Have 30 Minutes? Baseball Tonight Will Provide News on All 30 MLB Teams
Each Sunday beginning April 11, ESPN’s Baseball Tonight will take viewers inside all the headlines in baseball, covering every MLB franchise within the 30-minute 12:30 p.m. ET program. Hosted by Karl Ravech, with baseball insiders Tim Kurkjian and Buster Olney, the show will provide at least one update per MLB team. Each week, there will also be a special guest. George Will, a Pulitzer Prize winner and passionate baseball fan who has published books on the game, will appear twice a month; Jim Rome will appear monthly; and a celebrity guest will appear once a month.
ESPN Axis Technology Applied to MLB
For the first time, “ESPN Axis” technology was used during an MLB telecast when it was introduced during ESPN2’s Opening Night game (New York vs. Boston, April 4). ESPN Axis is a virtual replay technology that allows analysts to highlight the locations and movements of players on the field. On Opening Night, it was used to showcase a double steal performed by the Yankees. ESPN will continue to use the technology on baseball throughout the season.
- moving the general scoreboard to the bottom right of the screen (previously top left);
- MPH speed information for each pitch;
- the ability to insert a “K” for strikeouts and “E” for errors;
- identification of pitchers warming up in the bullpen and batters in the on deck circle;
- showcasing detailed information on pitchers, batters and fielders.
Opening Day Memories
ESPN’s coverage of Opening Day included a spectacular “Web Gem” by Chicago White Sox pitcher Mark Buehrle,a pair of home runs by St. Louis slugger Albert Pujols, and Atlanta rookie outfielder Jason Heyward meeting lofty expectations with a home run in his first professional at bat.
Baseball Tonight Analysts Predict World Series Winners
ESPN Baseball Tonight analysts Nomar Garciaparra, John Kruk and Bobby Valentine made their World Series predictions during Sunday’s show – Garciaparra (Philadelphia over Boston); Kruk (N.Y. Yankees over Philadelphia) and Valentine (Tampa Bay over Chicago Cubs).