I had been looking foward to the All-Star game for over a week. Recently, Comcast moved NESN-HD to own it's own channel, a channel which is no longer under my current programming package. I'm still angry about the fact that I'm going to have to pay another $30 a month to get the Red Sox again. So when I saw that the All-Star game was going to be on Fox and in HD, I was thrilled! Then I paused, because I remember that the ultimate poser of a sports broadcaster, Joe Buck, would probably be calling the game. That dude is a just a suit and voice with a mastery of the obvious. The things he says sometimes make me want to hurl my beer at the TV. But I figured I would stick it out since this was my only real option to watch a great baseball game.
Then Fox Sports opened the broadcast with one of the most amateurish displays I've ever seen for a professional sports event. The graphics were AWFUL and the concept of people across the US stopping to watch the night sky to watch these Carebear-like stars flying across the screen just made me cringe. They used every stereotype they could about people in different areas - for example, the California fans were all pretty O.C. girls in bikinis soaking in a hot tub, and the guy from Texas was of course a lone grizzled cowboy on horseback, etc. And finally as we get near the stadium the bat boy clumsily drops his bats (what else?) while staring agape in amazement (although to me it looked more like a look of terror) when the stars crash into the field where the players who look like cardboard cutouts appear inside some of the worst looking explosions I've seen since the Nintendo NES.
During the game one of the players (Pujols?) had a rather good hit on a fastball that was really high. Fox producers were prepared ahead of time because they showed a quick video montage of his ability to hit the ball at any height. The problem was that the theme of the montage was "Head and shoulders, knees and toes." Seriously. With crayon graphics highlighting the various positions. They used a freaking children's song to show the prowess of one of today's greatest hitters. And of course, Joe Buck decided to repeat the phrase at least 3 times after the montage as if it were something catchy and cool to say. What the hell was Fox thinking?
And as if it weren't enough that Joe was commentating the game, and handling the ceremonies for the historic achievement award, he was in the commercials as well for a hotel chain! Agh! The only upside to these commericals was that poor Joe had to endure the admiration of his fans while waiting for the elevator or hanging out at the hotel bar. He looked truly uncomfortable. Know you know how I feel every time you open your damn trap, dimplechin!!!
Finally, the only worthy thing Joe managed to say all night was something about "[a player] was going to be a thorn in the side of the Astros". I laughed so hard because all I heard was "thorn in the side of the ass". haha
Update: I just read that Fox Sports has just managed to re-up their contract with the MLB for the next 7 years. I think I'm gonna cry.
ESPN news story