Trying to copy the success and energy of the football and basketball editions of College GameDay, ESPN is sending the Sunday editions of Baseball Tonight on the road. Baseball Tonight will broadcast live outside the venues of each Sunday Night Baseball game hoping to capture the atmosphere of each ball park before the show tosses it inside to Dan Shulman, Orel Hershiser and Bobby Valentine. Host Karl Ravech will be joined by Baseball Tonight mainstay John Kruk and new ESPN’er Barry Larkin. Reporters Buster Olney and Wendi Nix will also be on site to contribute reports and insider information. It’s a new approach for Baseball Tonight.
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Baseball Tonight Hits the Road This Season for Sunday Night Baseball
ESPN’s Baseball Tonight will regularly travel to the site of Sunday Night Baseball this season, beginning with the San Francisco Giants at Los Angeles Dodgers on April 3, with shows each Sunday at 12:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. ET (generally on ESPN). Hosted by Karl Ravech with analysts John Kruk and Barry Larkin, Sunday Night Baseball analysts Orel Hershiser and Bobby Valentine, along with reporters Buster Olney and Wendi Nix, Baseball Tonight will also feed content throughout the day to ESPN’s news and information shows and ESPN.com, ESPN Mobile TV and ESPN Radio. The set for Sunday’s Baseball Tonight will be positioned outside of the ballpark to capture the atmosphere as fans enter the venue during the 7 p.m. show.
“There is nothing like being at the ballpark, and there couldn’t be a more appropriate setting for Baseball Tonight,” said Jed Drake, ESPN senior vice president and executive producer, production. “We’re constantly evolving our presentation at ESPN. Baseball Tonight on the road with Sunday Night Baseball is the latest example. It’s going to be a great show – flat out fun for the viewers, and a blast for us to produce.”
Baseball Tonight’s 7 p.m. episode will include:
§ highlights from every game played that day
§ news and information from around the league
§ analysis and special stadium-specific segments featuring Kruk
§ regular on-field demonstrations and analysis from Larkin
§ Hershiser analyzing the pitching matchup and providing a game preview with Valentine
§ Ravech, entering his 17th season as host of the show
§ reports by Olney and Nix, among other ESPN reporters
Baseball Tonight’s 12:30 p.m. episode will include:
§ host Ravech with reporter Olney
§ news and information from around the league, including reports and analysis from a deep roster of ESPN commentators
§ a preview of the Sunday Night Baseball matchup
Baseball Tonight will be on the road for the following Sunday Night Baseball games to start the season:
Date Teams (all game telecasts at 8 p.m. ET) April 3 San Francisco at Los Angeles Dodgers (ESPN2) April 10 N.Y. Yankees at Boston April 17 Texas at N.Y. Yankees April 24 Cincinnati at St. Louis May 1 N.Y. Mets at Philadelphia May 8 Atlanta at Philadelphia May 15 Boston at N.Y. Yankees May 22 Chicago Cubs at Boston May 29 Cincinnati at Atlanta (ESPN2)
ESPN’s 22nd season televising Major League Baseball will include five games March 31-April 1 highlighted by an exclusive Opening Night showcase when the Giants visit the Dodgers Thursday, March 31, at 8 p.m.
More press releases are on the way.