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Bonds TV: MLB Mandates How Home Runs Can Be Shown PDF Print E-mail
Written by Maury Brown   
Monday, 23 July 2007 10:25

MLBMLB may have issues with whether Barry Bonds may, or may not, be using performance-enhancing drugs, but they want to make sure that the video images of his home run chase are well protected.

Here's the release from MLB on how game-in-progress home run highlights of Barry Bonds can be shown as he approaches the all-time home run record:

The following are regulations regarding the transmission within the United States of game-in-progress highlights of Barry Bonds’ at-bats during his pursuit of the all-time home run record:

Effective July 20th, Major League Baseball’s rightsholders and their affiliated networks are permitted to air up to a 60-second game-in-progress taped highlight, in any programming, immediately following each at-bat of Barry Bonds through the at-bat in which he hits home run #756. Entities permitted to air such highlights are: ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN News, ESPN on ABC, FOX, FOX News Channel, FOX Sports Net, FX, TBS, TNT and CNN.

All other television networks (local, regional or national) are permitted to air up to a 60-second game-in-progress taped highlight of Bonds’ home runs #755 and #756 (i.e., only those two at-bats) in any programming.
This advisory does not authorize any live cut-ins by any network or any live or taped highlights by any on-line media.
 
ESPN to Provide Cut-Ins of Bonds At-Bats PDF Print E-mail
Written by Maury Brown   
Friday, 20 July 2007 09:06

ESPNGet ready to see much more of Barry Bonds on ESPN.

The Associated Press reports that the network has announced that it will be cut-in on all programming to show all of Bonds' at-bats, unless it is a show covered by a national network-rights holder.

While it was not reported by the AP, there have been discussions recently by FOX to do possibly the same during their weekend MLB national telecasts.

On top of who will be announcing, MLB has now set forth regulations for transmitting home run highlights as Bonds approaches the all-time home run records. Below is edict sent out on what is, and is not, permitted for broadcasters:

The following are regulations regarding the transmission within the United States of highlights of Barry Bonds’ at-bats during his pursuit of the all-time home run record:

Starting today, July 20th, Major League Baseball’s rightsholders and their affiliated networks are permitted to air up to a 60-second, taped highlight, in any programming, immediately following each at-bat of Barry Bonds through the at-bat in which he hits home run #756. Entities permitted to air such highlights are: ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN News, ESPN on ABC, FOX, FOX News Channel, FOX Sports Net, FX, TBS, TNT and CNN.

All other television networks (local, regional or national) are permitted to air up to a 60-second taped highlight of Bonds’ home runs #755 and #756 (i.e., only those two at-bats) in any programming.

This advisory does not authorize any live cut-ins by any network or any live or taped highlights by any on-line media.

 
Geddy Lee, Peter Gammons, and ESPN Try to Rock PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Maury Brown   
Friday, 20 July 2007 02:01

When ESPN and Rush Just Don't WorkFor anyone that has seen the ESPN Fantasy Baseball commercial, here's a still image that you can click on to see this odd grouping in all its funky detail.

Sometimes, a picture is worth a thousand words...  What Geddy Lee won't do for his love of baseball/the Blue Jay.

Geddy's playing a Fender Jazz bass.

10 points to anyone that can comment on what kind of odd-rod Gammons is playing.

Click on the above image to see it in a large high-resolution format.
 

 
ESPN to Launch Prime-time Newsmagazine PDF Print E-mail
Written by Maury Brown   
Monday, 16 July 2007 01:17

ESPNESPN will be adding more programming to their Fall line-up come October.

The "Worldwide Leader In Sports" plans to launch a prime-time newsmagazine tentatively titled ESPN Reports according to Mediaweek.

The show is slated to launch on Tuesday, Oct. 16 at 7 p.m. ET.

ESPN says the show will  be a "combination of investigative features, profiles of sports personalities, and stories on innovations in the sports world."

