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Finn: Red Sox Potentially Changing Radio Broadcast Approach

Discussion in 'Red Sox Forum' started by Chad Finn, Dec 13, 2018.

  1. reggiecleveland

    reggiecleveland sublime Lifetime Member SoSH Member


    As an mlbtv subscriber since 2003 I listened to the home team crew until maybe 2013. Everyone on sosh bitched about Orsillo until he was gone, but most other teams announcers are unbearable. Tampa, Angels, entire AL Central are bad. Most of the radio crews are good though.

    Even the bItching about Smoltz and Darling during the playoffs was bullshit. Tim McCarver was good until the end too. He just had the misfortune {in Sox fans' eyes') of fox doing the post season during the Yankee Torre dynasty and said nice things about the Yankees when they were winning. Yeah at the end his approach was dated, but he was good "He didn't do it again did he?"

    I used to hate Buck Martinez during the early 90s, now Jay's fans bitch he has a man crush on Mookie Betts.

    People in Mbps bitch about Hubie Brown not knowing basketball. Hubie Brown? At coaching clinics all the other presenters Bill Self, CoachK, Billy Donavon, Roy Williams come back and listen to Hubie.

    Once in a while tube into a college access game and listen to the best broadcasting students try to do games. Even on a fairly big time setup like the Big 10 network they suck compared to the people that get on the air in a place like Boston.
  2. riboflav

    riboflav Member SoSH Member

    I'll say this. SoSH shows its limited knowledge of basketball when they go after Hubie. The guy is one of the top .02% of basketball minds this country has ever known. Among coaches he is as respected as it comes. His preparation and understanding of the game, situations, and players as both a coach and announcer is off the charts. There are few announcers I tune in for in any game but he is one. Basketball is my life and yet I learn something new from him almost everyday.
  3. CoolPapaBellhorn

    CoolPapaBellhorn Member SoSH Member

    Someone correct me if I’m wrong, but this isn’t available on every interface. I can do it on my laptop, but not on the iPhone app or the FireTV app.
  4. koufax32

    koufax32 He'll cry if he wants to... SoSH Member

    I do the vast majority of my viewing on my iPad and occasionally on the AppleTV. I’ll look for this feature on both.
  5. RedOctober3829

    RedOctober3829 Member SoSH Member

    Agreed. Hubie is as good as it gets when it comes to teaching the game of basketball. I love when he calls a Celtics game.
  6. Don Buddin's GS

    Don Buddin's GS Member SoSH Member

    Came here to say this. I encountered “Players Only” by accident once and couldn’t hit the mute button fast enough. It absolutely bit the big one.
  7. Wake49

    Wake49 Member SoSH Member

    I, for one, never bitched about Orsillo. I’d take him back over DoB in a heartbeat.
  8. section15

    section15 Member SoSH Member

    Probably not. It might or might not have been accurate at the time the original article was written, however.

    Then again , fan / listener concerns, and, more likely SPONSOR concerns, could have squelched the idea if it was under consideration..

    And, often, in many businesses - media is one of those businesses - a corporate entity might "fly one up the flagpole" to see which way the wind blows on an issue. And if the wind blows foul on the issue, a denial/retraction/"where'd you get that idea" can be issued.

    If you've ever worked in a large office - quite often rumors float around and they're usually *true* -- at the time the rumors float around.

    And if management sees that the fruition of the rumor is going to impact the business badly, they can deny the rumor without losing face.
  9. joyofsox

    joyofsox empty, bleak Lifetime Member SoSH Member

    It is available on my Roku, but not on my Apple TV device (which is annoying because the picture quality is so much better).
  10. joyofsox

    joyofsox empty, bleak Lifetime Member SoSH Member

    Re O'Brien, he often presents wrong information as factual. In the last two seasons:

    O'Brien said he thought Ty Cobb played against the Twins. (The Twins played their first game three months before Cobb passed away at age 74. Cobb had retired from baseball by that point.)

