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The Yankees and Red Sox will be all over national TV in the early going

Mar 17, 2014, 12:37 PM EDT

red sox and yankees logos

Awful Announcing crunched the numbers for nationally televised games in April. Hope you like the Yankees and Red Sox:

No less than 17 Yankee games will be airing on ESPN, MLB Network, and Fox Sports 1 in April – that’s 63% of their 27 game April schedule. Not to be outdone, the Red Sox will have 15 of their 28 April (and Opening Day on March 31st) games on those same national networks – that’s a cool 54%.

I get it. They draw ratings. And unless you can think of a better way for the networks which broadcast baseball to make money other than by getting the highest ratings, there’s not a great argument against this. At least a great objective one.

Subjectively? It gets to the point pretty early in the season where, if I see the Yankees or Red Sox on TV, I watch something else, because I’m sick of them. I’m obviously outnumbered in this regard, but that’s the way I feel.

  1. paperlions - Mar 17, 2014 at 12:41 PM

    Sun rises in east, water is wet, wine and cheese complement each other nicely.

    • dillongeeescapeplan - Mar 17, 2014 at 12:50 PM

      A bear just pooped in the woods.

      • nbjays - Mar 17, 2014 at 1:16 PM

        And the Pope is still Catholic.

      • infieldhit - Mar 17, 2014 at 1:37 PM

        The Pope got so irritated by the TV schedule that he accidentally dropped an F-bomb in Italian.

  2. psunick - Mar 17, 2014 at 12:43 PM

    You’re not outnumbered by me. I am totally sick of them. I can tolerate either one of them against a third opponent, but against each other, I always change the channel.

    • spudchukar - Mar 18, 2014 at 7:50 AM

      The networks need to capitalize on Boston and New York markets while they can. By June, when those two teams are struggling for the cellar in the AL East, their luster will have worn off. Give it time. Soon they will be irrelevant.

  3. baberuthslegs - Mar 17, 2014 at 12:48 PM

    I’d rather watch Major League Baseball than most of what’s on TV these days.

  4. ltpm3 - Mar 17, 2014 at 12:48 PM

    As long as we aren’t seeing and extended farewells to Mariano Rivera. I am sure we will now have a year of farewills to Jeter….enough already. The Yankees are the only team that does that ….. why?

    • Rich Stowe - Mar 17, 2014 at 12:55 PM

      actually, the Braves did it for Chipper when he retired…

    • beachnbaseball - Mar 17, 2014 at 1:22 PM

      The teams the Yankees visited last year felt compelled to honor Rivera. The Yankees didn’t coordinate it. If those same teams feel obliged to honor Jeter, so be it.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Mar 17, 2014 at 1:28 PM

        Rivera spent last year spending time with the concession workers, the ticket agents, the bat boys, the ball girls, clubhouse attendants, etc. That’s what Rivera wanted to do, to thank those people who often aren’t thanked. Other teams want to give him gifts and it’s all of a sudden the Yankees fault?

        People have some warped senses…

    • anxovies - Mar 17, 2014 at 4:06 PM

      Because they are the Yankees and he is Derek Jeter. Next question?

  5. 18thstreet - Mar 17, 2014 at 1:02 PM

    I think this *partially* explains the declining ratings for the postseason game. When Oakland makes the playoffs, the casual fan doesn’t know anyone on the team. (Hell, the ANNOUNCERS don’t know anyone on the team, which is a separate issue.)

    There are so many teams out there who are more interesting than the Yankees are right now. I mean, other than Tanaka and McCann, I’m not interested in seeing anyone on NYY.

    The Jeter farewell is going to be very, very sad. They’re going to keep trotting him out there, and he’s going to bat .220 with no power. They’ll award him another Gold Glove and he’ll get three 6th place MVP votes anyway, and the national announcers will say he’s the same player he’s always been. He isn’t. And it’s going to be awful to listen to the palace guards pretend he’s just suffering through a little slump, but His Calm-Eyed Leadership Intangibles make it all worthwhile.

