Baseball Toaster Bronx Banter
Yankee Panky #5: Yankees vs. Red Sox -- The Media
2007-04-16 08:00
by Will Weiss
Note: The Bronx Banter blog has moved to

The non-coverage of Derek Jeter’s six errors through the first two weeks of the season is a subject I’d love to get into. However, I want to wait on the Jeter issue to see if it
actually does become a story beyond the statistics table. Will any writers or broadcasters call him out and question his defensive ability? (I’ll be surprised if Steven Goldman doesn’t mention the Jeter situation in the Pinstriped Bible tomorrow).

So, with the first round of Yankees-Red Sox games taking place this weekend, I figured this would be a good time to bring the banter fully to you the readers and get an informal poll of which team has the better mainstream and blog coverage.

Yankees: YES
Red Sox: NESN

YES play-by-play: Michael Kay
NESN play-by-play: Don Orsillo

YES analysts: Ken Singleton, Joe Girardi, Al Leiter, John Flaherty, Paul O’Neill, Dave Justice
NESN analysts: Jerry Remy, Jim Rice, Dennis Eckersley, Dave McCarty

YES field reporter: Kim Jones
NESN field reporter: Tina Cervasio (who used to voice the show “Running” on YES, and auditioned for the field reporter job that eventually went to Jones)

YES studio host: Bob Lorenz, Nancy Newman (backup), Chris Shearn (Batting Practice)
NESN studio host: Tom Caron, Hazel Mae (rewind), Kathryn Tappen (weekends)


Red Sox:

Red Sox:

Yankees: WCBS 880-AM
Red Sox: WEEI 850-AM

Yankees radio team: John Sterling, Suzyn Waldman
Red Sox radio team: Joe Castiglione, Dave O’Brien, Glenn Geffner
--> Geffner is the the team’s former media relations/PR head

Yankees: NY Daily News, NY Post, New York Times, Newsday, Journal News, Newark Star-Ledger, Bergen Record, Hartford Courant, New Haven Register
--> Alternates – Times Herald-Record, Staten Island Advance, New York Sun, Village Voice, AM New York

Red Sox: Boston Globe, Boston Herald, Providence Journal, Hartford Courant, New Haven Register, Connecticut Post, Portland Press Herald, Concord Monitor, Nashua Telegraph, Manchester Union-Leader, Springfield Union-News, Worcester Telegram, Quincy Patriot-Ledger, Woonsocket Call

See sidebar

During each regular season Yankees-Red Sox series, the beat writers and columnists for the two teams play a game against each other at the ballpark. The writers get very stoked for this. They talk about it for weeks and discuss their exploits prior to that particular night's real game between the Yanks and Sox. The New York crew has a secret weapon: Bob Klapisch, who pitched at Columbia University.

* * *

Which group of media serves its audience best? Which group of writers and/or broadcasters provides the most comprehensive, intelligent, and provocative coverage? I’ll join in the discussion when I can throughout the week. We can discuss it in more detail next week, when the aftermath of the three-game set at Fenway has dissipated somewhat.

Comments (93)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2007-04-16 09:25:50
1.   Jen
You might want to add the New York Times under Red Sox Newspapers.
2007-04-16 09:32:40
2.   DarrenF
Typical Lupica this Sunday.

Two passing mentions of Yankees: (1) Pavano injury, and (2) Yankee injuries in general.

No mention of Alex Rodriguez's historic start.

Another lengthy love letter to Jonathan Papelbon.

It's a New York newspaper during baseball season. The third baseman of one of the New York baseball teams is playing baseball at a level that is rarefied. For any baseball fan, ARod's first eleven games are simply a joy to witness. One of the best players ever performing at the top of his game. Lupica will not mention ARod until ARod grounds into a ninth-inning double play.

2007-04-16 09:36:49
3.   bp1
I haven't been exposed to the Red Sox media, so I can't really compare them to what the Yankees offer on YES. I will say that I prefer the YES package to both ESPN and FOX, from the announcers to the production of the broadcast. Maybe it's comfort with the familiar, but the Morgan/Miller combo almost ruins a game, and FOX treats every sports event like NASCAR (loud announcers, loud promos, loud commercials, loud everything). I won't even mention Scooter the talking baseball.

1 Heh heh heh ....

2007-04-16 09:39:04
4.   Jim Rice
Does John Sterling bother Yankee fans? I find him incredibly annoying.

Mike and the Mad Dog are much, much better than the afternoon guys on WEEI. Dale and Holley are decent, though.

I didn't see Sox Therapy on the sidebar, that's a decent place for Sox discussion on the web.

Dennis Eckersley should replace Jerry Remy. Or at least join him and Orsillo in the booth.

2007-04-16 09:41:48
5.   RIYank
I actually like Sterling.
WEEI is absolutely horrible, though I agree with you that Dale and Holley are tolerable.

Wow, Ervin Santana just gave up five hits to begin his day. Speaking of absolutely horrible. The fifth was J. D. Drew's double. Still nobody out in the bottom of the first!

2007-04-16 09:42:54
6.   RIYank
Oh, make that six straight: Lowell just doubled.
Wasn't there some bizarre talk this winter of trading A-Rod for E. Santana plus some other junk?
2007-04-16 09:46:12
7.   RIYank
Varitek and Pena fly out weakly, but Alex Cora knocks in Lowell with yet another double, 6-1.
2007-04-16 09:48:40
8.   Cliff Corcoran
4 Back in the glory days of the late-90s dynasty I loved Sterling and Kay on the radio, but ever since Kay's moved to TV I've lost my affection for both. In fact, I was just thinking the other day while thoroughly enjoying the way Singleton and Flaherty work a game, that the YES team is too strong to bother with Kay anymore. Singleton, Leiter, Girardi and Flaherty are simply fantastic and Paul O'Neill made a leap in quality last year (though I don't believe he's done a game yet this year). The radio combo of Sterling and Waldman, of course, is an abomination. Waldman's an excellent reporter, but has a voice for print. Sterling, meanwhile, has devolved into a raging ego and an assortment of catch phrases. Regular listeners know every word he's going to say before it comes out of his mouth. Two things I value most in any format are insight and critical thinking and Sterling offers neither, while Waldman seems to be less his broacasting partner than his sidekick.
2007-04-16 09:54:21
9.   Zack
Nothing like the Fens to fix all the Red Sox offensive problems. Beckett is averaging approx. 8 runs per game of support thus far, cripes....

