Wednesday, May 26, 2010

The Producer

The Director deals with the "now".
The Producer deals with the future.
The Producer makes sure that video packages, soundbites, and graphics are ready at appropriate times during the telecast.
The Producer also controls the pace of the telecast. While the pace of the game is out of our hands, the pace of the telecast is orchestrated by the Producer.
The Producer really is a conductor.
Replays, full paged graphics, soundbites, flashbacks, and drop-ins (sold items) are all included into the telecast by the Producer. The trick is to insert these items as seamlessly as possible. By this I mean inserting these items without taking away from the game action.
This is almost an impossible task on our telecast with all the drop-ins that are scheduled but the Producer of Cardinals baseball, Mike, is one of the best at accomplishing this task.
Mike was on the top of his game tonight.
The Cardinals catcher, Yadier Molina, is the best catcher in MLB at picking off runners at first base. He made an unsuccessful attempt at a pickoff at first base tonight and, before the next pitch was thrown, Mike called for a replay of a successful pickoff at first base last season between the Cardinals and the Padres - their opponent in this series.
This was just a great sequence.
Tonight's game went 13 innings and lasted 4:13.
During the extra innings, Mike called for a flashback of a walk-off homerun against the Padres from last season by Colby Rasmus of the Cardinals. Colby was at the plate and the flashback was very valuable to the quality of out telecast.
The Padres won the game with a walk-off homerun in the bottom of the 13th.
Keep in mind that we had been covering this game for four hours and thirteen minutes. During long games such as this, the TV crew can become mentally tired.
The TV baseball crew for this game - after a 4:13 minute game - NAILED IT!!
When the game ended, the camera shots all captured the moment in a slightly different way.
The audio mix was sensational!
Mike called for the roll-out - "Red, then X, then B, then Y. All normal speed".
As I called out the tape machine roll-out sequence, I realized that the celebration on the field was basically over because the Padres had all run into the clubhouse. I was trying to decide which "wide shot" to use out of the sequence when Mike made his best call of the telecast.
"Red, then X,, then B, then Y, all normal speed, then Green slo-mo'd to break.
Here is what each tape machine played back:
Red - Low third camera from the home show on the homerun hitting left handed batter.
X - Tight centerfield camera (camera 6) on the swing.
B - Tight ball follow from high left field camera. (camera 5)
Y - Iso of the pitcher from our low 3rd camera. (camera 1)
These iso's were all run at normal speed.
Green - mid third base camera (camera 3) on a tight look of the third base coach's hand shaking the walk-off homerun hitter's hand and then following the hero to homeplate for the celebration with his teammates.
A great end to a long night!
Just like the San Diego Padres' hero, the Cardinals' Producer hit a homerun tonight.

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