say this – this could be retirement for all of us at Turner network next year.”

Barrett Sports Media

Published

on

Reggie Miller
Courtesy: John Nowak, Warner Bros. Discovery

The NBA is reportedly formalizing media rights contracts with The Walt Disney Company (ESPN/ABC), NBCUniversal and Amazon’s Prime Video as its new trio of partners. If Warner Bros. Discovery ends up losing broadcasting rights to the NBA, it would mark the first time that a Turner-owned network did not televise league games since the 1984-85 season on TBS. Earlier in the season, TNT Sports reached a multi-year renewal agreement with NBA Hall of Fame forward Reggie Miller to continue serving as one of its analysts on its NBA on TNT coverage.

Miller joined the company in 2005 following his retirement from the NBA after an 18-year career with the Indiana Pacers and has called over 650 national NBA regular season games and NBA Playoffs matchups, along with 14 NBA Conference Finals. Yet he could be looking at his final season as a part of NBA on TNT coverage should the company no longer broadcast NBA games.

While it has been reported that Inside the NBA studio analysts Charles Barkley, Shaquille O’Neal and Kenny “The Jet” Smith all have opt-out clauses in their contracts if the company no longer broadcasts the NBA, it is unknown if such a provision exists for Miller. Barkley has been a member of NBA on TNT coverage since 2000 and recently announced that next season will be his last on television no matter what happens. Dan Patrick asked Miller if he believed Barkley was genuine in his announcement following Game 4 of the NBA Finals.

“I don’t want to believe it,” Miller said on the Dan Patrick Show. “First of all let me say this – this could be retirement for all of us at Turner network next year.”

Within his retirement announcement, Barkley emphasized that no one should contact him for interviews and was done speaking on the matter. Over the last month, he had appeared on a variety of sports media programming and spoke candidly on the NBA media rights negotiations, his sentiments on how everything unfolded and the potential future of Inside the NBA. Patrick wanted to know if Miller himself had been informed about what is happening behind the scenes as it pertains to the future of the NBA on TNT.

“We are in the dark – we have no idea,” Miller said. “This is way above my pay grade. I’m hoping – I think our leadership is at the table from everything I’m hearing, again, which isn’t a lot, and I hope they’re having – two minutes left in the fourth [quarter] and they’re trying to pull out a win here. It would be nice.”

Throughout the negotiating process, there has been speculation regarding Barkley potentially joining another network if Warner Bros. Discovery lost rights to the NBA. As he revealed his retirement, he divulged that he had spoken with other networks but affirmed that he would never work elsewhere. Miller interpreted Barkley’s decision to reveal his future plans as a means of getting ahead of the story since his name has been circulating with several different possibilities. In fact, he has known Barkley for a long time and understands that he does things on his own accord.

“So if this is his last year – we’ve had conversations [where] I’m like, ‘Look dude, we’re going to go out with a bang,’” Miller said, “so whatever happens at our network – if we do get a piece of the pie and we’re one of the four horseman; or not, if this is our lame-duck year and this is my last year at Turner as well, we’re going to have fun and go out with a bang.”

Sign up for the BSM 8@8

The Top 8 Sports Media Stories of the Day, sent directly to your inbox, every morning at 8am ET.

Invalid email address
We promise not to spam you. You can unsubscribe at any time.
Continue Reading

Sports Radio News

The Blitz 1170 in Tulsa to Cease Operations

“The company decided the sports format wasn’t working and they’re going to take the signal in another direction.”

Barrett Sports Media

Published

on

the blitz logo

After just under three years in the format, Griffin Media is pulling the plug on The Blitz 1170 in Tulsa.

Social media posts from the station’s local hosts reveal that The Blitz will be moving away from its sports format on Wednesday, June 26th.

“There’s some news from our part of the world. Griffin Media has made the decision to eliminate The Blitz 1170 and those of us working there after June 26,” wrote morning host Rick Couri. “The company decided the sports format wasn’t working and they’re going to take the signal in another direction.

“This will likely bring my 42 year career of being on the air in Tulsa to an end, I don’t see a lot of other options for several reasons. I will still be broadcasting Tulsa University and Union football and who knows what else might come along. Until then I want to say thank you to everyone who has listened along the way and those incredible people I’ve worked with. It’s been quite an adventure with many amazing opportunities and experiences to be forever grateful for.”

The station featured Couri in mornings, followed by The Dan Patrick Show and The Rich Eisen Show. Afternoon drive was helmed by Colby Daniels and Program Director Jeremie “Pop” Polin from 3-6 PM. Daniels shared a similar post on social media as Couri.

The Blitz 1170 will be changing formats in a couple weeks. While I’m very sad about this news, I’m more thankful for having this opportunity and establishing friendships that will continue beyond the airwaves. I’m proud of this entire team and can’t say enough positive things about everyone I had the privilege to work with. I appreciate all the listeners supporting the Blitz every day,” Daniels wrote. “Some followed me to this signal and others welcomed me to Tulsa radio with open arms. You all have a special place in my heart.

“I feel like I’m at a major crossroads in my broadcasting career and I don’t know what my next step will be. I know I have so much more to offer but will have to carefully weigh whatever options emerge. It’s rare in this business to be given the opportunity to finish out the last 2 weeks. Our final show will be June 26th so let’s have fun doing what we love until then.”

According to a report from RadioInsight, the station recently changed its call letters to KOTV-AM, to replicate the same branding used by the company’s TV outlet in the market.

Griffin Media has yet to announce plans for the station after flipping away from the sports format on June 26th.

Sign up for the BSM 8@8

The Top 8 Sports Media Stories of the Day, sent directly to your inbox, every morning at 8am ET.

Invalid email address
We promise not to spam you. You can unsubscribe at any time.
Continue Reading
Advertisement

Advertisement

Upcoming Events

Barrett Media Writers

Copyright © 2024 Barrett Media.