Having livied in Mass. for a few years, overall, the Sox media is way more devoted to the Sox but way more overblown.

New York has always been more of a National League town, and the newspaper coverage shows that. The Yanks get the coverage because they have been good, but now that the Mutts are doing well, its more them. ANd lets not get started on the Times.

In terms of tv and radio, the Soxs announcers have ours beaten hands down. NESN is inferior to YES overall, but the Yankees radio clowns drive me nuts (and Castiglione is pretty good), and Remy on tv is great (though Girardi, Singleton, and Flaherty are pretty good, as was Kaat).

As talk shows go, I'm not really a fan of either. WEEI is great because you get to listen to insane Sox fans either freak out or go crazy depending on the day, but their hosts are meh. Mike and the Mad Dog are so set in their ways and biases that they rarely offer anything useful, ditto Kay...

Of course, living out of both markets, I miss them terribly, but I'd have to give the Sox the nod in radio, the Yanks in TV and the web, and a push in the papers...

2007-04-16 09:55:50
10.   Dimelo
I've listened to Jerry Remy enough to know that the only person I've enjoyed as much as Remy in the YES booth has been Jim Kaat, and he's no longer with YES.

Remy is one of the best analyst. For me, the best analyst on YES is Pau O'Neil. I like listening to him and Kay together, he keeps Kay in line.

2007-04-16 09:56:04
11.   Zack
I should ammend that middle paragraph to focus more on radio. I like Remy a lot, and dislike Kay, but as Cliff points out, when its any combo without Kay, the Yanks team is real good...
2007-04-16 09:58:09
12.   bp1
8 It's funny, Cliff, how people view the radio broadcasts differently.

I used to enjoy listening to the Rizzuto, Messer, and White broadcasts, and often because of the goofy things Phil would do - call someone a huckleberry, talk about someone's 100 year old birthday, talk about cannolis, totally miss a call and then laugh about it. Whatever. It was always lighthearted and fun - and always entertaining.

I get some of the same vibe from the Sterling/Waldman pairing. She has gotten better from her first few games (who hasn't) and has lightened up a bit, and I think they're fun to listen to. John has a good call-by-call voice, and there's just enough schtick to make it fun and not quite so "do or die" serious. Sure, I roll my eyes at some of the things, but when I want "critical thinking", I come here. When I want stress free baseball by the barbeque, I flip on Sterling.

2007-04-16 10:04:06
13.   RIYank
I'm kind of in the same camp as bp1 12.
What I like about the Sterling broadcasts is his 'old school' style. There's just something pleasant about it. I know he's egotistical and his idea of analysis is to point out that you can't predict baseball, or that some managers would bunt in this situation but Jeter is such a great hitter that it wouldn't be wise, or "Well, never mind what I think, Joe says..." (That's the eye-rolling stuff that bp1 is talking about, I'm sure.)
I'm finding Waldman more irritating this year than last. A larger percentage of her remarks make me want to tell her to shut up. But I do still like her voice.

I enjoyed the Remy/Castiglione team despite their over-the-top homerism; mainly I liked the parochial Boston feel of the call of the game.

2007-04-16 10:13:01
14.   Zack
Its funny, although Remy and Castiglione are over the top Homers, I would take that 100% of the time over Sterling and Waldman's total shillness. Rooting for your team is way better than being a mouthpiece and never disagreeing...

And I don't see Sterling as old school, or even entertaining, I see it as totally irratating and useless for the reasons Cliff pointed out and more

2007-04-16 10:13:23
15.   Sliced Bread
For the past few years I've felt Yanks fans would be better served if the YES team and radio team switched places.

If I'm watching a game on TV I don't need anybody telling me what's going on. Just give me the best camera angles, and natural sound. As good as the YES announcers are I tend to tune them out after a while.

Listening to Lumpy and Chuckles on the radio (as comforting as the familiarity of their voices may be) I feel like I'm only getting a vague idea of what's going on in the game -- except, of course, for those moments when "it (the ball) is high.. it is far... it.. is ... gone!!"?

Singleton, Murcer, Girardi, and even Kay would provide far superior radio coverage.

2007-04-16 10:19:18
16.   Jim Rice
Well, Cliff captured my feelings about Sterling (and Waldman, for that matter) exactly. Those catchphrases! And he seems to force excitement into his voice sometimes. One thing I like about Castiglione is he's very low-key. (He and Trupiano seemed to really dislike each other, and fortunately, the Sox kept the much better of the two.)

If you really want to hear an over-the-top homer, watch a Celtics game with Tommy Heinsohn courtside. He takes it to another level.

2007-04-16 10:23:41
17.   Sliced Bread
8 I wouldn't say Sterling's coverage lacks insight. He's been around the team and the game long enough to reveal something interesting from time to time. But you're right about his lack of critical thinking. If that's your thing, Sterling is not your guy.
2007-04-16 10:25:26
18.   Will Weiss
To Jen's comment (1) ... I'm aware the New York Times Co. owns the Globe and the Red Sox, but as an individual entity, the New York Times does not cover the Red Sox on a regular basis. That's why they were omitted from the Red Sox newspaper media section.
2007-04-16 10:25:42
19.   C2Coke
15 I think cutting out Kay will give the YES announcers a much better edge. Kay is definitely more suited for radio. His play-by-play on TV annoyes me.

I really like Lieter in the booth because he has great analyses and he is not afraid to keep quiet when there is not much to say.

The camera shots by YES is far more superior than most other networks (with MLB.TV, I was actually exposed to quite a few different networks). In addition, their replays are almost always instantaneous.

2007-04-16 10:27:47
20.   Will Weiss
In the first year of YES (2002), I was locked out of seeing many games because of the Cablevision impasse, so if I wasn't at a game but was on editing duty, I listened to a lot of Sterling and Steiner. I basically HAD to watch Baseball Tonight or some form of highlight show to get the real story of what happened, because the events on the field seldom matched Sterling's call.
2007-04-16 10:40:55
21.   Max Nomad
3 I hate the Sox announcers, almost as much as the San Fran announcers. I really like Miller, but Morgan is ridiculously ignorant. FOX has McCarver, and that'll ruin ANYONE's lunch.

