Saturday, June 30, 2012


The Redbirds lost to the Pirates today by the score of 7 - 3. The game at Busch Stadium was played with the temperature over 100 degrees. That was about the only thing hot about this game/telecast. Apart from an unbelievably great super slo-mo replay on an attempt by the Pirates centerfielder, this game did not offer much in the way of entertainment. There are very few games that could possibly offer less to a telecast than this game. There was a grand slam hit by the Pirates in the top of the first inning that teased of the possibility of an entertaining contest, but that is where the game ceased to provide even a speck of entertainment. A brutal day for the fans because of the heat. A brutal day for the TV viewers because of the game.

Full Responsibility

Yes, the Pirates scored a season high 14 runs and collected a season high 19 hits as they defeated the Cardinals 14 - 5 tonight in 3:09. And yes the Cardinals scored their 5 runs on just 7 hits. Yes, this was a good old fashioned butt whooping. The Pirates came into Busch Stadium and absolutely spanked the Cardinals. Do I give credit to a well-played game by the Pirates? You bet I do. Do I give them credit for the victory? No! The St. Louis Cardinals TV production team will take full responsibility for this brutal loss. This loss absolutely rests on the shoulders of all involved with the telecast. This loss was our fault. Let me explain. Going into the top of the 5th inning, the Cardinals were leading the Pirates by the score of 5 - 2. At this time we aired a graphic over Cardinals starting pitcher, Adam Wainwright, that pointed out the in his career Wainwright was 50 - 1 when given 5 runs of support or more. The Pirates scored 3 runs in the top of the 5th on a bases loaded double to tie the score at 5. To make matters worse, the Bucs scored the runs after the first two batters of the inning had been retired. After the Cardinals went down meekly in the bottom of the 5th inning, the Bucs took the lead for good with 3 homeruns in the top of the 6th. The Cardinals were sailing along rather smoothly until we aired that graphic. This loss was our fault. We take full responsibility.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Just The Way He Should Be - Invisible

There were some moments in tonight's game/telecast that were most noticeable: The Cardinals once again jumped out to a quick 1st inning lead (2 - 0). The Marlins tied the score in the 5th inning when their only walks of the game both scored. The Cardinals took the lead in the top of the 7th inning when back-up catcher Tony Cruz hit his first major league homerun. What was most noticeable about this moment was the fact that Cruz is from south Florida and many of his family and friends were in attendance. The Marlins took the lead for good in the bottom of the 7th with back-to-back homeruns. The second homerun came against a relief pitcher and had to be reviewed by the umpires. Looking back, however, the most noticeable aspect about this game was something that was totally unnoticeable - the home plate umpire. During the first two games of this series, the homeplate umpire played a big role in both contests. The first game featured the home plate umpire relaying the wrong information on a double switch by the Cardinals to the Marlins manager and the Marlins manager was ejected by the home plate umpire during the second game. Tonight's homeplate umpire called a great game and was invisible - just the way he should be.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Very Comfortable

The Cardinals scored 5 runs in the first inning tonight and cruised to a comfortable 5 - 2 victory over the Miami Marlins. Speaking of comfortable, this was the most comfortable telecast we have had in a while. There was a good flow to the show and everything clicked. For almost every telecast, both home and road, it may take a few innings or more before a comfort level sets in.
This was not the case for tonight's game/telecast. The comfort level was there from taping the three segment open until the final out. This game matched the life style of southern Florida - very comfortable.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Bizarre Strange Weird Huh?

The Marlins led the Cardinals tonight 2 - 0 going into the seventh inning in a fast paced, well pitched affair.
Then the weirdness began.
The Cardinals scored a run in the seventh on a passed ball making the score 2 - 1 Marlins.
The Marlins countered with 4 runs in their half which included back-to-back bases loaded walks.
The Redbirds picked up a run in the 8th inning when a Marlins player made 2 errors on one play.
Score 6 - 2 Marlins.
The Cardinals score 4 runs in the top of the ninth inning capped by a 2 out 2-run homerun.
The Cardinals then scored 2 runs in the top of the 10th with the second run scoring on the first major league hit, an infield hit, by a rookie pitcher who was forced into the game because of a mistake by an umpire. In fact, with runners on first and second the Marlins intentionally loaded the bases to face this player.
The reason this player was in the game was because the home plate umpire relayed to the Marlins manger the wrong information about a Cardinals double switch.
The Marlins then scored a run in the bottom of the tenth inning and had 2 base runners when the game ended.
4 hours and 7 minutes of the most bizarre, strange, and weirdest games ever played.

Sunday, June 24, 2012


The Cardinals swept the Royals today by the score of 11 - 8. There were 5 homeruns hit in the game and, as you know, homeruns are great fun for a TV baseball director to cut. The homeruns were the only part of this awful game that offered any enjoyment to me as I cut the game.
One cannot utter the words "good baseball" without also uttering "good pitching".
The Royals have some really talented players. Players that are fun and exciting to watch. Trust me, there have been many, many young talented and exciting players who have been ruined because they became use to losing. I truly hope this isn't the case with the Royals so I will offer the Royals organization some sound advice - develop pitching!

