Sunday media: More from Brian Anderson, on the pitfalls of dropping into a team’s season during the playoff run

Brian Anderson gives Vin Scully a hug as the two wrap up a Fox Sports Milwaukee interview in June, 2016. Find the clip on

Expanding on our Sunday media column post, Brian Anderson, TBS’ play-by-play man on Dodgers’ games throughout the National League first two playoff series, understands some of your pain.

He saw the Dodgers play all six times this season when they were up against the Milwaukee Brewers, the team Anderson covers regularly for Fox Sports Wisconsin. That includes Clayton Kershaw’s seven-inning, 14-strikeout game on June 2 in Miller Park.

He’s watched the SportsNet L.A. feed of the Dodgers with Joe Davis and either Orel Hershiser or Normar Garciaparra since it was clear to him in early September that he’d be doing the Dodgers’ NLCS series. He’s followed the career of Yu Darvish since his MLB career began in Texas — specifically since Anderson’s brother of five years, Mike, who got a cup of coffee as a Cincinnati Reds pitcher, is a Pacific Rim scout with the Rangers who was involved in Darvish’s signing. Anderson also got to call a Dodgers’ game on TBS in September that Darvish pitched.

But no matter how much you see, and hear, and experience, it’s not always easy to glean information that satisfies everyone involved.

“I always try to do my prep work from a baseball perspective,” said Anderson, a former St. Mary’s of Texas in San Antonio college player. “I have my brother, a scout and a great reference. I love to get scouting material. I’ll talk to third-base coaches as part of my normal routine and find out what they’ll be doing if balls are hit to certain outfielders. That’s very important to know when you have so much information available. Continue reading “Sunday media: More from Brian Anderson, on the pitfalls of dropping into a team’s season during the playoff run” »

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On the topic of ESPN making a mountain out of a Jemele Hill, plus who’s wrong and who’s wronger …

“Those who know, know. Those who don’t, it need not be explained. You’re here, I’m here. Let’s talk some sports.”
That’s now Michael Smith started the Tuesday episode of the 3 p.m. “SC6” SportsCenter on ESPN.
Why the long face again?

So we are digest and believe all the spin from everyone else on this, the suspension was:

a) Completely justifiable, and had nothing to do with race or gender,
b) Unjust because she was just doing her job,
c) Difficult to justify because there should be, in this case, a division of church and state (says the confused public editor/ombudsman)
d) Twitter fodder for jokes against ESPN:

e) A sign that ESPN is afraid of her,
f) Gross, and “the only thing grosser was ESPN’s disingenuous statement about it,” as it became messier and messier for the organization,
g) A business decision, but dripping in politics,
h) Hypocritical, and worth ranting about with a self-serving video,
i) A great move for Hill’s career (if you listen to Dan LeBatard),
j) Incidental, because she’s a bad fit for ESPN in the first place,
k) Something that could be contested through Connecticut labor laws … or maybe not,
l) More twitter fodder for jokes:
m) For no good reason,
n) Proof how little ESPN values Hill,
o) A reason to get Al Sharpton back (and if you’ve got his backing, how could you go wrong?),
p) A reason for Brit McHenry to try to get back onto someone’s radar,
q) A reason for Judge Mathis to try to stay relevant and get all judgy,
r) A reason for Frederick Douglas to take a stand:

s) A reason for Donald Trump to expose his lack of knowledge between a “mic” and a “mike,”
t) Basically, a paid vacation,
u) The opening for a new discussion about how this is a new social dilemma for journalists (although dilemma really isn’t the right word there … it’s problematic)
v) In no way related to anything Harvey Weinstein did or didn’t do,
w) A strange reason for Hill to make it sound as if she and Michael Smith were married:

x) A reason for Yahoo! Lifestyle to call this a double standard,
y) A reason for Vanity Fair to allow an “ESPN insider” remark: “We’re going through an unprecedented time right now. I don’t know if [ESPN management] is in an impossible situation or not, but it’s just a mess. I don’t know what the answer is.”
z) A reason for Hill to be reduced to the role of ‘angry black woman’
What does it all spell out?
C’mon, be careful using social media. Your bosses may be watching. And if you don’t like working for those bosses, find another job. Stop being naive.
Wouldn’t it be nice if life, like televised sports, had a seven-second delay? Then those journalists who used social media could perhaps stop harming themselves?
Those in the journalism field have their own spell-checks and accuracy balances. Ultimately, they need to be responsible, and authentic, to their audience and to themselves.
To be continued …

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Sports media notes version 10.12.17: More on the DP Show 10 year marker, TBS MLB, the Enberg podcast …