4 I think Sterling is funny, and if you ever listen to other radio broadcasters, there's just a lot of silence. Boring. Sterling may call a pitch down the middle "off the black," but he's good enough. Love the nicknames for players.
Mike and Dog are great. Classic NYC sports nuts.

8 I'm not a fan of Kay either. All he does is blow Jeter and talk till he's out of breath. I love Singleton, and miss Kaat dearly. Flaherty's pretty good, and I love how O'Neill bugs Kay so much. Leiter and Girardi are good analysts, but they don't talk that smooth way Singleton does.

Personally, my favorite announcers are the White Sox TV guys. In unison:

"Put it on the boaaaaard, YES! One-nothing, Good Guys!"

Kinda like a smaller version of Mexican soccer announcers:


2007-04-16 10:47:12
22.   Sliced Bread
19 good call re: the outstanding YES camerawork -- and I'd add that the directors do a great job of calling the shots and staying with them.

Going into the 7th inning stretch last week Gator was giving Bruney an earful in the dugout, and they stayed with it. You'd have to be an expert lip-reader to discern what was being said, but it was cool to see Gator in action. In that moment, YES presented an interesting snapshot that only a few people in the ballpark would have been able to capture, and it was much appreciated in my living room.

2007-04-16 10:47:31
23.   RZG
I really miss Kaat and like Singleton, Girardi, Leiter, and Flaherty. I don't like O'Neil, Justice, or Kay.

On the radio side:

I can't handle Sterling because he doesn't seem to describe what's going on while it happens. You'll hear a crowd reaction and later he'll tell you what happened and that's not too accurate if you have the TV on.

It's as if his eyes are going. Instead of saying "ground ball to 2B, over to first for the out with the runner on 2nd advancing" he'll give you "that's the 2nd out of the inning" without any details!

I realize I'm exaggerating but I compare him to other radio announcers who seem to be able to speak while the ball's in play.

Suzyn's OK with me except for some keywords that irritate me:

OBVIOUSLY - "Here's Joe Schmoe, obviously the Edmonton Trapper's pitching coach"

OF COURSE - She uses those 2 words so often it grates on me.

I suppose it's minor compared to other announcer's quirks but I let it get to me.

If that's the lousiest things I can come up with I must be satisfied.

2007-04-16 11:05:39
24.   Bama Yankee
21 "Personally, my favorite announcers are the White Sox TV guys."

That's a good one... that was a joke, right? You don't really like Hawk Harrelson, do you? ;-)

I actually watched about a minute of a White Sox game over the weekend. Right up until Hawk uttered his first: "HE GONE"
Then I gouged my eardrums out with a white-hot ice pick...

Also, is your friend. ;-)

2007-04-16 11:06:27
25.   Jen
18 Will, I was sort of being sarcastic about the Times. Sometimes there seems to be a bit of a bias in favor of the team up north.
2007-04-16 11:07:03
26.   Sliced Bread
Mike Plugh over at Canyon of Heroes destroyed Flaherty's work on YES the other day.

I didn't agree with everything Mike found annoying about him, but there's something about Flash's observations and insights that rub me the wrong way.

I dunno, it's sort of like listening to the judges on American Idol critiquing the contestants. You know they know what they're talking about -- but at the same time you figure if they REALLY knew what they were talking about they wouldn't be on American Idol. Know what I'm saying? Me neither.

2007-04-16 11:12:55
27.   Sliced Bread
24 TinyGOAL. That's rich, Bama.

25 word. Fortunately, Kepner tends to do his own thing but his colleagues and editors do seem to be up to thier knees in crimson, don't they?

2007-04-16 11:22:38
28.   vockins
I have never heard WEEI, but if Mike and Mad Dog is better, it's got to be an aural abortion on that station.

The Singleton/Lieter combo is A double plus good. Love it. Lieter's got enthusiasm (that doesn't turn silly) that I really appreciate.

2007-04-16 11:23:27
29.   claybeez
I'll definitely take the YES team on the TV broadcast side. That being said the Sox announcers come in a close 2nd. I only had EI for 2005 and 2006, but that was long enough to already make me miss Jim Kaat. I think Leiter is an excellent replacement. I enjoy the way he breaks down the game. I am already tired of Flaherty. So many of his comments are laced with his obvious inferiority complex. It even comes out as resentment and pent up hostility at times. Singleton on the other hand is class, cool and insightful. He'll tell you the truth, but in the old school manner of a gentleman.

I'm just happy to be in NY now (if only temporarily) and to not have to watch 1/2 the Yanks games on other networks. There are some real snooze inducers out there.

2007-04-16 11:27:21
30.   Will Weiss
Wasn't aware of the sarcasm, Jen. ... It's real easy to misinterpret sarcasm for seriousness in these forums. Your observation of the homerism in New England is noted.
2007-04-16 11:32:08
31.   Jen
30 Yeah, I get that in real life too.
2007-04-16 11:35:28
32.   monkeypants
23 But you're NOT exaggerating. I quit listening to the radio call because Sterling seems never to actually, you know, describe the play by play. Whole plays disappear while he shouts or, worse, pauses--only later is the play described, in excrutiating and inaccurate detail, which of course costs you all the plays going at that time. Meanwhile, Waldman at best giggles and at worst feeds hopeless info to Sterling so that he can dismiss her on air (reminds me of the old SNL "Jane you...").

The Yankees radio announcers are simply attrocious. As bad as Rizzuto was--and he was, though he got worse over time--he occasionally tried to give play by play. And at least he actually played the game, so that you could count on a few stories about Dimaggio or the old ball park. What does Sterling give you? He's horrible at play by play, seems to know little about the game beyond catchphrases, and can't even provide the standard former-player color man stories.

And no matter how bad Rizzuto was, he was balanced by White or Messer. But Waldman? Sheesh.

2007-04-16 11:38:38
33.   Sliced Bread
Serious question for the Boston baseball media observers in the house:

Theo's gorilla suit stunt: Was that really to escape reporters staking him out on Yawkey Way?

I have a hard time believing any person, let alone the General Manager of the Red Sox, could walk out of Fenway Park in a gorilla suit and go unnoticed.

Was that stunt not caught on camera? I know it's been photo-shopped to death, but did anyone in the Boston media think to take a picture of the suspicious looking monkey walking toward Epstein's Lexus? (or whatever he drives)

I have a hard time believing the NY media would let Cashman get away with such a disappearing act -- if he was bold enough to try it, that is.

