On the Postseason Roster: Caray and Darling

I was just reading Mark Newman’s article on MLB.com about the upcoming ALDS and the announcers who’ll be covering it. I found myself saying out loud, “Why do these games have to be on TBS?”
Never mind that I dread having to sit through promos for comedy shows I wouldn’t watch in a million years. What bothers me is that the playoffs are baseball’s premier sporting events and TBS hasn’t exactly established itself as a premier sports network. Their cameras are rarely in the right place at the right time and their announcers always sound as if they’ve parachuted in from another galaxy. Having them cover a game is like letting the Food Network do it.
Handling the play-by-play for the Yankees’ series will be Chip Caray.
He seems like a nice enough guy, and he certainly comes from an impressive lineage of broadcasters. But when Derek Jeter steps to the plate, do I really want to hear the story of the scouts who spotted him as a skinny kid and said, “He’s gonna be a star someday?” Or how Mark Teixeira signed with the Yanks because he idolized Mattingly as a boy? How Mo is a future HOF-er despite only throwing one pitch during his entire career? Oh, and how the Yankees have the highest payroll in the history of life? Don’t Yankee fans already know all of that?
Their color analyst will be Ron Darling, the voice of the Mets on SNY.
He’s a smart guy, having gone to Yale, and knows his baseball, having been an elite pitcher. He also knows New York, so we won’t be subjected to: “Golly, this is a big city.” I can live with him, as opposed to Buck Martinez.
If there’s a more irritating voice on television or radio, I haven’t heard it.
(Warning: Do not listen to the entire video or your ears will explode.)
Buck sounds like he’s wearing one of these, doesn’t he?
I realize that no broadcaster alive has the magic of Vin Scully. I also understand that TBS is reaching out to a national audience. Would I have preferred that the MLB Network take over the games and put Bob Costas behind the mic? Sure. But since it’ll be TBS or nothing, I’m hoping that they’ll do their homework this year, give us truly in-depth coverage that tells us stuff we didn’t know before, and avoid the following:
1) “Very Funny” promos that aren’t.
2) A zillion close-ups of Dr. and Mrs. Jeter, any Steinbrenner and Kate Hudson.
3) A discussion of whether or not Joe Girardi will be fired if the Yankees don’t win the World Series.
4) The Joba Rules.
5) The sentence: “Sabathia is a horse.”
I can’t ask for more than that.


  1. hseely@twcny.rr.com


    Our only hope for fair and balanced coverage is John & Suzyn. They report; we decode. But anything — anything — is better than Yankee-hater Jack Buck, who must sleep in a pillow stuffed with Jacoby Ellsbury’s stolen undergarments. Keep it up. You are doing the Lord’s work, ma-am. Best, el duque

  2. TribeTed

    Jane – if your wish comes true, then so will mine!! I am not so pleased with these announcers either. I went through 30 seconds of the video and had to stop. You nailed the next line where you said “It seems like he’s wearing one of these.”

    He is one of the most annoying broacaster’s off all time. Thank god the Indians have good broadcaster’s. Matt Underwood I swear is one of the best play-by-play announcers you will ever stumble upon. You gotta listen to him. New post up.


  3. diane.anziano@gmail.com

    I couldn’t agree with you more, Jane. The “American Idol” judges would be better! I know we can’t have the YES crew so we’ll just have to deal. But if it gets as bad as we expect, it might even be better to throw on the radio.

    In the end, all we want is a ring! How it happens and how it is broadcast is out of our control but we have to win #27!! GO YANKEES!!!!

  4. mel.tmottbg@gmail.com

    At least we are spared one round of Tim “I can prattle for hours about nothing” McCarver or Joe “When I played on the big red machine . . .” Morgan.
    Back in the good old days, we used to be able to shut the sound off the national TV broadcast and put The Scooter, Bill White (the best ever!) and Frank Messer radio broadcast on for the sound. With HD and other enhancements, the radio broadcast is now a few seconds ahead of the picture.