 
MLB Punishes ESPN For Jumping the Gun PDF Print E-mail
Written by Maury Brown   
Thursday, 05 July 2007 17:32

MLBOn Weds. June 27th, MLB sent an advisory to members of the media announcing that the All-Star player selections would be made available in advance to the media at approximately 3:30 p.m. (EDT), with an embargo to last until The 2007 Major League Baseball All-Star Game Selection Show Presented by Chevrolet, had been concluded on TBS later in the day. The reason for releasing the names in advance of the televised announcement was to allow “local news-gathering organizations to obtain player reactions after games that day.”

The release had the following in bolded section within it:

AS A CONDITION OF THE EMBARGO, ALL OUTLETS ARE PROHIBITED FROM SHARING THIS INFORMATION PUBLICLY VIA PRINT, RADIO, TELEVISION, INTERNET OR ANY OTHER DISTRIBUTION METHODS, INCLUDING MOBILE TECHNOLOGY, UNTIL THE CONCLUSION OF THE TBS BROADCAST.

ESPN, however, released the names of the players selected for the All-Star Game on SportsCenter in the midst of the TBS selection show, much to the consternation of MLB Headquarters.

Now, MLB is making its displeasure known... with actions. As Neil Best of Newsday reported earlier today:

The punishment was the loss of special consideration Tuesday night in the form of one of those spiffy on-site sets that ESPN usually uses at major events even when it is not the rights-holder for said event. Basically, that means you will see the usual commentators covering the game for ESPN in San Francisco, but presumably they will be standing up instead of sitting down, unless they are back on the set in Bristol, where they will be able to sit down behind a desk, as usual.

This may seem trivial on one level, and yet is much larger on another. MLB sent numerous releases mentioning the TBS show, which was the unofficial coming out party for TBS with MLB under a new broadcast agreement. MLB might have been upset on their own, but the addition of TBS into the mix might have raised the ire a notch or two further.

It will be interesting to see if this action impacts how the announcement is made next year.

 
Cardinals See Television Viewership Drop 10% PDF Print E-mail
Written by The Staff   
Tuesday, 03 July 2007 10:29

CardinalsWith the World Series Champion St. Louis Cardinals sitting 9.5 games out of first place in a lack-luster NL Central, fan interest – at least on the television – has been dropping.

Ratings on “FSN Midwest are down 10 percent in the ratings over the same date last year, and contests on over-the-air TV have dipped 4 percent. (That package was on KPLR, Channel 11, last year and is on KSDK, Channel 5, this season),” according to Nielsen Media Research by way of Dan Ceasar of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

Ceasar reports that 7.6 percent of television homes in the St. Louis area are tuning into Cardinals game this season. That’s a drop from 8.4 percent compared to the same time last year.

Part of the reason for the drop might be attributed to the declining number of games available to Cardinals fans, as compared to last year. The Cardinals have 21 games scheduled on KSDK (Channel 5), 19 fewer than the club had on KPLR (Channel 11) last season and 58 fewer than the 79 games the club had on over-the-air TV in 1991-93.

Below are the ratings for the Cardinals based on Nielsen Media Research.

 YearOver The Air
Cable 
 1996 10.2 3.0
 1997 11.8 4.7
 1998 14.8 7.0
 1999 11.7 6.4
 2000 12.8 8.6
 2001 11.0 7.4
 2002 10.9  7.7
 2003 10.3 7.6
 2004 12.5 8.8
 2005 12.9  9.2
 2006 13.4 8.6
 2007 13.7* 7.6*

* 2007 figures though Thursday

  • Over-the-air games are on KSDK (Channel 5) this season after being on KPLR (Channel 11) previous years. Cable telecasts were on Prime Sports in 1996-97, but have been on FSN Midwest since.
  • Each ratings point represents 1 percent of the homes in the St. Louis market that have a TV set.

Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch

 
Dan Patrick on "The Price is Right"?!? PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Maury Brown   
Friday, 29 June 2007 01:26

Dan PatrickDan Patrick of ESPN has been contacted by the producers of the game show The Price is Right in an effort to see if the ESPN television and radio personality would be interested in hosting the show. Auditions are being held to replace retired host Bob Barker, and Patrick might be on a short list to audition.

The LA Daily News is reporting :

Patrick wouldn't comment on the report except to say: "Len Barker was always one of my favorite pitchers." Others tossed around in the media as contenders include Mark Steines, the "Entertainment Tonight" host and former sportscaster at KCAL Channel 9; B-list actors George Hamilton and John O'Hurley, and (the biggest challenger) Rosie O'Donnell, who claims she's out of the running, as if she was ever in it. In a direct swipe at "Stump the Schwab," TV Guide recently named "The Price Is Right" as the "greatest game show of all time."

Let's hope Keith Olbermann isn't fielding calls.

 
MASN to Add “Super Slo Mo” to Nats & Orioles Games PDF Print E-mail
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Written by The Staff   
Monday, 11 June 2007 14:50
MASNMid-Atlantic Sports Network (MASN) announced today that they will add “Super Slo Mo” video replays to its production of home games, starting with Tuesday’s Beltway Battle at Camden Yards. While standard video cameras shoot about 24 frames per second, the “Super Slo Mo” camera shoots up to 90 frames per second, allowing at-home viewers to see incredible in-game detail.

The technology is currently being used by many national networks, but very few regional networks like MASN.

“This technology will allow viewers to see the actual stitches on the baseball as it approaches the plate. It marks another example of MASN’s commitment to providing the highest-quality coverage of major league baseball to its viewers,” said MASN spokesman Todd Webster.

The cameras will be used at Camden Yards and RFK Stadium during home games for both teams.
 
MASN in Dispute with Time Warner PDF Print E-mail
Written by The Staff   
Friday, 08 June 2007 07:47

MASNMid-Atlantic Sports Network (MASN) has filed for arbitration with Time Warner in an attempt to force them to carry the network in "the Triangle"-- a metropolitan area/region in the Piedmont of North Carolina in the United States, anchored by the cities of Raleigh and Durham, and the town of Chapel Hill. As reported by the News & Observer:

MASN, which is controlled by the Orioles, has the TV rights to Major League Baseball in Eastern North Carolina and is carried in the Raleigh-Durham market by DirecTV and Dish Network but not Time Warner, despite more than two years of negotiations.

When the Federal Communications Commission approved the partitioning of bankrupt cable system Adelphia by Time Warner and Comcast, it gave regional sports networks the right to take cable providers to arbitration if they refused to carry the networks.

That provision was designed to find a solution in the Washington market, where Nationals games were unavailable on local cable during the team's first two seasons because Comcast refused to carry MASN. A settlement was reached in that dispute in August.

According to the request filed with the American Arbitration Association by MASN, negotiations with Time Warner broke down over MASN's demand to be carried on basic or expanded cable (like ESPN or Fox Sports Net South) while Time Warner was only willing to negotiate over space on its digital system (like ESPNews or Fox Soccer Channel).

Time Warner's responce is that MASN is not "regional" to North Carolina and therefore ineligible for arbitration under the FCC provisions.

 
Sunday's Red Sox/Yankees Game: High Ratings for ESPN PDF Print E-mail
Written by The Staff   
Tuesday, 05 June 2007 10:44

ESPNSunday night's Yankees/Red Sox game on ESPN garnered the highest regular-season household rating ever for a Sunday night game on the network.

The game earned a 4.2 Nielson rating with an average of 3,985,000 households. That ranks as the fifth-highest watched regular-season game ever on ESPN, and according to the Sports Business Daily was the most watched game on ESPN since Mark McGwire hit home run number 61 in 1998 on his way to passing Roger Maris' single-season home run record.

 
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