If Cashman was trying to play Mr. Invisible GM Guy he'd don a Tyler Clippard costume.

2007-04-16 11:43:59
34.   Max Nomad
9 I wouldn't be SO concerned with the Sox. Their bullpen is average, and while the offense is a sleeping giant, especially now that they have some games at Fenway, their starters are not as wonderful as the guys at SI and ESPN would have you believe. Beckett started last year brilliantly, as well, and he imploded exactly after his 3rd start (and that start against KC wadn't much). Schilling is always is better first half, cuz he's old and fat and gets tired, and the summer offenses come around to bite him. Thank goodness for Baseball Reference.

Daisuke I'm not sure about. It seems like he's got the ability, but 200 innings in MLB is a big difference from Nippon. I wanna watch him and see how well he does late in the season.

Other than that, Wakefield is league-average and unpredictable. And Tavarez? Puhleeze. One might make a case for Jon Lester's return, but there's more question marks around him then there are around Pavlov.

The Sox are very similar to the Yanks in many respects. I think the Yanks have a better offense, lesser defense, better bullpen, EQUAL rotation. I bet Wang comes back and does just fine (after his usual first-month tuneups, like Mo). And the Yanks have SO much to draw from in the Minors, so long as the young guns can survive working with Torre.

2007-04-16 11:46:00
35.   Max Nomad
32 My father said something interesting about Waldman. He figured that she was there to attract the older, female crowd. Demographics are everything...
2007-04-16 11:47:29
36.   Sliced Bread
35 Sterling's magnificent hair serves the same purpose, no?
2007-04-16 11:51:49
37.   monkeyball
It's funny, I was just thinking this weekend that with the retirement of Kaat, and the absence of Murcer, we currently have the worst Yankee coverage I can recall. Stirling and Waldman are atrocious; is it possible to listen to the radio with the sound down? Every Yankee failure is softpeddled and every win is a majestic sunrise. On the TV side I love Singleton, but the rest of them are a mess. Flaherty and Girardi are human sominex. Neither of these guys are broadcasters. (It's sort of like I feel when I watch Ron Guidry coach, "Can't an orgainization with the resources of the Yankees look beyond the end of their own nose to find qualified people?") And although I liked Kaye in his early days on the radio, the past couple of years have seen his love for the sound of his own opinions overcome his ability to call a game. It could be worse though, I could be forced to listen to Keith Hernandez.
2007-04-16 11:55:45
38.   Max Nomad
37 Keith Hernandez! Amen. What a dope.
2007-04-16 12:09:29
39.   jkay
I gave up on Sterling when Kay went to the tv side. Sterling and Steiner were unbearable and it is no better with Waldman.

Sterling's act is tired and there are too many ads on the radiocast. It seems every pitch, hit or steal has a sponsor.

Sterling's real name is Harold Moskowitz, or as I like to call him, the Moskowitz-bino.

On the tv side, Kay is bearable but any combo without him is better.

I think the Boston tv team does a solid job.

On the blog side, when the Sox are going bad, Dirtdogs and Soxaholic are great. Nomaas is the dirtdog equivalent for NY.

There are plenty of choices on the newspaper side to keep any fan happy.

2007-04-16 12:40:04
40.   rbj
It's interesting, I haven't gone to the NY "Yankees, please let the Red Sox win this time" Times website (except when there's a link here) for sports information (or anything else) in a long time, couple of years at least.

Mostly, I get my information from here, Pete Abraham, and a few others (WasWatching, RLYW). I don't mind the Yankees' announcers too much; half the time I've got the other team's feed. The NESN folk are pretty good, especially Remy -- a lot more objective than most other teams (Tigers, White Sox).

The "every play has a sponsor" thing is due to the Yankee FO, it's not due to Sterling. Small price to pay for a highly talented team.

2007-04-16 12:51:55
41.   Jim Dean
The killer for me about Sterling is he doesn't call a game, he recounts it. Mike and the Dog used to compare Sterling with the other team's announcers during critical moments. Do they still do that? WHen they did it was just painful to listen to. Sterling absolutely butchers plays and calls them wrong many more times than not. So he's often left to pick up the pieces of his own blunders. Just terrible radio work. And Suzyn seems to just report on what people say - there's so little real analysis it's disgusting.

I agree with 8 on the good ole days. Either it was all the winning or the two egos in Sterling and Kay kept them both in check.

33 On the gorilla suit - as much fun as it is to ridicule, it was originally reported that he's was just having fun with the whole soap opera. He saw the suit and threw it on - less to "escape" and more to toy with them.

2007-04-16 12:57:00
42.   pistolpete
41 MATMD still have a good time dissecting the big-play Sterling calls.

Speaking of which, they were actually on in the AM drive today in Imus's old slot, and I must say I rather enjoyed the show (for once) - they were noticeably looser & less about the sports & the angry phone calls. Francessa can be pretty funny when he's in a good mood.

I wouldn't mind them moving to this slot full-time...

2007-04-16 13:00:51
43.   Sliced Bread
41 clearly it was Theo's idea of a joke, but was he photographed?
2007-04-16 13:04:46
44.   Max Nomad
34 The guys I'd worry about are in Toronto. Halladay + Burnett + the old Chacin and Towers = Trouble. Great bats, too.
2007-04-16 13:25:12
45.   thelarmis
for me, i'm in atlanta, so i don't know anything about the boston coverage. i, unfortunately, only get YES and NY coverage, a coupla times a year when i'm home visiting family.

soooo, my votes go to:
Kim Jones = HOT!!!
Best Blog = Bronx Banter (hands down)
Fave Yanks Writer = Cliff Corcoran
Best All-Around Drummer = Steve Smith

6 errors in 2 weeks? are you kidding me? blech! we can erase a lot - in the minds and standings - with a weekend sweep at the fens.


2007-04-16 13:25:23
46.   C2Coke
44 A great Halladay is expected, but one person can only do so much. However, with a good Burnett and functional Chacin, it's a whole different story.
2007-04-16 13:47:37
47.   Andre
Red Sox announcers - I used to like Remy and Sean McDonough. Don't know if McDonough was liked very much by his bosses or others - he lost his tv gig and radio gig (on Sporting News Radio) within about a year. He was close to accepting a tv spot for the Mets, but he backed out of that at the last minute (according to him via his radio show). I still preferred him to Don Orsillo. Orsillo seems like a bit of an empty suit.