    O'Brien said Ted Williams had an OBP over .500 "five times in his career". ... But in one of those five seasons, Williams came to bat only 12 times. And in another, he played an entire game only 3 times. (OB mentioned TSW also having a .499 OBP a couple of times, so it seems he was looking at his career stats, though not very carefully.)

    Red Sox at Brewers, Mookie Betts begins the game with a home run. OB: "So the Red Sox on top just like that, 1-0." The Brewers scored five times in the bottom of the first and never looked back. OB, in the bottom of the eighth: "The Red Sox have never led and have never tied Milwaukee in this game."
    The next day, the Brewers scored two runs in the first inning. The Red Sox tied the game with single runs in the second and fourth innings. OB: "The Red Sox two and the Brewers two. The Red Sox have not had a lead yet, in this series."
    The day after that, Betts began the game with a double and scored on an infield error. OB: "And the Red Sox, for the first time in the series, have a lead." ... Boston still led 1-0 in the sixth. OB: "The Red Sox did not have a lead in the first two games here."

    OB: "That's the third time this season that JD Martinez has had a four-RBI game. It's the kind of thing that David Ortiz made his legend on." ... He sounded amazed about the three 4-RBI games. But at that point in the season (August), there were at least 14 batters with four or more 4-RBI games and one - Trevor Story of the Rockies - had driven in four runs in seven different games.

    In a discussion with Eckersley about Davey Lopes, O'Brien said: "The Dodgers won a lot of 1-0 games because he'd get on, steal a base, and someone would drive him in with a sac fly."
    Lopes played for the Dodgers for 10 years. How many times do you think the scenario OB praised Lopes for actually happened? (Hint: It was not "a lot".) It was zero.

    This is in addition to OB bombarding us with worthless factoids like how Chris Sale has pitched against the NL East, how Player X has a 14-game hitting streak against the Blue Jays, how the Red Sox (though trailing in runs scored) are "ahead in hits", or how great the Red Sox's record is when Sandy Leon has an RBI.

    O'Brien drives me friggin nuts - I could have made this post much longer - but my reasons for believing he is a sub-par announcer are neither "misshapen" nor divorced from reality.
  11. Lose Remerswaal

    Lose Remerswaal Leaves after the 8th inning Lifetime Member SoSH Member

    OH NO!!! Out of 100,000 facts O'B got a few wrong.

    Please listen to broadcasters for other teams and let us know how many of them are any better? It's not an easy job.
  12. Red(s)HawksFan

    Red(s)HawksFan Member SoSH Member

    Yeah, no broadcaster is going to be perfect. They're all going to make some mistakes, especially speaking extemporaneously for 3+ hours live on air. And in the flow of the game, there's not much value in going back to correct a misstatement, especially 2-3+ innings later.

    I can understand not really liking a broadcaster's style, but listing off mistakes like that to make a case seems a bit over the top and not so grounded in reality.
  13. charlieoscar

    charlieoscar Member

    Even in the days when Orsillo and Remy spent so much time nattering about what color ties and shirts they were going to wear, never did Orsillo make all the silly errors that O'Brien makes...wrong count, wrong score, wrong batter, even wrong team. And while I eventually was rooting for the break up of Orsillo-Remy, Orsillo was far superior to O'Brien.

    I grew up in an era when radio was the primary medium for following the game: announcers announced; then along came television and then instant replay and announcers started to become "personalities". There were ones I didn't care for: boring or being an extreme homer or even being a "personality". Dizzy Dean was one of the latter and would wander off into things unconnected with the game, but he was just being himself.
  14. Todd Benzinger

    Todd Benzinger Member SoSH Member

    The reason people got annoyed with Orsillo is that with Remy, he emphasized personality over a clear, well-paced broadcast. He knew the team and made fine calls on big plays, but he and Remy were also looking for an excuse to ignore the game and go into some schtick about themselves. Yeah, when he was doing the playoffs this year, he was miles better than almost anyone else (esp for TBS!), but he also wasn't doing his hilarious "pizza throw" BS. Back on NESN, would leave details of the plays to you--hey, there's a camera! And worse, he loved to ask the truck to play some stupid clip of fans or of him and remy AND WOULD MISS PITCHES AND PLAYS. Still, he was a solid annoucer--just wore thin.