  5. yankeesgirl

    Don’t forget the”accidental” shots of Minka that happen every time Jeter does something . Why not leave Buck in the Studio and get Boomer in the Booth? I’m in YES turf so I haven’t heard David work a Yankee game but based on the one Phillies (or whoever it was) game one of my residents made me watch at work (I was forced to watch baseball how awefull 😉 ) he would do a pretty good job

  6. ooaooa

    Even though John Sterling is slipping a bit and we don’t care at all for Suzyn Waldman (our picture with her did come out nice) they are our best option throughout the playoffs. As bad as Caray and Darling and that group may be, Buck and McCarver are a step down even further. Lets home John Sterling gets hot in the playoffs and Suzyn doesn’t “try to do to much”!

  7. ladyjane303

    I occasionally tune in to Mets games if the Yanks aren’t playing. We could do a lot worse than Ron Darling – he’s actually pretty good. Your Food Channel reference makes me wonder if Emeril might be a better alternative than some of the announcers we’re going to hear. Imagine it: “Tex swings – BAM! It’s outa here! That’s kicking it up a notch!” On second thought – nah…. Where’s Al Leiter when we need him? Not looking forward to listening to future rounds on FOX or ESPN. If only there weren’t that time delay with radio being a couple of seconds ahead of the TV feed. Meanwhile, sending good thoughts to CC for #20 tonight.

  8. Jane Heller

    El Duque, you’re right about John & Suzyn, naturally. But the delay! The radio is ahead of the picture (or sometimes the other way around) and I find it very disorienting. I’ll give TBS a try. If the start in about the Yankees and the payroll within the first six seconds, I’ll switch to J&S.

    Glad you’re happy with your local broadcasters, Ted. I wish all our local TV guys (and women) could participate in their team’s playoff games.

    The “American Idol” judges. HAHAHA. I didn’t think of that one, Diane. We do have radio as a backup, and the main thing is getting through to the next round….and the next….and winning the ultimate prize. But one game at a time.

    Oh, Melissa. I miss the Scooter so much! Sob! He was one in a million. And you’re right about McCarver. He makes me want to poke out my eyes. I wonder why it’s so hard to find broadcasters who don’t annoy us? Are we really that hard to please? Or is the talent pool that bad? I like the guys on the MLB Network, so why can’t we have them?

    Yankeesgirl, I think Boomer is fine in the studio. A little bit of him goes a long way. But I’d need to hear more of him in the booth to have an informed opinion on this “weighty” subject!

    LOL, John. Sterling needs to get hot in the playoffs and Suzyn needs to try not to do too much. Hilarious. I’ll keep that in mind while I’m switching back and forth between TV and radio.

    UGH, those Frank TV ads were awful, cheshirecat! Even if that guy did great Bush impressions, would I really want to watch his show? And yes, let’s think good thoughts for CC getting #20 tonight. He claims it’s not important to him, and relative to a championship ring I’m sure that’s true. But I bet he’d still like to have 20 wins.

    I think Darling will be fine, ladyjane. He’s an intelligent guy with NY experience, as I said, and we could do much worse. Emeril would be a hoot though! I’d love to have Leiter and the other MLB Network guys. I thought the whole purpose of starting their own network was to broadcast the big games. Wrong. Anyhow, on to more pressing matters and CC’s start tonight. I, too, hope he gets #20.

  9. Jane Heller

    Great duo, Buz. But Vin’s the best. I love when I’m driving along the freeway and happen to catch him doing a Dodger game on the radio. Just a whole different caliber of announcer.

  10. dschaub@gpo.gov

    …and to think, Buck (Martinez) was once a MANAGER?! Poor Jays…almost the dumbest choice ever, but NOT the first skipper to/from the broadcast booth…remember the Padres when they hired their broadcaster to manage…an ex-Yankee (as a player and announcer)…Jerry Coleman? Nevermind…it does drive me “batty” when the casual fans tune in…call that casual announcers TOO…but such is our lot as everyday followers…let’s just hope for no problemos this weekend, and go one “Mo” day at a time…speaking of omens, look who’s on SI this weekend!

  11. Jane Heller

    DEEP BROADCASTER’S VOICES are overrated, Paul. Per-fect dic-tion too. I like Vin because he describes the action without hitting you over the head with his opinions – and uses beautiful words doing it.

  12. Jane Heller

    Yup, Buck was a manager, Dave. Can you imagine being a player and having to listen to that foghorn every day? Ouch. And while I certainly understand why the announcers have to provide info for those who don’t follow the Yankees (or any other team) regularly, I wish they’d come up with analysis or info or interviews we wouldn’t normally see – something interesting, in other words! I saw that SI cover of Mo and swooned.

