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Volume 24 No. 156
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     The Baseball Network received a 6.5 rating and a 13 share in
Nielsen overnight ratings for its Saturday night debut of
"Baseball Night in America."  Viewership is down 13.3% from last
year's opener (Steve Zipay, NEWSDAY, 7/18). ....One NBC exec,
reiterating that the net is not interested in bidding on
baseball:  "It's not like we're losing something -- it's more
like, 'Yippie!'  Baseball is a declining sport" (ELECTRONIC
MEDIA, 7/17 issue)....HBO Sports has announced the hiring of
Nicole Watson, a reporter and host for Turner Sports, to join the
"Inside the NFL" team as a reporter.  Also, HBO's July 30 edition
of "Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel" includes a piece on Lenny
Dykstra produced by two-time Oscar winner Barbara Kopple (HBO).
The Dykstra piece includes his comments on the strike and his
belief that letting Fay Vincent go as commissioner was baseball's
"biggest mistake" (PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 7/18).