    • NatsLady - Mar 17, 2014 at 1:42 PM

      You missed at least a half-dozen oppotunities to call him “The Captain.” Somehow The Captain makes great plays but only Jeter grounds out to second base.

    • gymtruthteller - Mar 17, 2014 at 5:31 PM

      Don’t forget all star MVP for doing NOTHING

      • 18thstreet - Mar 17, 2014 at 6:18 PM

        Really? You’re annoyed by an undeserved All-Star Game MVP? I mean, they all play — at most — a couple innings. No one is really most valuable.

  6. stevequinn - Mar 17, 2014 at 1:04 PM

    Great. Now I don’t have to subscribe to Extra Innings.

  7. tfbuckfutter - Mar 17, 2014 at 1:13 PM


    Did they just say the Red Sox were “not to be outdone” and then point out that they have fewer games and a lower percentage? Do they think 54% if a bigger number than 63%?

    Am I reading that wrong?

    • proudlycanadian - Mar 17, 2014 at 1:14 PM

      No. You are not reading that wrong.

    • rje49 - Mar 17, 2014 at 3:39 PM

      Well, ya see, 9% is not quite enough to be “outdone”, but only in a figurative sense. 10% would have been totally outdone. Maybe I’m wrong, but I can’t think of any other explanation….

  8. proudlycanadian - Mar 17, 2014 at 1:13 PM

    I will get to see those teams only when they play the Jays. The Toronto home opener is against the Yankees. I am excited to see the Yankee infield in action..

    • infieldhit - Mar 17, 2014 at 1:27 PM

      Is that “in action” or “inaction”?

      • proudlycanadian - Mar 17, 2014 at 1:32 PM

        One or the other. I will be surprised if the Yankee infield is intact for the majority of the season, so it will be fun to see it intact while I can.

    • therooneyskilledwebster - Mar 17, 2014 at 1:50 PM

      How dare you question The Captain!

    • bigharold - Mar 17, 2014 at 3:16 PM

      “The Toronto home opener is against the Yankees. I am excited to see the Yankee infield in action..’

      If I were a Jays fan I’d be excited to see the Jays, .. but then again, were talking about the Jays so there’s really not a lot to get excited about.

      So, carry on and continue your hopeful schadenfreude day dream.

    • rje49 - Mar 17, 2014 at 3:40 PM

      Ah! Wheelchair ball!

    • proudlycanadian - Mar 17, 2014 at 6:53 PM

      I see that the Yankees were rained out today. It appears that most of their hitters are still working on things. Kelly Johnson has a .296 BA followed by McCann at .269. and Gardner at .250. Roberts is at .217, and Soriano at .200. Ellsbury at .174, Beltran at .143, Teixeira at .143 and Jeter at .133 are below the Mendoza line. Some of the starting pitchers are having a fine spring. Nova with a 5.40 ERA and Kuroda at 6.45 are the exceptions. I assume that those 2 do have decent “peripherals”. I am sure that Yankee fans and the Networks are supremely confident that those abysmal statistics will improve once the season begins. If they do not, the TV ratings might drop sharply.

  9. beachnbaseball - Mar 17, 2014 at 1:19 PM

    “If I see the Yankees or Red Sox on TV, I watch something else, because I’m sick of them.”

    I’m sure they are heartbroken that you’re sick of them, Craig

  10. nbjays - Mar 17, 2014 at 1:21 PM

    PC, was that space between “in” and “action” a typo? Because “inaction” could describe the Yankee infield better than you might expect.

    • proudlycanadian - Mar 17, 2014 at 3:34 PM

      As in slow motion. I will miss most of the opening series due to an ankle operation, but expect to be home in time to see the remains of the Evil Empire.

  11. ironyisadeadscene - Mar 17, 2014 at 1:24 PM

    This is how I feel about the Miami heat and Pittsburgh penguins too

  12. chaseutley - Mar 17, 2014 at 1:32 PM

    Another reason why I’m glad that I got rid of cable..

  13. Detroit Michael - Mar 17, 2014 at 1:36 PM

    Doesn’t matter. Most of us watch our local MLB telecasts, not the national ones, anyway, as Craig has so often noted.