On the radio, Castiglione and Trupiano sounded very old school together. It was actually a pleasure to listen to them. Not sure about the new guys yet.

As for the Yanks announcers, I like their tv announcers, except for Kay. I liked Kaat the best, Murcer second, and Singleton third, although Singleton sometimes sounds like he has marbles in his mouth when he talks.

I agree about all of the comments re: Sterling so far. I preferred Sterling & Steiner to Sterling & Waldman, although neither team was/is that good.

2007-04-16 14:37:00
48.   Kanst
9 & 10 do you actually like Remy? Why?

I was logging in here to simply put how much I hate Remy. Orsillo is bearable but Remy is horrible. He will often spend an entire inning laughing and ignore the on field action. Listening you wouldnt know he was a baseball player, he never adds anything of the baseball prespective.

As an example, against KC, Remy spent an entire inning making fun of some KC fan who was in the stands without a shirt on and had a hairy chest. They literally laughed about it for an inning and a half and said nothing of the game.

IMHO the Yankee announcers beat the Red Sox team by a mile. Leiter and Flaherty are two of the most entertaining guys to listen to in the booth.

2007-04-16 14:58:54
49.   jayd
Sean McDonough was run out of town after saying John Henry et al didn't have the coin to buy the sox and compete. It turned out to be true -- all the big money contracts out (Manny still remains but not for lack of effort), the introduction of a version of money ball, and the occasional splash signing to keep the nitwits of the nation convinced they are still competing. In reality they are a real estate company and wannabe international baseball marketing conglomerate.

Orsillo is not exactly an empty suit, but McDonough's empty suit. Close your eyes and he is the carbon audio copy of McDonough.

2007-04-16 15:14:17
50.   yankz
All right, next comment after me fixes the thread.
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2007-04-16 15:21:10
51.   yankz
Fine, I'll do it.
2007-04-16 15:21:34
52.   Will Weiss
I'll give it a shot, yankz ... Production quality goes to YES (I can say that now without bias). There picture and audio are clearer, the camera shots are better, and in terms of broadcasters, less obvious homers in the booth. Losing Sean McDonough hurt the Sox. It was similar to Marv spouting the truth about the Knicks and MSG acrimoniously shooing him out the door. ... For name value of announcers on TV, go with the Yankee team. ... While I'm not exactly a fan of Joe Castiglione on EEI, the addition of Dave O'Brien is huge for the Sox. He was excellent on Channel 11 doing Mets games, and has been good for years on ESPN.
2007-04-16 15:21:45
53.   debris
Time for the other side to weigh in.

The two most irritating people in all of baseball broadcasting/writing since we were relieved of the misery of having to listen to Phil Rizzuto and Howard Cosell are Dan Shaughnessy of the Globe and John Sterling.

While the Sox radio team is a whiter shade of vanilla, John Sterling's love of beating the banal into the ground and talking down to his audience is almost as grating as his faux-Harry Caray coda to a Yankee victory. Has this man no shame? Has he no ability whatsoever to reflect on his own shallowness?

Dan Shaughnessy, on the other hand, insists on carrying the torch for the very worst tradition of Boston sportscasting. The CHB (curly haired boyfriend) worships at the altar of the late, but hardly lamented Dave Egan, the egotistical drunk who tried to run Teddy Ballgame out of town.

Murray Chass is Dan Shaughnessy, though not nearly as bright, nor nearly as vicious.

I'm actually fond of both TV crews. John Kay is much better out of the shadow of Sterling. I like Singleton, though not as much as Kaat. Jerry Remy, despite his occasional over-the-top folksiness, knows the game, is informative, and doesn't belabor in the Sterling/McCarver tradition.

WEEI vs. WFAN? Dunno, I can't listen to any of those morons for any longer than I can listen to Michael Savage.

Best place for Red Sox coverage: Rob Bradford at Curt Schilling's blog is fabulous. I've come full circle on Schilling. Where he was once "an asshole, but he's out asshole," his blog is intelligent, thoughtful, and gives great insight into the thought that goes into each pitch.

Best place for Yankee coverage: right here. Alex and Cliff blow the drawers off any of the mainstream media coverage in either city. I haven't found a Sox blog to match.

Most enjoyable reading for Sox fans: the breastbeating that goes on here during Yankee losses and the wit over at

2007-04-16 15:32:39
54.   yankz
53 Whoa, where the hell have you been? Missed you for a certain 5 games last season.
2007-04-16 15:50:46
55.   debris
I was resting up for the ALDS.
2007-04-16 15:52:51
56.   yankz
"Most enjoyable reading for Sox fans: the breastbeating that goes on here during Yankee losses and the wit over at "

I'm shocked.

2007-04-16 16:09:02
57.   ric
"It turned out to be true -- all the big money contracts out (Manny still remains but not for lack of effort), the introduction of a version of money ball, and the occasional splash signing to keep the nitwits of the nation convinced they are still competing. In reality they are a real estate company and wannabe international baseball marketing conglomerate."

huh? what a miserable attempt to be funny or sound smart.

2007-04-16 16:14:39
58.   yankz
Wow, what's with all the Sox trolls coming out of hiding. Oh yeah- they won big today.
2007-04-16 16:39:36
59.   ric
Wow, what's with all the Sox trolls coming out of hiding. Oh yeah- they won big today.

why cant somebody be critical or call somebody out on a stupid statement without being called a troll? dude made a statement that made no sense. i didnt make a remark about errors or injuries. so take chill pill.

2007-04-16 16:43:28
60.   Zack
Yeah, i was gonna, say, debris, been awhile...three Sox fans in one thread, wowza, must be Patriot's Day thing...

I do really hope that Hawk comment was a joke, really, at least just say it was a joke to make me feel better about the world...

2007-04-16 17:03:41
61.   ric
"three Sox fans in one thread, wowza, must be Patriot's Day thing"

patriots day.. thats one theory.. or it could be the title/subject of the thread, Yankees v. Red Sox- The Media...

2007-04-16 17:04:00
62.   yankz
jayd doesn't need me to defend his/her comment, I'll leave that up to the poster, but you can "be critical or call somebody out on a stupid statement" without being downright insulting. Actually, you didn't even attempt to argue. Just the usual lame attacks.