    The reason people disliked Tim Nerveritt is that he never found a decent rhythm, would get a few beats behind and wind up making terrible calls along the lines of "he hits it...into the outfield...caught." For a radio guy, that is terrible because you don't know anything about what happened. Who caught it? Was it barely in the grass or on the warning track? TN also avoided saying the names of opposing fielders fairly often, going for "he" instead, which is again, terrible on radio and leaves you not really knowing what's going on. Worsening the situation, he was really really into rehashing ancient anecdotes (about himself knowing some baseball legend or whatever), and would often use the same one multiple times in a series. Finally, he had a weird, meathead old school attitude which didn't really fit with the modern game or with Castig, and he was constantly trying to get Castig to agree with him about how terrible all these modern stats are, etc. (Which Joe C would sometimes annoyingly do, probably just to throw him a bone, and hearing the two of them agree over over & over that shifts are ruining the game was BORING and DUMB; other times Castig would say "yess...." and then there would be an awkward silence).

    The reason people like O'B is that, despite having forgotten one Mookie leadoff HR, and peddling some unprocessed at a glance stats, he is great and pacing and interplay, never makes himself the focus, and does make sure anything important to understanding the game at hand gets cleared up or mentioned in a timely fashion. O'B prompts his partner, whether it's Eck or Remy or some weirdo, to do more color analyst when it's needed by asking them good questions, and even though it's tv, gives at least the basics on pretty much every play (except when they have those annoying in game interviews. Hate that).

    Darling and Smoltz... they are OK, but neither adds much. Smoltz talks way way too much about himself and his disapproval of the modern game. Darling is better but is a bit of a "let's go with our gut" guy after having a rep as a thinker from olden times, and he clearly loves the sound of his own mellow pipes.
  15. section15

    section15 Member SoSH Member

    Perhaps he was confused by the Alexander bio of Ty Cobb, which IIRC indicated that he ATTENDED the first Angels home game - which had the visiting Twins as the opponent in (Los Angeles) Wrigley Field. I'll have to look that up...
  16. joyofsox

    joyofsox empty, bleak Lifetime Member SoSH Member

    Besides giving fans distorted and incorrect information, O'Brien speaks with self-imposed authority, convinced he's The Undisputed King of Baseball Knowledge. Yet he clearly seems to make stuff up on the spot - and he never corrects himself (or no one in the truck bothers to correct him). Also, what I mentioned above is far from the extent of his bizarre statements. Here are some more from 2018:

    June 27: O'Brien makes a big fuss about how J.D. Martinez is the first Red Sox batter to have 25 home runs before the end of June. ... However, every season does not begin on the same day, so judging performance according to the calendar makes no sense. The 2018 season started on March 29 (the earliest Opening Day in history). When Ted Williams hit 25 HR by the end of June in 1950, the season began on April 18. O'Brien seems utterly ignorant of this difference.

    July 6: O'Brien proclaims: "The Royals have never lost more than 100 games in a season, although this team is on a pace to blow right by that, set a new club record." ... The Royals lost 100+ games in 2002, 2004, 2005, and 2006.

    July 25: O'Brien said it was "very rare" for a first-place team to increase its divisional lead during a road trip. ... At that point in the season, the Red Sox had improved its AL East lead in 5 of their 8 road trips (63%). From 2016-18, the Red Sox improved their place in the standings on 14 of 32 road trips (44%). If something happens almost half the time, it is not "very rare".

    July 26: O'Brien says Brian Dozier would make a "good leadoff man" because "he's hit a lot of home runs". He added: "He's hit 28 career leadoff homers ... a second baseman who packs a punch." ... Actually, Dozier has hit 114 HRs as a leadoff hitter. And he came into that game with the worst on-base percentage in Minnesota's starting lineup (.306). That OBP was only .008 better than Jackie Bradley. I don't think any announcer would push for JBJ as a "good leadoff man".