    • scoutsaysweitersisabust - Mar 17, 2014 at 4:18 PM

      There are two different types of fan bases. The die hards who will only watch the local MLB telecasts, or the casual fan who will watch whatever is on Fox Saturday/Sunday afternoon. Those are the fans that MLB is chasing as they are the ones are trying to convert into die hards. But that’s difficult to do when less than 1% of the league is getting shown on television.

  14. schniz61 - Mar 17, 2014 at 1:38 PM

    MLB TV baby! Except on those damn Saturday FOX exclusives. Bastards.

    • misterschmo - Mar 17, 2014 at 1:50 PM

      As a Sox fan this is bad news. The national broadcast bumps the MLB.TV broadcast right off the air.

    • babyfarkmcgeezax - Mar 17, 2014 at 2:24 PM

      I believe the new contract between MLB and Fox eliminates the Saturday Fox blackouts on MLB.TV beginning this season, if I’m not mistaken.

      • scoutsaysweitersisabust - Mar 17, 2014 at 4:15 PM

        Either this season, or next. What it doesn’t eliminate is the local broadcast blackout. So I still can’t drop cable tv since I’m blacked out of watching my two local teams for 3.5 hours after the game ends.

    • anxovies - Mar 17, 2014 at 4:16 PM

      I hate it when the games are blocked by the national broadcasts, or worse, when the Yankee games are televised nationally and I am forced to listen to Buck et al., or some ESPN shill. Audio from the radio is no solution, they are never in synch and you get that time warp feeling after a few minutes.

  15. rockthered1286 - Mar 17, 2014 at 1:45 PM

    I was going to complain about the AL East getting no love unless you wear pinstripes or… red…socks… but then I scanned the schedule: the Orioles have 10 games of the 27 (11 if you include their March 31st opener). Granted 5 of those 10 contests are either against the BoSox or Yanks, but there’s some Jays action in there, along with Twins, Tigers, Rays and Royals. And we get a fair shake on home versus away nationally televised. So yanno… perks of playing in this division I guess.

  16. henryd3rd - Mar 17, 2014 at 2:11 PM

    Oh snap! I was hoping to see the Mets Vs. Marlins. Well; I guess I’ll manage

  17. happytwinsfan - Mar 17, 2014 at 2:21 PM

    they’re saving the best for last. twins – royals september steel cage match !!!

    • infieldhit - Mar 17, 2014 at 5:18 PM

      They’ll find a way to get the Yankees into that one too for a Triple Threat Match.

  18. nananabooboo - Mar 17, 2014 at 3:14 PM

    Better than having to watch CrapLanta.

  19. xjokerz - Mar 17, 2014 at 3:39 PM

    hands down, the most over-rated ” RIVALRY ” in sports.

  20. scoutsaysweitersisabust - Mar 17, 2014 at 4:13 PM

    This may further the cause of lining the pocketbooks of ESPN, Fox, and MLB networks, but it does a disservice to the sport as a whole. It also hinders growth in the sport, and the overall popularity of the sport as the rest of the league is not getting the attention it deserves. I get that New York and Boston are the two biggest markets. But there is an entire country out there that could get exposure to the rest of the league. This is one of the differences between MLB and the NFL. People will watch ANY NFL game. But people get pretty sick and tired of watching Boston and Yankee 4.5 hour snooze fests every week.

    • gymtruthteller - Mar 17, 2014 at 5:28 PM

      If other teams brought in the ratings they would get the air time. You do realize it isn’t the Sox or Yankees fault your teams fans don’t support their team.

      • scoutsaysweitersisabust - Mar 17, 2014 at 5:50 PM

        Faulty logic. Boston and New York are the two largest markets. It’s not about fan support, it’s about population and advertising revenues.

      • gymtruthteller - Mar 17, 2014 at 6:07 PM

        It is about fan support. Fans equal ratings. Watch the games when your team is in it and you get more games. Its that simple.

      • scoutsaysweitersisabust - Mar 17, 2014 at 6:19 PM

        No, it really isn’t. It’s about how big the market share is and how much advertising dollars there are to spend. You are using third grade logic that is incredibly simplistic. Live doesn’t work that way. Padraighansen broke it down exceptionally well below me, in a reply to a similarly ignorant comment of yours.

