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MASN broadcast overhaul - Palmer, Thorne, others out

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Catching the replay of the Hays game winner last night made me really miss Gary Thorne.  Scott Garceau has that great professional voice and is beyond dependable, but you could have had Gary Thorne calling that play from an outpost bathroom in Antarctica and he still would have been losing his every loving mind.  Hell even Jim Hunter would have been going ballistic and selling the moment.

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11 hours ago, Frobby said:

Having watched or heard bits of several games on both TV and radio, I’m very pleased with this year’s broadcast crews, including the folks on the postgame shows. Scott Garceau and Ben McDonald have been very solid on TV — especially McDonald, who’s really good at passing along his knowledge and observations.    Bordick is much better on the postgame than on the broadcasts, and a big upgrade over Dempsey IMO.    Whoever he’s been paired with has been solid.     On radio, I’ve really liked what Geoff Arnold brings to the table, and Melanie Newman has been solid as well.    Overall, there’s a lot to like here.    

I agree here. Bordick's knowledge works much better with set up questions and he's been very good at giving some a good analysis and not just homerisms. Melanie Newman does an excellent job paired up with him as well. What I like about Newman is she really is a baseball "nerd" who really understands the game. 

Scott Garceau is one of the nicest guys you will meet, but he's still getting his feet under him a bit calling games and judging when to get excited over a flyball that eds up a flyout vs a 420 foot home run. McDonald has been a solid A- so far as a color guy. I've enjoyed his takes and he's not repetitive "right?" Exactly"" when responding to setups by Garceau.

I haven't heard a ton of radio yet, but Arnold is very competent and I liked Brown from last year. Newman needs a little more excitement in her voice for good events and calls the Orioles Baltimore which makes her sound like a national broadcaster. But, she's pretty competent in describing the action though sometimes she's a little too matter of fact with calling something like a inning ending 6-4-3 double play. She's got a good voice though and as I said before, very good baseball knowledge.

Overall though I agree, I have rarely wanted to turn off the broadcast or after game shows like before.

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I've liked most of the crews this year.  As others have said, Newman and Bordick are really solid on the pre and post game shows.  I absolutely love Ben.  His knowledge of the game and dry humor is spectacular for the broadcast.  While I like Scotty G a whole lot, he is not impressing on the play by play.  He doesn't get excited for the bog plays (watch the inside the park homer and the pop up from last night as exhibits A and B) and he makes enough mistakes to make Gary Thorne grimace.  It does make me reminisce to the days of Channel 2 in the 80's with Scott and Brooks calling O's games.  Fun times.

All of that said, I really miss Gary.  Listening to him call games is like sitting with your favorite uncle at the bar watching a ballgame together.  His excitement for the game and his humor are sorely missed.  I hope he's back next year. I'd love to see a bunch of games with him and Ben together.  

Oh, I did fail to mention, I love it when they cut to Palmer in his living room just chatting with the guys.  Good stuff.  

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In your most monotonic voice, Say “there’s a ball hit up the middle and it’s through for a hit.”

Now compare it with Newman saying the same kind of thing, and you’ll find the two voices are very similar. Newman May have baseball smarts but her voice is awful and she has neither personality nor energy not interesting commentary.

I miss Gary Thorne and Joe Angel a lot, but the radio team adds nothing to the game. I wish they wouldn’t ignore the qualities of a good radio person while looking for people for these spots.

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Palmer's amazing.  I'm not sure I've ever seen someone at 74 who looks as good as him.  And he still seems very sharp.  I hope he stays involved with the broadcasts at least till the O's have some success.  

No, hopefully that doesn't mean till he's 100.  

 

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1 hour ago, Philip said:

In your most monotonic voice, Say “there’s a ball hit up the middle and it’s through for a hit.”

Now compare it with Newman saying the same kind of thing, and you’ll find the two voices are very similar. Newman May have baseball smarts but her voice is awful and she has neither personality nor energy not interesting commentary.

I miss Gary Thorne and Joe Angel a lot, but the radio team adds nothing to the game. I wish they wouldn’t ignore the qualities of a good radio person while looking for people for these spots.

so true about Newman...boring, monotonous delivery...says things that make you scratch your head...example: the batter swings through the pitch and fouls it back to the screen...huh?...also bad at describing the nuances of a play...she may be a baseball nerd but she's not a very good play-by-play announcer...criticized her in a previous post and the ad hominem attacks came fast and furious...I have no issues with a female announcer as long as she is good at her job and I've heard several in various sports that meet that modest criteria...Newman doesn't IMHO.

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It's all personal taste.  For my money, no one beat Chuck Thompson.  I grew to like Miller, but I thought he spent to much time telling stories and not enough describing the game.  Scott Garceau makes a lot of basic mistakes on things like ball-strike counts, number of outs, not realizing a player had been replaced in the lineup.  But, I think he'll improve.  It's been a while since he's done play by play, and then it was the Ravens.

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That thing at the start of the radio broadcast where Kevin Brown meticulously describes the uniform each team is wearing, coloring, lettering style, trim colors, sock colors -- does nothing for me at all.   He says it so fast that even if I was trying to visualize the uniforms I don't think I could mentally keep up.   And I guess I really don't care.   I might be be mildly curious as to whether the O's are doing the Friday night black, or which hat they have, or certainly would want to know if they ever broke out the orange.   But that's about it.

I often work until 6:30 or 7 and am on my 20 minute drive home at the start of games so I heard this dozens of times last year and a couple times this year already, and it just does nothing for me.