Hawk Harrelson is the worst sportscaster in the history of games. I'd rather listen to Cher, or worse, Joe Morgan. The Texas Rangers guys are pretty awful, too; I once heard them whine about a very borderline call that went against the Rangers innings after it happened.

2007-04-16 17:12:59
63.   rbj
What was really annoying was having to listen to Rod Allen (Tigers) being so smug last year. With the team's good play last year he was always saying things like "Yup, that's how you do it."

Really Rod, with a team that was two years removed from a reverse 1998 Yankees, smugness isn't something you should practice.

And 53 debris, you are to be burned at the stake for your heresy "the misery of having to listen to Phil Rizzuto"

2007-04-16 17:15:47
64.   OldYanksFan
I am a New York Yankee in RSN Court (New Hampshire)
First rule of Radio:
Have a good voice (think Castiglione)
Second rule:
Be engaging (think Waldman)
Third Rule:
Appeal to a broad cross-section of people
(think Castiglione, Sterling, Waldman)

Really, where did they find these people?

I put Singleton and Remy as the 2 best of the TV group. Remy is NOT a play-by-play guy, nor does he want to be. He is honest, doesn't overblow every play (GREAT PLAY!... not). Singleton has it all.

Tom Caron is very good in the studio.
Hazel Mae... I'm in love. Sometimes she thanks me by wearing a sweater.

I don't think there's one female broadcaster in sports I really like. Just a matter of taste. But Hazel I like. Yes... she's a babe, and charming, but also speaks well with a good voice, and seems to believe what she says (as opposed to just reading lines).

When Hazel was first introduced, Sean McDonough had a big time crush on her. Remy would sometimes tease him, and he would giggle like a girl. It was pretty cute.

2007-04-16 17:54:48
65.   Shaun P
53 Nice to see you around again, debris. What did you think of Sean McDonough?

47 Andre, from what I understand, you and I might be the only people in all of New England who miss McDonough. Every Sox fan I know couldn't stand him. I do think its hilarious that, like jayd said in 49, that the Sox replaced him with a guy (Orsillo) who sounds almost exactly like him.

I'm contrarian, though. I might be the only guy in New England who preferred Trupiano to Castiglione (of course I didn't grew up with Joe, I grew up with the Scooter and White, who will never be surpassed as a broadcast team). I'm almost positive I'm one of the few Yankee fans who likes Suzyn Waldman. I continue to wish the suits would let her do play by play every so often.

I watched a Hawks-Bulls game from 1989(?) on ESPN Classic recently. Sterling was doing the play by play, and he was great - just like I remember back in the late 90s. I'm not sure when (or why) he became the black hole he now is, but I miss the old John Sterling.

The one Yanks-Orioles game last year that Ken Singleton called on his own proved to me, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that he's the best baseball analyst on TV right now. He and Kaat alone in the booth were a treat (Kaat's crazy rantings on pitch counts etc aside). I miss that.

2007-04-16 18:03:12
66.   Shaun P
Oh - one other thing.

Maybe space limitations at the park wouldn't allow this. But I think someday teams will have two (maybe more) broadcast teams, for TV/video and radio, and you get to pick the type of game calling you want. Want intellectual analysis and sharp play by play? Choose to hear Singleton and Girardi. Want talk show radio homerism? Select the broadcast with Michael Kay. Want cliche-ridden human interest stories, and don't care about PBP? John Sterling's broadcast is for you! And so forth.

So many teams put 'homers' in the booth because they think it brings in more fans. Or else they tell the announcers to act that way. (Will - are there any numbers that shows it does?) I just think there are so many people who'd prefer a more thoughtful take on the game. The team that recognizes this, and offers listeners/watchers a choice, will rake in the dough.

2007-04-16 19:01:06
67.   OldYanksFan
65 I too liked and will miss McDonough. He was better, more intelligent then Orsillo. Maybe I'm wrong, but I seem to remember the Sox games were broadcast on 2 different stations: Remy/Orsillo on NESN and Remy/Donough on Fox? Then, Fox was dropped and NESC now carries all games. I though McDonough might join Remy/Orsillo, but I guess not.

Was there some politics behind McDonough's disappearence? Was he just extraeneous?

Anyway, he was a very good PBP guy. YES could use him.

2007-04-16 19:53:49
68.   Bama Yankee
59 "i didnt make a remark about errors or injuries."

Yeah, I'm glad you never mentioned that.
Wait, you just did...

2007-04-16 20:02:24
69.   Will Weiss
Shaun P, I don't believe there is a means of measuring "homer" announcers and ratings. I think it comes down to network executives plugging in a guy, whether it's a PBP man or analyst, that can relate to the fans in one way or another. I'm not old enough to remember Mel Allen or Red Barber, but there's a reason -- but in listening to old games they worked, there was a clear "everyman" quality about them. Maybe it was the easygoing Southern twang. the same goes for Ernie Harwell, Vin Scully and Jack Buck.
2007-04-16 20:06:41
70.   Will Weiss
... Now, for the most part, with the national broadcasts, there's more of a premium placed on drawing in the "casual fan" and just shooting from the hip as opposed to breaking down the game. The post about Sterling becoming caught up in his own ego and catch phrases is an astute one. It's an epidemic. Announcers who are identified with a particular team parade themselves like they're bigger than the game, and it crushes their credibility.
2007-04-16 20:10:19
71.   Will Weiss
... What it really comes down to, though, as always, is $$$. Networks do not care about the viewers. They care about whatever means they can take to bring in more ad revenue. The other part to the equation is that there just aren't too many good announcers or analysts anymore. The majority of the content, regardless of the media outlet, is disposable.
2007-04-16 20:34:05
72.   Shaun P
69 Will, your point is well-taken. The more I tried to construct such an a scenario, the harder it got to measure it accurately. How well the team plays, and who the opponent is, and how well the opponent is playing going into a series, are some variables I'm not sure how to account for.
2007-04-16 20:40:13
73.   Will Weiss
In my opening, I mentioned the non-coverage of Jeter's defense. Well, let me say in reading today's papers and blogs, the crow tasted pretty good. (Although a side of fava beans and a nice chianti would have been a perfect complement. ... But I digress.) ... Rob Neyer and are really the only two people who have gone in depth. Neyer was especially good, as he always is. Check out is commentary from April 7 if you can, where he recounts verbatim a couple of interchanges between Kay and Singleton on plays where Jeter was in the wrong place. ... Great stuff. Makes me wish I'd DVR'd the game instead of celebrating my birthday. OK, maybe not.
2007-04-16 20:44:01
74.   Will Weiss
And as a qualifier, by non-coverage, I mean exactly what happened in the Kay-Singleton back-and-forth: the almost reflexive action to perpetuate the Jeter myth as opposed to looking at his play as a whole and not being afraid to call him out on his weaknesses. I'm as much of a Jeter fan as anyone else, but defensively, he hasn't been the same since going to his left since the Ken Huckaby injury. Age and the strain of not being able to truly fully extend have limited his range further. But as long as he can still make that patented jump throw moving to his right once a week, the other lapses will be masked. Or will they?
2007-04-16 21:00:27
75.   yankz
If this is still a problem at the end of the month, it's a huge story and something needs to happen. But I think it is some hidden injury- pinched nerve?
2007-04-16 21:54:31
76.   maineyank
I don't get YES up here, but I do get NESN. I think Remy is a good analyst and is usually fair. He gives the Yankees their due anyway. He is a red sock but not an unbearable homer (like the friggin' Hawk who is the WORST!) Orsillo is pretty generic and he just wears me out with his overexcited calls whenever Manny makes the miracle diving catch. He never seems to notice that the guy had to dive because he was either snoozing until the last second or just plain misplayed it. Overall though I think their in game coverage is pretty good.

