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Stadium’s Baseball Stories to Premiere April 10th

Brandon Contes

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Stadium announced an original 13 episode weekly interview series titled Baseball Stories, featuring senior baseball writer for The Athletic, Jayson Stark.

Each 30 minute episode will be available on Stadium’s linear TV channel as well as its digital platforms, with the premiere being Tuesday, April 10th at 7:00pm ET. Mark McGwire will be Stark’s first guest with the 1998 home run chase being the topic of discussion.

“The coolest thing about doing this series with Stadium is having the chance to sit down with a group of people who share an incredible passion for baseball and present it in a format that allows the world to see that passion as vividly as people inside the game see it,” said Stark. “On Baseball Stories, we’re going to let them tell their favorite stories, in their own words. And I’m really excited to play my part in letting the world hear those stories, in the kind of personal, informal setting you rarely see.”

Baseball Stories full schedule of guests:

  • Mark McGwire, San Diego Padres bench coach, 12-time All-Star, 2-time World Series Champion, 583 career homeruns (hit 70 HR in 1998).
  • Giancarlo Stanton, New York Yankees outfielder, 2017’s most-prized acquisition, 4-time All-Star and 2017 National League MVP.
  • Terry Francona, Cleveland Indians manager, 2-time World Series champion, 2-time American League manager of the year.
  • Max Scherzer, Washington Nationals pitcher, 3-time Cy Young Award winner, 5-time All-Star, 2,000+ career strikeouts, two career no-hitters.
  • Justin Turner, Los Angeles Dodgers third baseman, 2017 NLCS MVP.
  • Buck Showalter, Baltimore Orioles Manager, 3-time American League Manager of the Year.
  • Justin Verlander, Houston Astros starting pitcher, 2017 World Series champion, 2011 American League MVP, A.L. Cy Young Award winner, 6-time All-Star, 2011 pitching Triple Crown winner, 2006 A.L. Rookie of the Year, ALCS MVP, 4-time A.L. strikeout leader, two career no-hitters.
  • Hank Azaria, 6-time Emmy Award winner, current star of IFC’s acclaimed baseball themed show, Brockmire.
  • Josh Donaldson, Toronto Blue Jays third baseman, 3-time All-Star, 2015 American League MVP, 2-time Silver Slugger.
  • Dustin Pedroia, Boston Red Sox second baseman, 4-time All-Star, 2-time World Series Champion, 2008 American League MVP.
  • Adam Jones, Baltimore Orioles outfielder, 5-time All-Star, 4-time Gold Glove Award winner.
  • Jeff Luhnow, Houston Astros General Manager and architect of the 2017 World Series champions, 2017 MLB Executive of the Year.
  • Nolan Arenado, Colorado Rockies third baseman, 3-time All-Star, only IF to win Gold Glove in each of first 5 MLB seasons, 3 straight Silver Slugger awards.

Stadium began as an OTT service less than a year ago, before expanding to include a broadcast channel available in over 75 markets. The platform, which already offers live games and studio coverage, is looking to expand into more original content with Baseball Stories being one of its first projects.

Jayson Stark signed on with The Athletic this past February, publishing his first article for the platform on April 1st. The former ESPN reporter will continue as a contributor for MLB Network in addition to his work with The Athletic and Stadium.

Brandon Contes is a freelance writer for BSM. He can be found on Twitter @BrandonContes. To reach him by email click here.

Sports TV News

Kirk Herbstreit Energized, Not Worn Down By College GameDay

“I’ve been invigorated with this energy of the show and some of the different locations we’ve been to with the show.”

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Few in broadcasting have as busy of a schedule as Kirk Herbstreit. From announcing Thursday Night Football for Amazon Prime Video, to working as an analyst for ESPN’s College GameDay and Saturday night football schedule, the man stays busy. It would be easy to be worn down, but Herbstreit says he’s been energized by GameDay this year, rather than worn down, and pointed to new addition Pat McAfee as a a reason why.

“Pat has been huge for the show but for me personally, I can’t even describe what he means to me,” Herbstreit said. “For the travel and the fatigue. We’re in an era where I have four sons and their in their apartments in college and I don’t know if they have a TV. We’re in an era where nobody watches TV. It’s the damndest thing. They look at TV like I used to look at my parents and their radio.

“You look at everyone’s ratings and they’re going down, and you look at College GameDay and it’s the best 11 or 12 week start for the show. I’ve been invigorated with this energy of the show and some of the different locations we’ve been to with the show. It’s been a blast and it’s a year I’ll never forget.”

When asked whether Herbstreit was committed to his current schedule, he affirmed he’s locked in for the remainder of his contract.

“I’m completely committed. I think the part where people are like ‘Geez, you call a game on Thursday and a game on Saturday?’, then you throw in a three-hour show every week. I would never even let my mind think of that. I’m already think about what I wanna do after my five-years. Do I wanna stop working? Do I wanna just enjoy my family? Just do GameDay? Just do the Saturday night thing? I don’t know. I’m already think about ‘I’m on the treadmill for four more years’ and then see where I’m at at that stage of life. But it hasn’t crossed my mind to take something off my plate.”

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Sports TV News

World Cup Opener Delivers Big Ratings For FOX Sports

FS1 and FOX Sports streams accounted for 3.23 million viewers for the English-language broadcast of the opener. That number was 1.72 million in Russia four years ago.

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Many questions circled around the unusually timed 2022 World Cup and what it would mean for television ratings. FOX Sports saw a gigantic increase in ratings for this tournament’s opener compared to 2018.

FS1 and Telemundo combined for an audience of 7.23 million viewers for the Ecuador-Qatar opening match. That is a 128% increase from the Russia-Saudi Arabia match that opened the 2018 event.

FS1 and FOX Sports streams accounted for 3.23 million viewers for the English-language broadcast of the opener. That number was 1.72 million in Russia four years ago.

The broadcast on FS1 topped 43 of the 48 games from the group stage of the 2018 tournament.

In 2018, the event began in June with a 10:30 ET start. This year, the tournament got underway on a Saturday at 1:00 PM ET.

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Sports TV News

Charles Barkley Laments Loss of Michael Jordan Friendship As Biggest Media Career Fallout

“Michael got offended about something I said about him. And we haven’t spoken in probably almost 10 years. And he was my best friend at the time.”

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Charles Barkley

During an appearance on the Let’s Go! podcast with Tom Brady, Larry Fitzgerald, and Jim Gray, Inside The NBA’s Charles Barkley said the loss of his friendship with Michael Jordan has been the biggest downside of his media career.

Brady asked what the biggest issue has been with Barkley’s unlimited candor has been during his media career, and Barkley immediately turned to his relationship with Jordan.

“Michael Jordan, losing his friendship was probably the most prominent thing that’s happened to me,” Barkley admitted. “But I was being honest about what I thought. I said, ‘Listen, the toughest thing about Michael, he’s got to put better people around him.’ Because the toughest thing, when you’re famous, they’re on your private jet, you’re buying all the drinks, you’re buying all the dinners. Very few people are gonna be honest with you.”

Barkley was alluding to his comments made on ESPN 1000 in 2012 where he said Jordan had “not done a good job” in owning the Charlotte Hornets.

“I try to surround myself with people like, hey, if I’m screwing up, please tell me,” Barkley explained. “And Michael got offended about something I said about him. And we haven’t spoken in probably almost 10 years. And he was my best friend at the time. And I love the dude like a brother and we’re both stubborn and we haven’t talked.”

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