    August 23: O'Brien says the 2018 Red Sox "have had a lot of big hits on 3-0". ... At that point, the team had 110 PAs that ended on a 3-0 pitch: 105 walks, 3 outs, 2 hits. Two hits is not "a lot". ... This information is easily found at B-Ref.

    To these strange comments O'Brien adds nonsense "stats" and bizarre terms like "slide-in double" or referring to a fastball as a "swifty". ... He's simply Jonny Gomes or Steve Lyons with a better voice.


    Re Ty Cobb and the Twins:

    This was the on-air exchange:
    Bizarre. It's like saying that Babe Ruth hit 108 career home runs against the Oakland A's. ... Eckersley knows something is not right, but either he's not completely sure (though that has never stopped him in the past or he doesn't want to blatantly expose O'Brien. Also, if O'Brien was "looking" for an answer to Eck's question, as he says, why did he not find (and tell us) the right answer?

    That was the top of the third. In the top of the fifth, O'Brien addressed the matter:
    That's an awkward correction. How hard would it have been to say: "We were talking earlier about Dustin Pedroia's .360 career batting average against the Twins and how Ty Cobb was one of only two players to have a higher average. Of course, Cobb never played against the Twins, they began in 1961, well after Cobb's playing days. But before this team was the Twins, they were the Washington Senators - and it was the Senators that Cobb played against. Major league baseball considers the Senators and Twins to be one franchise."
  17. John Marzano Olympic Hero

    John Marzano Olympic Hero has fancy plans, and pants to match Dope

    Do you have a Dave O’Brien gaffe spreadsheet? Jesus, you seem a bit ... obsessed.
  18. joe dokes

    joe dokes Member SoSH Member

    This is insane, and I dont particularly like O'Brien on TV as much as I thought I would, but........EVERYBODY makes those calendar-type comparisons. As well as "before the all-star break" ones. If your point is "they all suck," then yeah. But that's not your point.

    When announcers say "career leadoff homeruns," they usually are referring to leading off the game, not as batting leadoff. And wouldn't you know it, he has 28 HR's when leading off the game.

    That's a .400 batting average. Yes, that's silly. But silly seems to be the coin of the realm.

    Speaking of .400, you noted 5 gaffes. At least 2 of them aren't.
  19. Al Zarilla

    Al Zarilla Member SoSH Member

    I was going to use the word vendetta, but without the violence. :unsure:
  20. reggiecleveland

    reggiecleveland sublime Lifetime Member SoSH Member

    This is like divorce lawyer level of detail and animosity.
  21. The Allented Mr Ripley

    The Allented Mr Ripley holden Lifetime Member SoSH Member

    Someone needs to get out more.
  22. pedro1918

    pedro1918 Member SoSH Member

    I'll give you that DOB used this stat frequently. I didn't make any notes or anything, but I remember him bringing it up frequently. But I also remember DOB stating the season started earlier this year. More than once.

    But I certainly did not write any of this down.
  23. section15

    section15 Member SoSH Member

    Well, ol' Diz did have a guy who "slud into second base"...

    The jazzed up format - I am now recalling that WBZ employed an announcer - Jimmy Myers - and even though 'BZ didn't have the rights to broadcast Sox games on radio - they did, kinda, sorta, not really, well just-a little - Myers would be in a remote portable studio out on Jersey/Yawkey - and watch the game on TV, and comment on it, and take calls from people who were also watching the game on TV.

    I don't think the format was very popular - I could see it, however, if you were watching the game on TV and wanted a little different background noise.

    Given the number of people who post in-game commentaries on various social media - such as Facebook, Twitter, and - for the most intellectual posts, Sons of Sam Horn - someone might have thought it would work.

    But some can only listen to a game on radio, for whatever reason (please don't stream games on TV and drive!) and would rather hear a straight conventional call of the game, as has been done since the days of Graham McNamee!
  24. Lose Remerswaal

    Lose Remerswaal Leaves after the 8th inning Lifetime Member SoSH Member

    Jimmy Myers should be on Boston Sports Radio again.

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