SBD/Issue 132/Sports Media

People & Personalities: "Sunday Night Baseball" Changes Praised

Writer Hopes Addition Of Phillips Will Bring
Spark Back to "Sunday Night Baseball"
In Albany, Pete Dougherty writes ESPN's "Sunday Night Baseball" broadcast crew had been "getting stale" in recent years, but the addition of analyst Steve Phillips to create a three-man booth with Jon Miller and Joe Morgan "may bring some spark back" to the telecasts. Phillips has "worked game broadcasts occasionally," but he "built his credibility through his excellent studio work." The three-man booth should allow Morgan to "focus on his strength, which is what's going on between the foul lines, and allow Phillips to handle many of the off-field issues." Dougherty writes Morgan's "lack of perspective gets exposed when he talks about matters such as replays and steroids" (Albany TIMES UNION, 3/27).

NOT GOING LOCAL: The Dodgers recently hired Eric Collins as their play-by-play announcer for select games this year, and in California, Jim Carlisle writes if the Dodgers were "going to hire another play-by-play man, they should have put him on radio" while keeping Charlie Steiner on TV. Carlisle writes putting Collins with analyst Steve Lyons "means I'll be hearing someone I don't know and someone I don't like." Carlisle: "On top of that, Collins lives in Chicago and it figures that's where he'll stay since all of his work for the Dodgers will be done in the Central and Eastern time zones. How will Dodgers fans take to an announcer who isn't even based in Los Angeles?" (VENTURA COUNTY STAR, 3/27).

ONE OF A KIND: In Philadelphia, John Gonzalez writes NHL Panthers radio announcer Randy Moller is "moving up quickly on my list of favorite play-by-play men." What makes Moller "unique, what makes him a cult figure, are his strange, funny, out-of-nowhere goal calls," as Moller "employs all sorts of unexpected lines from songs, movies, cartoons and commercials" (PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 3/27).

MEET THE METS' CREW: SportsNet N.Y. Thursday announced its on-air team for its pre- and postgame Mets coverage. Bob Ojeda will serve as the lead studio analyst and Chris Carlin will host the shows. Darryl Strawberry will serve as a contributing analyst throughout the ’09 season (SNY). In N.Y., Bob Raissman notes Carlin has "no experience in a baseball studio," while Ojeda "proudly admits to being a total TV novice" (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 3/27).

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