  21. shanabartels - Mar 17, 2014 at 4:39 PM

    As a Yankees fan who watches all the Yankees games regardless of what network broadcasts them, I loathe the national-only broadcasts on Fox and ESPN because the broadcasters are idiots. Thankfully only three games this April are going to be like that. The rest of them are mostly MLBN showing the local broadcast outside of local coverage area, as far as I can tell. And I’m sorry if that annoys you. But please understand that it annoys me just as much to tolerate an abundance of Joe Buck. I’d be delighted if Fox and ESPN mangled the broadcasts of other teams more often and left my team alone.

  22. gymtruthteller - Mar 17, 2014 at 5:27 PM

    Stop whining. If your fans watched the games when your teams were on they would show you more often.

    You think Red Sox fans want to listen to the Yankee butt kissing BS on ESPN like ever? Hell no. Bring on NESN any day of the week. Everyone I know would be perfectly happy if Fox and ESPN NEVER aired a Red Sox game ever.

    • padraighansen - Mar 17, 2014 at 5:42 PM

      There are only a handful of fan bases that can affect the change by “watching the games”, as you put it. It’s all about the huge media markets – so it will always reign supreme with the northeast corridor, including Philly, NoCal & SoCal, and possibly Atlanta. The one exception to that should be Chicago, but the Cubs & Sox are often left out of the national broadcasts.

      Let me put it another way: If the Red Sox were the Minneapolis Red Sox, you’d never see them on TV. Not because they aren’t good – but because of the media market they’re based in.

      If you need further proof, I give you the NY Knicks, who are going to lead the NBA in nationally-televised appearances this years with 33 – more than the Clippers, Thunder, Heat, tied w/ the Bulls, Warriors, or other much, much better teams.

      And for the record, the 33 NYK appearances are nearly double that of the Indiana Pacers (17).

      • gymtruthteller - Mar 17, 2014 at 6:10 PM

        The Knicks get the rating because their fans watch. The Yankees could be from timbuck two and if they had won 27 titles they would still have bandwagon fans and would still get the ratings.

        In the end its about fans supporting a team. When the Sox play on ESPN the Sox fans NOT in Boston watch the games hence they get the ratings.

      • scoutsaysweitersisabust - Mar 17, 2014 at 6:27 PM

        Again, it’s not about “Fan Suppport” or whatever you want to say to boost your own ego and help define your allegiance. It’s about Market Share.

      • padraighansen - Mar 17, 2014 at 6:36 PM

        Agree to disagree. The Knicks are on, not because they’re good (they’re horrible), not because their fans are that loyal (they aren’t), it’s because of numbers. If 10% of the NYC metro watches the Knicks, vs. 75% of Indianapolis watching the Pacers, NYC will still be the bigger number.

        It also has something to do with the team they are playing, obviously. Sometimes, it’s a win-win (Red Sox – Yankees, Lakers-Knicks, Clippers – Nets, etc.), sometimes it’s purely for fans of the sport (Spurs-Pacers, Thunder-Grizzlies, Tigers-White Sox, etc.).

        The Yankees success has no doubt made them both the most beloved, and reviled, MLB team. They are what the Cowboys are in the NFL via polarization, and the Packers with their historical significance.

        But if you seriously think it’s about fans supporting the team, please pass what you’re smoking. It’s all about advertising reach to target demographics, and therefore, all about the numbers.

        The bigger the TV deals become, the less likely it is you’ll see a heavy dose of teams from small to medium TV markets, regardless of how good they are.

        We may root for laundry, but numbers know no such ideology.

  23. tonyz6060chevy - Mar 17, 2014 at 10:34 PM

    Being that most of L.A. can’t see any regular season Dodgers games on T.V. the Yankees and Red Sox are vying to become L.A.’s new favorite team with all their Media Coverage. It’s a Good thing Tanaka signed with the Yanks .At least Yankee fansa will get to see him pitch. if he had signed with the Dodgers,he’d still be a mystery

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