Weekly media column version 04.05.13: More notes on Pat O’Brien, Fox’s MLB coverage, CBS’s Final Four and the Santa Anita Derby


What made it into this week’s sports media column:
The Q-and-A with Harrison Ford about his role as Branch Rickey in the upcoming movie “42” (posted previously on this blog on Thursday).

What made it into “What Chokes” in this week’s newspaper package:

== It may be a tossup as to what’s the most bizarre thing you can hear these days on 570-AM KLAC. There’s the ongoing ad with Mario Lopez pleading with listeners to bank their kid’s umbilical cord so it can be used for stem cell research. Or then there’s Pat O’Brien slurring and stammering his way through another unprepared interview before he finally tosses it to Steve Hartman to try to rescue him. How long before KLAC cuts the cord on the man still drunk on his TV success from years gone by? There’s enough O’Brien comedic fodder served up by KLAC morning man Jay Mohr, and plenty left over for KROQ-FM “Kevin & Bean” contributor Ralph Garman – especially after an O’Brien meltdown a few weeks ago when he challenged a Twitter follower on the air to meet him on the corner of Sepulveda and Ventura so he could show him a thing or two. “O’Brien’s gotta be, what, 60, and the Twitter kid is probably 9?” asked co-host Kevin Ryder.

What didn’t make it the paper, but could have:

== Jim Nantz calls his 28th Final Four with CBS, joining Clark Kellogg and Steve Kerr for the third time. Kellogg is at his fifth Final Four after replacing Billy Packer. Part of the Final Four coverage includes Jim Rome interviewing all four coaches together.

== ABC’s Mike Breen and Jeff Van Gundy call the Lakers-Clippers game from Staples Center on Sunday (Channel 7, 12:30 p.m.)

== The first weekend of Fox’s MLB coverage has Thom Brennaman and  Tom Verducci dispatched to Arlington, Tex., for the Angels-Rangers game (Saturday, Channel 11, 1 p.m.). Only 19 percent of the country get that one. Most see Yankees-Tigers in Detroit with Joe Buck, Tim McCarver, Ken Rosenthal and … wait for it … Erin Andrews. This isn’t an ALCS game that no one told us about it, is it? At USA Today explains, Fox’s plan is to get Andrews more involved in regular-season chatter. No wonder McCarver wants out after this year. A third Fox regional has Justin Kutcher and Eric Karros doing Cardinals at Giants.
Fox’s half-hour pregame with Matt Vasgersian, Harold Reynolds and Kevin Millar originates from the MLB Network studios in New Jersey.
Sunday, ESPN has the Angels-Rangers (5 p.m., ESPN2) with the Dan Shulman, Orel Hershiser and John Kruk trio, which debuted on the Dodgers’ home opener last Monday.

== Laffitt Pincay III, son of the Hall of Fame jockey, anchors the NBC Sports Network coverage of Saturday’s Santa Anita Derby (in a 3-to4:30 p.m. window, after the Wood Memorial). Pincay III will be at the Arcadia track along with analyst Randy Moss and reporters Donna Brothers and HRTV’s Christina Blacker.

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