Around the dials The color red is in more than ever at WTMV-Ch. 32. The Lakeland UHF station, which can be easily picked up on the Tampa Bay area, has added 15 Cincinnati Reds telecasts to a schedule already painted in St. Louis Cardinals colors. Ch. 32 will carry 34 Cards' games, beginning April 5 with a game against the Montreal Expos. The first Reds' appearance will be the following night when Cincinnati visits the San Diego Padres. Ch. 32 spokeswoman Debbie Brakke said that Ch. 32 also plans to add games from the Toronto Blue Jays and Montreal Expos when those teams' own TV plans are completed. Ch. 32 is available on most major cable systems locally, with the glaring exception of Paragon Cable. In areas where it can't be seen on cable, viewers may tune in the station through a TV's built-in UHF capabilities. All these plans are pending the season's timely start.
WPLA (910-AM) of Plant City has renewed its agreement to carry about 130 Reds games on radio this season. There had been some contingent rumors involving the station's switch to the St. Louis Cardinals.
The prospect of SportsChannel joining the Vision Cable lineup is "somewhat encouraging," according to Vision general manager Jim Waldo. "We're negotiating to possibly make it a mini-pay channel," Waldo said of the sports cable service which already is on most of the area's major cable systems. Vision serves Clearwater, Pinellas Park and unincorporated Pinellas County. "We want to do not only what is good for the customer, but what is good for Vision Cable investors," he explained of a proposed $5.95-per-month subscriber charge for SportsChannel. Vision viewers receive Sunshine Network without extra charge. "I'm frankly tired of hearing about it. I hope to get (SportsChannel) on," Waldo said.
Due to advertiser uncertainty over the upcoming baseball season, WTKN's (570-AM) plans to carry three games a week from an independent syndicator have been shelved. The PIA radio network, based in Chicago, had intended to distribute various games nationwide. WTKN will now determine if any replacement baseball broadcasts will be sought, said station program director Ed Hartley.
The sale of WSUN (620-AM) Radio by CBS to Cox Enterprises also has cast some doubt over whether WSUN will remain a part of the CBS Radio baseball package. Before the sale, WSUN had indicated it would be picking up just about all of CBS Radio's sports, including baseball on Saturday afternoons and Sunday nights, plus the All-Star Game, League Championship Series and World Series. Cox stations are known for their sports commitments, but Bob Huntley, general manager of WWRM and soon to be in command over WSUN too, would not speculate on the station's future in sports. Cox's WIOD in Miami has been one of a handful of Florida stations on the New York Yankees radio network. Tampa's WRBQ (1380-AM) is dropping from that network this year after two seasons and so far has not been replaced.
Dick Enberg, lately occupied with other various NBC network assignments, finally gets his first season's shot back on college basketball, rejoining his old pal, Al McGuire, on Saturday's Georgia Tech-Notre Dame telecast (4 p.m. Ch. 8).
Smitty's Sports Talk has vanished from WEND (760-AM). This is bound to have low listener impact since the program was short-lived and the station barely audible.