Baseball BeatOctober 11, 2008
"From a Manager's Perspective..."
By Rich Lederer

I don't know what I would do without Buck Martinez's insightful commentary.

P.S. - I can do without Chip Caray and Ron Darling, too, and, in fact, wish I had made a list of all their errors and nonsense tonight.


- Okajima is a situational lefty.

- Buck says Rays need to send Crawford to get back to their style of play (as if pounding HR's is inadequate), only to have Crawford picked off to end the inning.

- Caray goes on and on about the job Joe and Tim are doing on Fox. It's all about them.

There's three off the top of my head...

Sorry, I had my headphones on and enjoyed the game while listening to music, didn't hear a word they said. Doesn't look like I missed much. If I was smarter, I'd work on a device that would mute the announcers while leaving the crowd noise in.

Yeah Buck, let's stop hitting home runs and start getting back to getting picked off.

Buck Martinez sounds like the actor who portrayed the Senator in Godfather Part 2 - if there were a player named Corleone it would be so apparent that they would have to replace him.

Lowlight from last night:

Martinez on Papelbon entering the game: "It's obviously postseason baseball. Francona never would bring in his closer to pitch in a tie game on the road during the regular season."

I'm glad the rest of the baseball-watching universe is now being subjected to the horror that is listening to Skip Caray broadcast baseball. He's got none of the talent his late father (and grandfather, for that matter) had. None of the wit, none of the intelligence.... About all he's got is enthusiasm, and even that often gets him in trouble when you're listing on the radio and he gets really excited about a "high fly ball hit hard to left field!", because often as not, it's just a can of corn.

So yeah. He sucks. :-)

Matthew: I find Caray's excitement on fly balls annoying as well. I truly believe he wants so badly to make Jack Buck call on a Kirk Gibson that he over does it on every ball hit in the air.

Martinez thinks if you haven't managed before that you just don't know anything. He is not only putting all of us down but trying to elevate himself at the same time.

Here are a few of his gems from last night only:

* How many times did he say that you can throw out the regular season data when it comes to the postseason? I didn't know that Longoria, Pedroia, Youkilis, and Bay played so poorly during the regular season.

* TB has won and lost "x and y" number of games when Longoria gets an RBI and has won and lost "a and b" number of games when he doesn't get an RBI. Wow, no kidding. TB does better when they score runs than when they don't. I mean, get real.

* In the seventh inning when Coco Crisp was on first base, Buck said the SB was going to decide this game. Riiiiiiiiight!

Ron Darling, Yale University (on Francona having gone through 72 pieces of gum by the top of the 8th): "That's eight per inning."

My personal favorite from last night. Caray reminding us that tomorrow is an off day for "both" teams. Really-that's good because if one of them had to play today-it might be a disadvantage. But really the worst thing about watching the games on TBS are the never-ending Frank TV commericals-esp. when there were three games in one day.

What got me the most was the "homerism" these announcers gave us. After years and years of having to deal with the crap McCarver and Buck fling at us with their NY homerism on FOX, I was looking forward to a nice, unbiased broadcast, but for some reason these guys are clearly pulling for the Rays.

I won't go into too much detail, but one terrible example is with scoring plays. Every Red Sox run was met with a mundane, unenthusiastic description, including both of Pedroia's home runs being described live as "[monotone] fly ball...and it's out of here" (even though I was 100% certain the second homer was gone the moment it left the bat).

On the other hand, listen to the home run calls for the Rays...shades of "THE GIANTS WIN THE PENNANT!"

I can't believe I'm saying this, but I'm looking forward to listening to FOX again...

Did you know the Red Sox score a lot of runs with two outs? It's been underreported according to Chip Caray. Except when the Red Sox score.

Why is every good play by the Red Sox the result of "experience" and the Rays it's an example of "exuberance?" Can't they both just be playing well because they're actually good at baseball?

Let's not forget Rich that Buck Martinez is the same guy that managed the WBC team full of great American players that could not get out of the Quarterfinals? The only reason Team USA got out of pool play in the WBC is the bad call by the umpire on the appeal play against Japan.

That call that Caray makes when ever a ball is hit to the outfield is so annoying as well "swung on and belted"