Cumberland Times-News

Mike Burke - Sports

May 2, 2014

Upon further review ... well, sort of

(Continued)

In the same spring training game, Nationals pitchers were shown getting their running in, going from foul pole to foul pole along the warning track, a common sight during spring training games, when F.P. gee-whizzed, “It looks as though they’re ready to run a marathon.”

To which Carpenter chimed, “A 162-game marathon?”

Ack! That’s Frasier Crane Christmas Parade banter.

The Nats broadcasts can be so camp, not unlike the 1960’s TV series “Batman”, that you sometimes wonder if MASN isn’t doing it on purpose. It’s like listening to Bruce Wayne (Carpenter) and Dick Grayson (F.P.). So if you like bad TV, have at it. If you want to watch the ballgame without falling asleep turn the sound down. You could listen to the Nationals’ excellent radio team of Dave Jageler and Charlie Slowes, but then you’d have to fight through the four-second delay between radio and television.

Just to point out that this isn’t just me, there is a website, www.awfulannouncing.com, that recently rated the 30 MLB broadcast TV teams, and Carp and F.P. came in at No. 27 (ahead of the Cardinals at 28, the Rockies at 29 and the White Sox at 30). The Orioles broadcasters, most notably Gary Thorne and Jim Palmer, came in at No. 3, behind only the No. 2 Dodgers (most notably Vin Scully) and the No. 1 Giants.

The Pirates broadcasters came in at No. 14, with the Jolly Roger raised high by Pirates fans for lead play-byplay man Greg Brown. I also like No. 2 play-by-play man Tim Neverett, who comes through with a smooth Skip Caray-type delivery (not nearly as ornery as Skip, though), with analysts Bob Walk, Steve Blass and John Wehner always making Bucs fans feel right at home.

Which, after all, as the great George Carlin once observed, is the point of life and of baseball.

Mike Burke is sports editor of the Cumberland Times-News. Write to him at

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