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John Smoltz, Fox’s New Ace Analyst

Jason Barrett

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John Smoltz is a Hall of Famer and World Series champion as a pitcher, and he long has seemed to be on a similar trajectory as a TV voice, working three league championship series for Turner in the early 2010s.

But as satisfying as that was, Smoltz did not get where he was as a player by settling. His goal was clear from the start of his television career: return to the World Series, this time as an analyst.

And so it shall be in October.

Late last year Fox announced that it would move Smoltz into its No. 1 booth alongside Joe Buck, where he will replace Harold Reynolds and Tom Verducci, who filled the role for two seasons after the departure of Tim McCarver.

“I believe that in everything that you want to do, if you don’t shoot for the top you’re short-sighting yourself,” Smoltz said. “I remember telling my agent when I first starting doing work for TBS I wanted to do the World Series. So whoever got the World Series (rights), that’s what I wanted to do. It’s the pinnacle of our sport. I love seeing the best of whatever sports has to offer. I didn’t want to just do the job to do the job.”

There is little doubt in baseball or TV circles that he is ready for the spotlight, given his playing resume, personality and broadcast experience. But Smoltz said he still has much to learn.

“I don’t have this thing licked,” he said. “I work really hard and I have a complicated life. It’s a lot more busy than I thought it would be, post-retirement. My simple rules apply in broadcasting, as they did in baseball. If I can’t learn from my mistakes, something is wrong. If I can’t laugh at myself, something is wrong. I’m still trying to perform and refine my craft. It takes me five hours every game day to get ready for a game. So it is not just relying on my knowledge. It’s trying to do the work to be as equipped as I can.”

He will work 15 regular-season games for Fox, 15 to 18 for MLB Network and 80 to 85 days in MLB Network’s New Jersey studios.

To read the full article visit Newsday where this article was originally published

 

Sports TV News

FOX Scores Another Big College Football Weekend

Saturday’s broadcast of Michigan-Iowa drew 4,198,000 viewers on FOX.

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Michigan-Iowa

FOX continues to grabs heaps of viewers for its prime viewing window of college football coverage.

Saturday’s broadcast of Michigan-Iowa drew 4,198,000 viewers on FOX. To date, thru five weeks of the college football season, Big Noon Saturday is averaging 5,767,000 viewers, the most-watched window in college football.

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Sports TV News

NFL Ratings on CBS Off to Best Start Since 2010

That number buoys the network to an average of 18.559 million viewers over the first four games of the season.

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Packers-Patriots
The Associated Press

The NFL of CBS is behemoth to start the 2022 season. This past weekend saw the more massive ratings for the network.

Sunday’s national game window, which was led the Patriots-Packers overtime game, averaged 24.647 million viewers which was the most-watched Week 4 window on CBS since 1998, when the NFL returned to CBS. It’s also a ratings increase of 8% from last season.

That number buoys the network to an average of 18.559 million viewers over the first four games of the season, CBS‘ best start to a season since 2010.

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Sports TV News

ESPN Asked NHL For More Games on Linear TV

“It’s something that ESPN pushed for. But to the extent that ESPN was looking to make an adjustment for Year 2, we’re pleased to have the ongoing exposure.”

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The 2021-2022 NHL season was the first of a new media rights deal that saw the league’s games air nationally on ESPN and TNT.

The 2022-2023 season will see more games on linear television, and NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman says that’s from ESPN’s insistence.

When asked by Sports Business Journal‘s Alex Silverman about a noticeably larger linear television schedule for the upcoming season, Bettman said “We’re happy to have it, but it’s something that ESPN pushed for. But to the extent that ESPN was looking to make an adjustment for Year 2, we’re pleased to have the ongoing exposure. Although, last year and the way things were balanced was a terrific year for us. Ratings were up, viewership was up, connectivity on all platforms for our fans was up. And ESPN and Turner have done an incredible job, and we’re grateful to be with them.”

Last season, ESPN and ABC only aired 28 games on linear television, 18 airing on ESPN or ESPN2 and 10 on ABC. 75 regular season games were exclusive to ESPN+ and Hulu.

This year, 52 games will air between the two networks with 37 games on ESPN or ESPN2 and 15 games on ABC. The Walt Disney Company has exclusive rights to 103 NHL broadcasts during the 2022-2023 season, including the opening night double header, the All-Star Skills Competition and All-Star Game, and the NHL Stadium Series.

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