Their studio guys on the other hand are just brutal. Every year Tom Caron take great glee in obsessing about any and all Yankee issues, and usually declares the Yanks dead by the first of May. They usually stop just short of saying the Yankees suck. And then when the inevitable happens and the sox fade, they look genuinely puzzled. What the heck happened? I take great joy in their consternation and look forward to more of the same this year. Jim Rice is borderline unintelligible. Mumble city. Eck can be pretty insightful and humorous though. And how the heck does he still look like he did when he pitched for the Indians anyway?

Radio side, I like Castiglione on Sox games. Waldmann and Sterling both kill me. Sterling with the same old "this isn't football" and "you just can't predict baseball" is as someone already mentioned, condescending.

Can not wait for this weekend!

2007-04-17 05:46:09
77.   yankz
Hilarious headline from the Post: "
2007-04-17 06:26:36
78.   jayd
67 Here is a blast from the past on the McDonough shenanigans, lest we all forget:


Will Sean Be Spanked if He Doesn't Apologize for Trashing Sox Front Office on New York Airwaves?

McDonough rips Sox brass on WFAN's Mike and the Mad Dog.

On Henry/Lucchino: " a large extent, they cannot afford to own the team... they have nothing left... John Henry doesn't want to reach in for more... this group is very PR conscious... their talk is hollow"

On going to the Mets: "I was too (hoping to join Mets team)... if I could do it all over again, I would"

On Colon: "If you've got a 5-game winner versus a 20-game winner -- you make the trade"

On the sale of the team: "the attorney general himself called it a bag job... Bud Selig wanted to keep it in the family, people who would vote for a luxury tax and revenue sharing... Joe O'Donnell and Steve Karp were perfect, incredibly wealthy... we'd have a new stadium built (by now)"

57 59 61 The problem with ric is that he can't admit that his team ownership functions as buttboys for Bud Selig in his war against the team of pinstripes, light and grace. RIC short for ric(kets): c.f. a Boston-based baseball disease resulting in softening of the bones, particularly in the cranium of sawks fans from year round use of lame-oh baseball caps.

True Red Sox Fans lament the day Sean McDonough fell in the forest because of his big city honesty. A day the knuckle-dragging nitwit nation rolled on, caps so snug on their heads no on noticed the bones slowly folding in upon themselves -- not until Heather Mae gets fired maybe and replaced by Janet Wu. (Poor Janet, former Boston TV Asian babe, now left to stand on the beach in Revere screaming obscenities during Nor'easters.)

Don't worry, Janet, I knew what you were trying to say.

2007-04-17 06:34:36
79.   Andre
One thing that made me like McDonough better was that he was on the radio opposite the "Big Show" on EEI. I can't stand the stupid "Whiney" awards. McDonough had the McDonough group for a while with him and a few other guys I liked. Then Michael Holley was on 1510 after McDonough left, and he was also better than the Big Show. After they both left, 1510 basically gave up and started focusing on boxing and baseball cards. I think there are a lot of people out there who dislike the Big Show, but there are not a lot of alternatives on radio drive time. ESPN with Mike Felger is great, but I can't stand to listen to his annoying sidekick doing the baseball post game show (I can't think of his name, but his voice may be the most annoying I've heard on radio, short of Suzyn Waldman).

I've got an hour commute to and from work so radio is key for me. I am able to tune in Mike & Mad Dog for about half my trip home (love that strong signal) but I tune out when they get into other sports. Play by play of a golf match on radio really doesn't do it for me.

2007-04-17 07:09:01
80.   Andre
Psyched to say that I scored tix to Friday's game (Pettitte vs. Schilling - should be a good one)!

Do I wear my Yankees cap and deal with ignorant meat heads around Fenway? Whenever I go to a SOX game with Yankees garb on, I feel like I'm taking my life in my hands over a baseball game. It seems like a much different atmosphere from the zero-tolerance atmosphere of the 21st century Yankees stadium.

2007-04-17 07:30:04
81.   rbj
80 Hold off until we take out a life insurance policy on you. A cool $1 mil sounds right. Just a couple of questions: do you have any pre-existing conditions, and do you smoke.
2007-04-17 07:33:48
82.   ric
jayd- you're a real mouthbreather... worst of the worst as far as fans go (prob spend your time throwing batteries and booing at the game)one thing i do know about sean mcdonough is that he is an alcoholic that would drive drunk regularly.
2007-04-17 07:43:02
83.   OldYanksFan
78 Wow. Sounds like a very honest and frustrated man. However, since the new ownership has turned the Sox around, I guess he had some very valid points.

You are a little harsh on Sox fans though. Business and politics have always been and will continue to be what rules the day.

Look at what Dave Winfield suggests in his book. All good stuff and VERY do-able. But will it get done?

