Playoff Baseball Blog
By Obnoxious John
It’s been a day or two since I’ve last posted here. A combination of life, the terrible performance of the Mariners, slow starts by the Huskies, Seahawks and no start by the Cougs has me following the exploits of family football players in Rapid City South Dakota, Smyrna Delaware and Madison Heights Michigan.
But now playoff baseball has gotten interesting. I’m sitting here listening to the Rays-Rangers (RnR?) play for the right to meet the Bronx Bombers. As any reader of my blog knows, the Yankees could never win a game again ever, and it still wouldn’t be good enough for me. But I digress.
So while the New York Multi-Millionaires await their next opponent I get to follow the game with two of the leagues better pitchers facing off, Cliff Lee for the Rangers and David Price for the Rays. While doing so, it’s my opinion that baseball is a game that is every bit as entertaining on the radio as it is on TV.
Of course the play by play announcer has to understand he’s on radio. I’ve noticed a lot of announcers seem to think we are looking at the game like they are. They lack the ability to describe the action in their own words. You get ‘ground ball to short, throw to first, runner out’ kind of thing.
The one working tonight, Dan Schulman does a nice job. You can see this play in your mind; ‘hard ground ball up the middle by Molina. Bartlett goes three steps to his left and makes a diving stop! Gets to his feet and easily throws out the slow footed Molina!’ We know how hard the ball was hit, where it was on the diamond, what the infielder had to do to make the play and how fast (or not) the runner is.
I was fortunate enough to live in southern California for several years and listened to Vin Scully call many, many Dodger games. He set the bar so high I’m not sure it will be touched. Of course we have to realize Vin cut his teeth on radio whereas today’s announcer has grown up with TV. The commentator of today probably doesn’t really grasp the idea of painting a picture in the listeners mind.
I recommend you try this method for the remainder of the baseball games. You can’t cheat and have it on TV with the sound turned down. One reason is there is a bit of a delay with technology and the sound is behind the picture if you try it that way. Besides you rob yourself of the opportunity to exercise your imagination. And at my age, that’s about all the exercise I get!
Now get out there and take one for the team!