ajc.com | Braves | Caray, Van Wieren on Turner South but not TBS
More brilliance from the suits. Only Joe Simpson and Don Sutton will work TBS games this year, as part of TBS’ attempts to “focus more on the opposing team and league-wide developments in an attempt to broaden the audience.” Because there’s that huge untapped audience of Florida Marlins fans out there dying to tune in to Atlanta Braves baseball. It’s moronic even for the people at AOL/TW. Most teams don’t have much of an audience outside their region, and in their region their fans will watch their own games.
Simpson/Sutton is the Braves’ worst announcing team anyway, rarely heard and almost never seen. (And I like Joe; he just needs to be controlled.) Get ready for an entire season of complaints about how pitchers are babied and never throw 170 pitches in a game anymore, joined with demands that Andruw Jones stop hitting all these home runs and start hitting more singles to right field. Pete and Skip get exiled to Turner South, which only seven households, all of them in the metropolitan Atlanta area, receive. I have digital cable and 120 channels, I get nine varieties of Showtime and six of the Discovery Channel, and I don’t get Turner South.
I was just looking on satellite dish lineups for Turner South the other day. I saw on the Dish Network site that it’s blackd out outside of the southeast. Dandy. They won’t even let me pay to see it.
Don is just too repetitious to stand for 810 innings this year. And when there’s activity going on, I just can’t stand how shrill Joe’s voice gets.
You want more balance? Unleash Skip to be honest about players. Don’t force nice Skip on us. Let him say what he wants about Vinny, or Hampton if he sucks.
As for losing Pete, few people know Braves history better. Sigh.
I’m one of the small handful who get TS, so let me gloat for a minute …
OK, that’s over.
Putting aside the TS part, I think the move is 50/50. I don’t like Skip. His schtik has long since worn thin and he doesn’t seem to enjoy being at the games. I will, however, really miss Pete. As Colin alluded to, he was wonderful weaving Braves history into the broadcast. He paid attention to what was happening on the field. And he seemed to enjoy the games.
Don & Joe are OK as colormen. Bland, but OK. I appreciate Don’s willingness to criticize Braves players. But as play-by-play men? Both feel a need to always be talking. Part of the beauty of baseball is the contemplative pauses between action. I don’t need to have that time filled with repetitive drivel.
Well put bamadan. Over the years I have come to appreciate the professionalism of Pete and he’s the one I’m going to miss because of his insights and knowledge of Brave history. I don’t mind Skip that much, even if he does think a lot of his own opinion and not much about that of the fans’. He’s still worth a few laughs even with his somewhat surly attitude.
I like Skip, but I can understand — somewhat — where they’re coming from there. But Pete? That’s dumb. Leaving aside that he’s the only one who can keep Sutton focused on the game, he’s not a big homer and he doesn’t take a lot of getting used to. I suppose they’d want Sutton national because he’s a big name, but how many people even remember Joe Simpson’s playing career?
Hey, Simpson is well-known in Kansas City as “The Guy Who Held Back Brett in The Pine Tar Game.”
This is an absolute travesty. I’d rather them clone Castilla and play him at all four infield positions than lose Van Wieren. Skip, I can live without, but I’ll really, really miss Pete.
(Pausing to make sure it’s not April Fool’s Day).
I honestly don’t know what they’re thinking. Pete and Don (who I apparently like more than most of the regulars on this site) are almost universally praised around the country as one of the best home team tandems in baseball.
I’ve lived in five different cities in Alabama and Mississippi in the last six years, and only once have I gotten Turner South on my cable system. We really should put together some sort of mass letter to the editor and send it to the AJC.
Ranking how I like the announcers:
So I guess it’s fitting that they exiled my favorite two and kept the two stinkers. It’s part of AOLs ongoing campaign to make Braves fans into Falcons fans.
The only good news, from my perspective, is that living in LA I rarely get home in time to watch the TBS games anyway, but I am able to listen to the games on the radio which I assume will be all Skip and Pete all the time.
I guess it’s all personal prefrence, but I watch and listen to a lot of baseball and I can barely stand to listen to Joe Simpson. It’s not quite to the McCarver level where it’s ruins my enjoyment of the game but it’s getting real close. Maybe I’m just spoiled by hearing so much Vin Scully.
The days of “1,2,3 nothing doing” are over. Skip’s dry sense of humor will be sorely missed as will Pete’s professionalism. One positive from this is that maybe Don and Joe can have more time to tell stories about Bobby Cox’s daughters’ softball games.
As much as I hate not having Skip and Pete on TBS, it will make the Turner South broadcasts improve tenfold. Did anyone else feel like part of Skip’s callousness the last couple of years was a direct result of his (what seems obvious to me) hatred of Joe Simpson? Whenever Joe was sick and he worked with Pete, he sounded much more lively and into the game.
I do not understand how eliminating Skip and Pete from the TBS telecasts will help to emphasize the opposing teams and broaden the audience for Braves televised games. What knowledge of other teams and their players do Don and Joe have that the other two are lacking? Is TBS going to instruct the broadcasters to stop rooting for Atlanta and approach the game as if they were on FOX or ESPN? The Braves have been criticized to being too bland. Now the announcers are going to be required to follow suit. It does not make sense.
I saw this news somewhere and came here to confirm. Wrong, wrong, wrong! Even for a longtime Dodgers fan, give me Skip and Pete! TBS is still the only baseball we see out here on a regular basis, and it has saved me from absolute boredom on more than a few occasions.
Who made this decision and why? Heads will roll!
The biggest disgrace since the Tiger’s got rid of Ernie Harwell.
re: Don. I do like his analysis, esp. with regard to pitching. He is just dreadfully repetitive from game to game with his cliches – man bunts and “Look at the reception in the dugout, just like if he’s hit a home run”. And the infamous “Not every hit comes off a bad pitch and not every out comes off a good pitch.” He’s going to need some new schtick.
I think this is a transition. I suspect they wanted to jettison Skip and Pete before now – likely as much as a cost cutting measure as anything else – this gives them a way to do it next year with less outcry.