Leading into the weekend by looking back at the past:

We noted in last week’s media column — what smokes — how Dan Patrick and the Danettes celebrated the 10th anniversary of his syndicated radio show with a week in L.A. at the DirecTV studios in Marina del Rey.
It was fitting because he spent the first week of the show’s launch back in Oct., 2007, at the KLAC-AM (570) studios in Burbank, trying to pitch the idea to the rest of the country.
Where does it go from here?
Having spent 18 years at ESPN, Patrick doesn’t know if there’s another 10 years left in this syndicated show, but technology and other things could change that extends its shelf life.
We talked more about how soon he will be launching a curriculum for sports broadcasters at a Winter Haven, Fla., university.
Aside from that …
Q: Where has all the time gone?
A: I was talking to my wife about the first couple of years we spent in the attic (of his house doing the show before moving to a studio in Milford, Conn.) and she loved we were there. I’d always been at ESPN and now I was at home. But (moving and branching out), it’s best thing that happened to us. We didn’t have anything, and when you do get things, you appreciate it more.
Now a man cave in Connecticut, and New York, and a TV studio in L.A. … we’ve come a long way.
Q: Was L.A. really an important place to get a beachhead at the start?
Continue reading “Sports media notes version 10.12.17: More on the DP Show 10 year marker, TBS MLB, the Enberg podcast …” »

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NFL Week 6 in the L.A. market: So lets put Rams and Chargers (and Raiders) head-to-head and see how that plays out

It does the NFL no real good, if trying to establish the Rams and/or Chargers in the L.A. TV market, by putting a game up against them each Sunday.
When the Rams-Seahawks contest at the Coliseum aired on CBS last Sunday, for example, Fox was allowed to air Packers-Cowboys head to head. Truth is, Rams-Seahawks should have been a Fox game because both are NFC teams. But by dealing it to Fox, the net was able to get Packers-Cowboys in, and as a result, that game did a 8.6 rating/19 share and had 720,000 viewers in L.A., while the Rams had a 7.8 rating/ 18 share and 631,000 homes.
When the Chargers registered their only win of the season in the 10 a.m. window on CBS last week — a game relegated to sister station KCAL-Channel 9 — it had a rating of 4.6/12 share and 347,000 viewers. The NFL allowed CBS to show Panthers-Lions up against it on Fox, and it did better: 4.8 rating/13 share/373,000 audience.
(Add in the fifth game of the Sunday, Chiefs-Texans on KNBC-Channel 4 in ‘prime time’ east coast, and it was the second-most watched game in L.A. at 8.2/15 share/692,000 … but the Rams still had a better share. This is despite what “rankings” are posted elsewhere every Monday by others). Continue reading “NFL Week 6 in the L.A. market: So lets put Rams and Chargers (and Raiders) head-to-head and see how that plays out” »

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CFB Week 7 in the L.A. TV market: So we should be thankful USC gets into prime time this weekend? OK, we are

Maybe you recall last week how Washington Huskies head coach Chris Petersen threw some shade on the abundance of light-night games his team has had to play — including two 7:45 p.m. kickoffs on ESPN on consecutive Saturdays.
Maybe you missed Kirk Herbstreit on last week’s “College GameDay” trying to shed some light in an ESPN-esque sort of way.

“The reality is, as an advocate on this show for the Pac-12 for the last 20 years, wanting to try to bring as much exposure to that conference as we can, you should be thanking ESPN for actually having a relationship thanks to Larry Scott with the Pac-12 because your games are seen.
“Before, there was a black hole when it came to the Pac-12 and now, you can actually tune into the Pac-12 and see them if you live in the ACC or the SEC or the Big Ten. So I understand (Petersen’s) point — but be careful. Would you rather be on at 3:30 on the Pac-12 Network eastern when nobody’s watching?”
That does it. Washington must now play a game on Thanksgiving Day. At 7:45 p.m. And they must appreciate it.
The reality is, every conference benefits with ESPN exposure. And Fox. And even, to some degree, Pac-12 Net. And the conference benefits from the ESPN and Fox rights fees.
What Herbstreit said is 100 percent right, and 100 percent wrong.
Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott, who went on at halftime of last Saturday night’s Washington-Cal game, called Herbstreit’s comments “unfortunate.” ESPN eventually put up a graphic — a graphic — during the game to dispute the claim that late-night games don’t draw better ratings. Continue reading “CFB Week 7 in the L.A. TV market: So we should be thankful USC gets into prime time this weekend? OK, we are” »

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