If you’re a baseball fan like I am, then today is like Christmas Eve waiting to open the presents as we wait for the World Series to start. So I give you a couple of notices, both of which I forgot to post last night. Here’s one from MLB talking about the ratings for the postseason through the LCS.
MLB POSTSEASON TELEVISION VIEWERSHIP
UP +15% HEADING INTO WORLD SERIES
Yankees Clincher Most Watched LCS Game Six Since 2004
Sunday night’s 5-2 win by the Yankees over the Angels in Game Six of the ALCS on FOX registered a 9.3 household rating and 15.5 million viewers, both highs for 2009 and marking a strong finish for the LCS.
Including the Division Series, LCS, and AL Central Tiebreaker, viewership for MLB Postseason coverage on FOX and TBS is up +15% over last year.
Sunday night’s game enjoyed the largest LCS audience for a non-Game Seven since Game Six of the 2004 ALCS between the Yankees and the Red Sox (the famous “bloody sock” game). The game also marked a +39% increase in viewership over the most recent LCS Game 6 on FOX (2007, Red Sox-Indians).
And here are highlights from a Fox Sports conference call involving the announcing crew for the World Series. This took place on Monday.
GOREN, BUCK, McCARVER & GUILLEN PREVIEW YANKEES/PHILLIES WORLD SERIES MATCH UP — MLB on FOX’s Emmy Award-winning broadcast team of Joe Buck and Tim McCarver were joined by FOX Sports President Ed Goren and special pre and postgame guest analyst Ozzie Guillen on a conference call to answer questions and offer previews of this year’s World Series matchup.
Ozzie Guillen on expanding replay in baseball: “I was pushing for the home run replays because it was something we needed. I think we have to trust the umpires. We cannot make this game a computer game. We have people out there that have jobs and no matter what the call is, we have to respect that. Sometimes that’s good for baseball. Sometimes that makes people talk about baseball. Fans disagree and the manager goes out and has an argument. That’s been a part of the game for so many years. Some people like it and some people don’t, but I don’t think we change anything right now because we made changes last year. I don’t think it is necessary every year to put in rules because of the umpires. Right now I think it’s too early put in more replay. I think it’s too soon right now.”
Joe Buck on calling his 12th World Series tying him with Vin Scully and Curt Gowdy for most by a play-by-play announcer: “I don’t say this to try and be funny but I just happened to be in the right place at the right time. I happened to work for the same people since I started as a 24-year-old. I’m lucky and I don’t consider myself in that category with those two guys. Those two guys are the standard by which all others are measured. I’m certainly not in that category just because I’ve had some longevity. I’ve just been the lucky guy and longevity doesn’t equal greatness and in my mind greatness is the other two guys and certainly continues with Vin Scully to this day. I’m not even in that same sentence. I just feel fortunate to be able to call my 12th.”
As he prepares to call his 20th World Series, Tim McCarver on the differences between calling a World Series game and playing in one: “It’s a lot tougher to announce a World Series than it is to play in one. I think Ozzie will find that out. Playing in it you can do something about it. From a preparation standpoint, you have to plan for far greater things that can happen to 25 different players and a manager. Your reactions are different because you are reacting from the standpoint of professional broadcaster as opposed to reacting from a player’s standpoint.”
Ozzie Guillen on concern over his use of language: “I don’t really curse and say bad things when I’m not with my team. I’m going to talk about my team. I’m going to talk about baseball. Don’t worry, I’m not going to curse. I only curse when
media is around me.” Chicago
Ed Goren on the national appeal of Yankees/Phillies World Series: “I love the Phillies storylines. I hope it works out where it’s Pedro Martinez coming back to the
Bronxand if there’s an athlete in baseball who I really love to see on the big stage and get more exposure it’s Ryan Howard. He seems to be a great kid and a heck of a ball player. I don’t think there will be a negative affect on our ratings with the two East Coast teams. In fact, during Turner’s NLCS coverage, there were actually more viewers in Philadelphiawatching that series, even though it’s a smaller market, than were watching in . On top of everything else you have a team looking to win back-to-back World Series….We just came off of a great ALCS. If we get the caliber of games in the World Series that we got for the ALCS, we don’t have to worry about the ratings. We don’t have to worry about anything.” Los Angeles
Ozzie Guillen on Pedro Martinez’s season: “We tried Pedro a little bit at the White Sox to see what he had. Whenever you have the caliber of pitcher of Pedro, you’re always going to be in the game. As long as he throws strikes and throws the ball where he wants to, he’s always going to have a chance. I feel very, very excited about Pedro. I know he went through a lot of difficulties. He went to the workouts to show people he can still pitch. He pitched really well and a lot of people did not believe in him. He went back to the
and continued to do the rehab assignments, continued to work hard and I think that gave him what he wanted. He wanted the opportunity to be what he is right now and one thing it says is when you work hard, it will pay off.” Dominican Republic
Joe Buck on criticism from fans that they are bias against one team or another: “We get excited when good plays happen and get critical when bad plays happen. It doesn’t matter which team we’re getting excited about and it doesn’t matter which team we are getting critical of. I think any fan that is living and dying with every pitch is an easily explained phenomenon. They want the voices they hear to think and act like they do. I think it’s only human nature. When they don’t hear that or they don’t hear their local announcers who do the games for them during the course of the summer and they’re hearing it from someone who has a different point of view, I think their radar goes up and it’s like, ‘clearly this guy is against my team.’ I can tell you, I don’t think like that.”
Again, there’s that 12th World Series reference regarding Joe Buck and Vin Scully. I e-mailed Fox Sports about that and I was told that number refers to network TV World Series assignments for Scully. However, if that’s the case, I have counted 11 for Vin. Fox says they’re checking to make sure their number is correct.