Fox's opening sequence, oh so predictably, had to be made larger than life. It featured a history of baseball and an America lesson with voice-overs from presidential candidates John McCain and Barack Obama and actor Michael Douglas. The theme was baseball is an escape from our daily problems and issues. I wasn't even thinking about the war and the economy and the election until the piece reminded me of it. Why do networks feel compelled to make the World Series more epic than it is and more epic than it already is in the sports world?
It looked as if Philly's Chase Utley could have been called out on an 0-and-2 pitch in the first before his two-run homer, but the pitch was called a ball. It would have been nice to see a replay with the Fox Trax. A pitch later, the Rays'Scott Kazmir threw a ball in the dirt, and Fox, for some reason, decided to show that pitch on the Fox Trax. The best part of the telecast was listening to Rays manager Joe Maddon argue with home-plate umpire Tim Welke on what might have been a balk on Phillies pitcher Cole Hamels and listening to analyst Tim McCarver discuss it. Good, good stuff.
Worst starting time
These 8:30 p.m. starts are going to kill us all, aren't they? With so many kids and working folks wanting to watch, it is still frustrating that the games start (and end) so late. And why, when baseball can set the schedule, aren't there games on Friday and Saturday, rather than just Saturday? If baseball refuses to play any day games, the least the league could do is have games on Friday and Saturday nights (there is no game Friday) so most of us can sleep in the next day.
You have to listen really, really hard and really, really nitpick if you're going to find fault with Fox announcers Joe Buck, right, and Tim McCarver, both of whom got off to a good start in Game 1 and, you would expect, will continue having a solid series. Buck simply doesn't blow any calls, and McCarver is at his best when he doesn't try to get too cute with the puns, and he stayed away from that Wednesday.