2007-04-17 07:46:04
84.   debris
Must confess that I've never had trouble with Yankee fans in either Fenway or New York, though I do find it easier to find intelligent Yankee fans with whom to converse when at the Stadium. I also never sit in the bleachers in either park.

My Yankee hating goes back over 50 years to when I grew up a Dodger fan in New York. Listening to Red Barber, Vin Scully, and Mel Allen was a joy. Each called an intelligent, honest game, with great insight for the times. Both Scully and Allen learned the trade, of course, at the Red Barber school of broadcasting.

When the Dodgers moved, my only access to their games was listening to them at night on the radio from KDKA when they played the Pirates or KMOX when they played the Cards. I'd never heard a "homer" prior to listening to Harry Caray call a Dodgers-Cardinals game in 1958. As a 10 year old, I was shocked, shocked to hear an announcer calling a game as a fan of the team for which he was working.

I don't think anyone here has mentioned the Miller-Morgan team on ESPN. I've always loved Jon Miller and was sorry that his stay in Boston was so brief. He gave the keynote talk at the SABR national convention in SF some 7-8 years ago and was one of the most engaging speakers they've ever booked. Joe Morgan, just horrible at the outset of his broadcasting career, has improved dramatically. While I used to shudder at his every comment, I now find him enjoyable and engaging.

2007-04-17 07:50:26
85.   debris
regarding errors. While Derek "Past a Diving" Jeter's early season errors have come at particularly inopportune times, I think far too much is being made of them. So what if he makes 30 errors rather than 20? By year's end, his range, or lack therof, will turn a lot more outs into singles than his glove will turn outs into errors.
2007-04-17 08:28:22
86.   OldYanksFan
84 Nice to have a sane Sox fan back at the Banter.
2007-04-17 09:10:16
87.   ChuckM
Any more than 5 consecutive minutes of Joe Morgan has me reaching for the rusty screwdriver to jab in my ear. The sad thing is, I always thought Miller was one of the better announcers in the game-Morgan seems to have dragged him down...
2007-04-17 09:11:32
88.   Will Weiss
Debris, from a pure baseball perspective, you're absolutely right about Jeter in terms of the cause/effect relationship between his range and his error total. The point I'm getting at is that few, if any, New York writers and broadcasters will acknowledge that three straight Gold Gloves don't necessarily warrant calling him a great shortstop. As Rob Neyer said, it's about stating facts as opposed to feeding a myth. One philosophy treats the audience intelligently, the other doesn't.
2007-04-17 09:24:04
89.   jayd
82 You da man, Rickets. LOL with the battery throwing, you really trapped me there. Talk about quick comebacks, what'd it take you, 86 seconds?.

Ready for the weekend, lil' guy? These are must wins for the sawksers: if you can't take the Yanks out with their minor league pitching, you may as well hang it up for another year. Is Coco Crispee yet? I was surprised he wasn't wearing Pumpsie Green's number. Talk about shattering the race barrier 12(?) years after the fact...

HeHeHeHe. Matzusaka shinjimae konnayaroo!!! which is Japanese for Go Daisuke! Daisuke Mania or is it more Rickets softening your brain...

2007-04-17 10:10:12
90.   OldYanksFan
8289 Gentlemen, gentlemen, gentlemen. I am very much enjoying your intercourse, but I might ask you to understand that, while here at the Banter we encourage all dialog and opinions, we do try and succeed at maintaining a high degree of civility.

Name calling (while entertaining) is not a great idea. After all, with Sox fans on a Yankee site, we could all go a little nuts.

And I must say having two Sox fans here having a heated debate is almost as much fun as watching a 'chick fight' (sorry to any ladies here).

78 Certainly baseball 'office politics' is very interesting. If you have some articles or data to back up these statements, let me know.

And Will:
"it's about stating facts as opposed to feeding a myth. One philosophy treats the audience intelligently, the other doesn't."

How very, very true. But MLB does not want to treat up like adults. Just look at the national and local broadcasters. Have you seen the cartoon character they (is it Fox or ESPN?) use to explain baseball concepts to kids? And to boot, they do it really poorly, while talking down to kids.

I have 2 topics that I believe are important and could use long-lasting threads:

1) With all the hoopla over 'J.Robinson Day', it seems MLB is doing it's best to NOT inform us about what really went on: RE-Baseball and racism, how MLB encouraged racism, and some of the truly horrible aspects of what happened in those early days. Many younger people know that 'blacks had it tough', but have really no idea of the depth of the hatred and actions taken by people at the time.

Maybe MLB sees this as a 'dirty little secret', but I for one, would like to see some comprehensive, historical writing on this issue. Waving the Flag and saying "Gosh, ain't Jackie great" is not enough.

Why is it not enough? I just read one article where a CURRENT CF'er has heard fans call him racist names. Yup, we might still have guys in the bleechers calling people 'Nigger'.

This is too important to airbrush the way MLB has. Were are all the writers?

2) Dave Winfield made some very good, almost obvious suggestions in his book on how to vastly improve the MLB experience. Some where simply enough that they could be instituted in a week. Yet I'm sure they will be treated like an amendment to the Constitution, needing an act of Congress.

Really, how hard would it be for there to be 3 (or more?) players on both teams available every game for fan contact, Q&A, autograph signing, etc. I mean, could every player spend 15 minutes before the game, walking around the edge of the field, interacting with fans. Because we are fans, they are millionaires. Am I nuts? Is this too much responsibility for our 'heros'?

There is a lot written about how todays players are more selfish and less involved with the communities then 30 years ago. I don't know if its true, but it sure seems like it.

Does this have to be a fact of life, or can MLB make policies to have team personal more involved with and accessible to the public?

2007-04-17 10:14:52
91.   ric
jayd- ??? i like how you incorporated the "86" in there!
2007-04-17 10:33:48
92.   monkeyball
Rough Translation:

"Matzusaka shinjimae konnayaroo" == Matsuzaka, drop dead moron.

2007-04-17 13:26:36
93.   SF Yanks
21 This may have been covered but are you joking with your comments? I couldn't possibly disagree any more with you. The San Fran announcers are fantastic, as are the Red Sox anncouncers, as much as it pains me to say that.

Sterling is not funny.

White Sox announcers are the worst out there.

Please tell me you're kidding.

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