  13. rrrt

    Ugh! I hate watching games on TBS, for most of the same reasons as you. But Joe Buck and Tim McCarver are equally annoying. Maybe I should just mute it and put on the closed captioning.
    Remember your post back in the spring, about the tarot card reader, and how if we concentrated hard enough we would “manifest” our guys to victory? I’m still concentrating, are you? 😉
    Rants, Raves, and Random Thoughts

  14. Jane Heller

    Of course I remember my session with the tarot card, Sue! I spoke to her the other day and she reminded me to “manifest” the guys to victory. It’s so amazing how accurate her predictions have been so far. She said CC would be the Yankees’ ace. She said AJ was hung up on a problem and needed to trust his stuff more. She said Teixeira was the missing ingredient we needed. She said A-Rod needed to reinvent himself. Etc etc. So yeah, I’m still concentrating!

  15. Erin Kathleen

    I guess nobody likes the TBS broadcast crew. Yankee fans already know about scouts noticing Jeter, and Teixiera worshipping Mattingly as a child, etc., and no offense, but the rest of us don’t really care. It’s even worse when they try to cover smaller-market teams, they just spout the same cliches about “doing the little things right” and “being perennial contenders despite their small payroll”. Especially if that team is the Tigers, since neither cliche is applicable.-Erinhttp://plunking-gomez.blogspot.com

  16. raysrenegade

    I know they did a great job last season covering the Rays in both their series, and you hope with the long hisotry with the New York Yankees they can find endless information and bytes of information for the audience to snack on.
    The team is well-versed in baseball unlike a certain ESPN crew that will remain nameless to keep a migraine from starting in my head.
    You can expect great coverage, backstories and a plethora of unusual and pointless trivia and information that only true baseball fans can enjoy.

    I guess the best way to end this comment is to paraphrase the Chairman of “Iron Chef America” and just say “Enjoy”

    Rays Renegade


  17. Jane Heller

    You hit it, Erin. It’s the constant spouting of cliches that gets me, whether it’s your team or mine or any other. I want to expand my knowledge when I’m watching these games, but I guess it’s a tough task.

    Good advice, Renegade. I will enjoy it. Sure, I’m whining now, but once the playoffs start I’ll be more concerned with the games themselves, not who’s calling them from the booth.

    I’m with your father, cdriscol. The rotating technique sounds good. And it’s funny about Red Barber. I remember as a child not liking his voice either. I grew up thinking Mel Allen was “it” and nobody else could come close. But how any broadcasting executive could think Buck Martinez has a voice for this stuff is beyond me.

  18. cdriscol@twcny.rr.com

    I echo those who find Tim McCarver and Joe Morgan annoying. I can’t stand listening to their call of games, which happen all too frequently during the season. When that happens, I do what my father used to do when we watched the games together years ago. The announcers back then, Mel Allen, Red Barber and Phil Rizzuto used to rotate from tv to radio. Since my father couldn’t stand Barber’s voice, he kept a radio handy. When it was Barber’s turn on the tv, down would go the sound, and on would go the radio. All season, I’ve done the same thing. Listening to either McCarver or Morgan makes me want to put a foot through the screen, and after hearing Martinez now, I’ve already moved the radio into the tv room.

  19. mel.tmottbg@gmail.com

    Sue said >
    Wouldn’t work with McCarver, Sue. He’s so verbose, the words would cover the screen and you wouldn’t be able to see the game!

  20. travelingbballbabes

    The positive of this situation is Ron Darling. When I watch Mets games on SNY, he is the only saving grace. I want to say that I don’t know how Lisa can deal with those other two idiots, but let’s face it. The situation on Yankees radio is no better (at least for me). Ron Darling is a great commentator. While I am happy for him that he’s been doing a lot more broadcasting for national television, I am also displeased because this means he spends less time in the SNY booth. Yikes!

  21. Orangebird

    I found that interview to be interesting, this guy wants basebal in Africa to a big deal.

    And I have no problem with Buck’s voice. He does color commentary for the O’s when Jim Palmer isn’t working the game, he’s very knowledgable.

  22. Jane Heller

    I wonder if you’d enjoy Buck’s voice if he weren’t an Orioles broadcaster, Jordan. In any case, you’re the first person I’ve ever run into who likes it!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s