As I celebrate the Red Sox winning the American League East, Friday night was truly a great night of baseball. The Chicago Cubs clinched the National League Central, but they had to wait until Milwaukee lost to San Diego to celebrate. The Arizona Diamondbacks clinched a playoff spot, but didn’t find out until manager Bob Melvin told them. And the New York Mets continue to crumble in the National League East and the Philadelphia Phillies, counted out a week ago have now taken the lead by one game.
Following the Red Sox, NESN followed all angles of the game with the Twins, constantly updating the Yankees-Baltimore game. And after the Red Sox won, NESN remained in the studio with Tom Caron and Dennis Eckersley, showing shots of the Jumbotron which was showing the Yankees on the screen and cutting to shots of the crowd at Fenway Park which mostly stayed to watch the game as it went into extra innings. And when the O’s won on a strange bases loaded bunt by Melvin Mora, the Red Sox and the fans who stayed got to celebrate. NESN gets extra points for blowing away plans to air a taped debate of “candidates” for President of Red Sox Nation. Instead, NESN covered the celebrations in the locker room and the field (reporters Tina Cervasio and Kathryn Tappen deserve hazard pay for enduring champagne and beer showers). This was a night for the fan who had either the MLB Extra Innings package or ESPN which also updated the scores during the Padres-Brewers game. Fun night to watch.
Ok, let’s go to some links.
Jerry Garcia of the San Antonio Express-News writes that baseball is coming down to the wire on its final weekend and TBS is getting ready to air its first MLB postseason.
The Dallas Morning News’ Barry Horn also writes about TBS and the MLB postseason, but he also laments the passing of the Braves on TBS era and also has an interesting story on how the Texas Rangers almost became the third MLB team to air on a superstation.
Dan Caesar of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch writes about TBS snubbing Skip Carey for the playoffs and also goes into the channel’s plans for the League Divisional Series.
Jay Posner of the San Diego Union-Tribune writes that Tony Gwynn is just getting started on a whirlwind tour that begins this weekend for Cox Channel 4, then TBS.
Jonathan Okanes of the Contra Costa (CA) Times says TBS is stepping up to the plate for the playoffs.
In his Newsday blog, Neil Best reports that Time Warner Cable in New York and New Jersey will pick up TBS HD so fans of the Yankees (and possibly the Mets) can watch the MLB playoffs.
Mike Shields of Mediaweek says MLB.com and FoxSports.com will increase the online content for the MLB postseason with new pre and postgame shows involving talent from both sites. However, I don’t see anything on streaming games online for the US audience. I know that MLB streams games for International fans, but nothing yet for the United States.
TV Week provides the national sports ratings for the week of September 17-23.
CNBC’s Darren Rovell says the Yankees bringing Roger Clemens to pitch was almost worth the price of his salary.
On Sunday, 60 Minutes will have an interview with Tennessee Titans QB Vince Young and he’s still bitter over losing the Heisman Trophy to Reggie Bush.
John Dempsey of Variety has a feature of ESPN Ombudsman Le Anne Schreiber.
Teddy Greenstein of the Chicago Tribune reports that city residents can now see the Big Ten Network on RCN Cable. Greenstein says the deals with RCN and Wide Open West (WOW) Cable signed Friday have now put the number of subscribers for BTN at 30 million. The Evansville (IN) Courier & Press says WOW will put BTN on its expanded basic tier.
Laura Nachman of the Bucks County Courier Times marks the 10th Anniversary of Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia.
From the “Don’t They Have Anything Better To Do” Department comes this story from Stephanie Struglinski of the Deseret (UT) Morning News that five Western U.S. Senators are appealing to DirecTV and Dish Network to pick up the mtn. and get Mountain West games on TV. Tony Pizza (I guess that’s his real name) of the Daily Utah Chronicle, the University of Utah’s student newspaper writes about the mtn. picking up more cable carriage, albeit slowly.
Don’t call it a comeback, Mama said knock you out. SI’s Richard Deitsch talks with LL Cool J about his love for boxing.
On Friday, I linked to two stories about Boston’s WCVB-TV launching a new Sunday sports show. Here’s the station’s own story on the premiere this Sunday night. The show will be called SportsCenter 5 OT.
Those are the links for Saturday. When I started, I thought I would only have three or four, but I ended up having more than I expected which is a good thing. I’ll have NFL Picks coming up later today.