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Just now, NCRaven said:

It's all personal taste.  For my money, no one beat Chuck Thompson.  I grew to like Miller, but I thought he spent to much time telling stories and not enough describing the game.  Scott Garceau makes a lot of basic mistakes on things like ball-strike counts, number of outs, not realizing a player had been replaced in the lineup.  But, I think he'll improve.  It's been a while since he's done play by play, and then it was the Ravens.

The other thing is you really have to give Garceau (and all of them) the benefit of the doubt on road games.   It's gotta be hard calling the game off a TV.   You can't follow the ball, you have to wait for the camera shot to change and then quickly pick up what's going on with the outfielder in that shot.

And they are at the mercy of whoever is controlling the MASN thing in the lower right corner that shows baserunners.   It's all they have to go on in a road game.   If that thing shows the runner still on 3rd and Scott gets confused about whether the guy came around to score or not, as I saw in one of the early games in Boston, I can't blame him.   He has no way to look at 3rd base and see if there's a runner there.

That said, he has made his share of gaffes, just as many if not more than Thorne used to.   And as many have pointed out, he doesn't make it very exciting either.

I always thought he did a good job on the TV games in the old days with Brooks as his color guy.   But that was a long time ago and maybe I was a less sophisticated and experienced listener back then as well.

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Garceau has been solid, IMO.  He mispronounces names though and it's a bit irksome.  I give Thorne a pass on that because I think he could read the phone book and make it sound delightful.  Garceau's voice is fine but it's not THAT fine.

McDonald is great.  And I love it when Palmer gets brought in.

I've heard Newman so far and she is bland.  I don't think she's terrible but she's a far, far cry from a Miller, Angel, Chuck Thompson, etc.

1 hour ago, Ruzious said:

Palmer's amazing.  I'm not sure I've ever seen someone at 74 who looks as good as him.

 

Botox and hair coloring.  Whoever did his work did a good job.  $%@#, I look older than Jim Palmer and I'm 38.

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1 hour ago, SteveA said:

That thing at the start of the radio broadcast where Kevin Brown meticulously describes the uniform each team is wearing, coloring, lettering style, trim colors, sock colors -- does nothing for me at all.   He says it so fast that even if I was trying to visualize the uniforms I don't think I could mentally keep up.   And I guess I really don't care.   I might be be mildly curious as to whether the O's are doing the Friday night black, or which hat they have, or certainly would want to know if they ever broke out the orange.   But that's about it.

I often work until 6:30 or 7 and am on my 20 minute drive home at the start of games so I heard this dozens of times last year and a couple times this year already, and it just does nothing for me.

When he started last year, Brown spent a tremendous amount of time talking about the food he was eating. It just made me want to strangle the folks who hired him. He’s not interesting to listen to in terms of what he says or how he says it, and what he chooses to say is so juvenile it’s insulting because the implication is that we as an audience will enjoy it.

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I complained several times last night about the radio broadcast. It was the first time this season that I listened in and it was horrendous. Perhaps they just had a bad night, but it was a REALLY bad night.

The dropped popup was described as a pop up in the infield. The pitcher was under it. He fell. The ball dropped. We tied the game. Now it was done with great excitement...don't get me wrong, but as a radio listener I had no idea what happened. Then there was a 5 second pause and the announcer excitedly proclaimed that Santander had scored and he couldn't believe that he was going on the popup. The announcer had actually forgotten there were two outs. Then he realized it, corrected himself and talked about that for a couple of minutes. That and the fact that it was an incredibly bizarre play. However, no one on the radio ever fully explained what happened. I had to find out by asking in the game forum.

That seemed to be how the entire broadcast went. It sounded like some college kids were announcing a high school game. Damn I miss Chuck and Jon.

 

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I want Jim Hunter, Gary Thorne and Joe Angel back (and more of Palmer). Listen to the excitement in their voices in these calls and then tell me that Scott Garceau and crew are any good: 

 

 

Compare to:

 

The Phillies announcers were energetic. Our guys sound sedate. Like they're on downers.

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I haven't heard much from our radio guys, but it's kind of hilarious how the MLB editors in this highlight reel had to pull in our radio broadcasters multiple times for the call when Scott Garceau is using a living room conversational voice to call a big play where the O's are scoring. 

Based on this, I'm satisfied with the radio crew. I just really hate Scott Garceau's complete and total lack of energy. Ben is a great color guy but I wouldn't want him calling the play by play either, he's also extremely sedate.

 

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19 minutes ago, allquixotic said:

I want Jim Hunter, Gary Thorne and Joe Angel back (and more of Palmer). Listen to the excitement in their voices in these calls and then tell me that Scott Garceau and crew are any good: 

Please no more Jim Hunter EVER.  Joe Angel is retired.  I expect Gary and Jim back next year.  I agree with Frobby and Tony.  I think the new crew has done very well under trying circumstances.  You are sitting in an empty stadium watching a TV calling play by play.  Ben McDonald is great.  I hope Brian Roberts comes back next year.  I like Melanie Newman.  Like Tony says she knows baseball.  She can work on her excitement at times but these are all new people she is working with again under unusual conditions.  Scott is fine.  Maybe I am unobjective because I know he is such a good guy but I think that comes through during the broadcast much like it does with Gary Thorne.  I like that this regime of the Orioles made changes in response to what fans told them.  They tried to make the presentation better and I think they have very much overall.  I am sure they will tweek the changes and make it even better.

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