Saturday, June 23, 2012


I spoke with the Royals TV director and asked that his X-mo (tight cf) give me more batter shots than last might's telecast. He did and cam 6 was great. This has been a nice road trip from the TV side. Detroit and KC are both fun places to work. Would somebody please talk to the players and tell them to improve THEIR game.
Help us out Players - we want good TV as well as you do.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Hard Work

I spoke with the Kansas City Royals TV director this afternoon and we decided to put his X-Mo camera in the tight centerfield position and, thus, moving my camera 6 (tight cf) to the centerfield position (camera 4).
I, therefore, was down to just 2 cameras which I controlled because we were in the back end of a dual feed.
Well I'll tell you what, cutting a game in the back end of a dual situation with just two cameras is just plain hard work.
Then the Cardinals score 4 runs in the first inning and 6 runs in the second inning and led 10 - 1 after the top of the second inning.
2 cameras + 10 runs = hard work.

X-MO Camera

The Detroit Tigers TV team place their super slo-mo (x-mo) camera in the tight centerfield (cam 6) position. This is a great spot for that camera. Capturing the spin of the baseball as it nears the batter is awesome video.
I called our tech manager at Fox Sports Midwest and requested that we position our X-Mo camera there until further notice.
The Detroit visitor's crew is now my favorite road TV team. We had three nice telecasts. There are many aspects that make for a comfortable telecast. Certainly, the enjoyment of the viewer is of the highest priority. Succeeding at this priority AND enjoying this task as we televise (because of the people we work with) makes for an enjoyable experience for the visiting broadcast team as well.
Special thanks to the talented Detroit crew!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Nice And Smooth

The Cardinals beat the Tigers tonight 3 - 1 behind a brilliant performance from the Redbird's starting pitcher. This was also another excellent telecast even though it included a whip pan. I take full responsibility for that mistake as I wasn't very clear in my command to the camera operator.
This game and this telecast were both nice and smooth.
Just the way every member of every team (sports or telecast) hopes for every game/telecast.
I really enjoy working with this TV team. They don't take themselves too seriously yet they are serious about their work.
Nice and smooth.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Great Crew

Our game/telecast was out of Detroit tonight. Tonight was very enjoyable. I was able to watch Justin Verlander pitch for the Tigers and I was able to direct the game with a fantastic crew. These guys (and girls) are good. Very good. I really appreciated the fact that not only are they very good at what they do, they really enjoy what they do. There is a passion with this crew that is infectious. Justin Verlander may be the best pitcher in the game today and it was great fun watching him pitch. But, to me, it was more enjoyable watching the Detroit crew ply their craft.
Thank you Detroit crew, it is a pleasure being part of your team.

Sunday, June 17, 2012


Here was today's timeline for the Royals/ Cardinals game: 1:16 pm - 1st pitch 3:46 pm - Billy Butler hits a 2 out 0 - 2 pitch for a game tying (2 - 2) homerun in the top of the ninth inning. 5:35 pm - Yuniesky Betancourt hits a double to give the Royals a 3 - 2 lead in the top of the 14th inning. 5:56 pm - Yadier Molina ties the score with a 2-out single in the bottom of the 14th inning. 5:59 pm - Cardinals batter strikes out with runners on 1st and 2nd to end the inning. At that point I had never heard a TV truck so quiet. Then someone said "I have never seen a TV truck so stunned." 6:07 pm - Betancourt hits a 2-run homerun in the top of the 15th to give the Royals a 5 - 3 lead. 6:16 pm - 5 hours after the first pitch of the game the game ends. A stunning victory for the Royals. A stunning game for the TV crews.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

From The Onset

I knew this was going to be a brutal baseball game from the onset. During the top of the first inning the Cardinals seemed to complete a triple play. With runners on first and second the batter hit a soft liner to the pitcher who seemed to catch it. The baserunners who were off with the pitch were easily caught and the triple play was completed. Or so it seemed. The Royals manager complained, the umpires huddled, changed their original call and put the runners on second and third with one out. The Cardinals manager stormed out of the dugout and after a long delay was finally ejected. The Royals scored a run a led 1 - 0 after the top of the first. The Cardinals hit 2 homeruns in the bottom of the first and led 4 - 1 going into the second inning. The first inning took 42 minutes to play. 3:38 minutes after the first pitch and 310 pitches later the game ended with the Cardinals winning 10 - 7. A dreadful, dreadful game. I knew it from the onset.

Friday, June 15, 2012

A Wow Camera Finish

The Kansas City Royals beat the Cardinals tonght by the score of 3 - 2. The 2:39 game ended in extremely exciting fashion. With a runner on first and two outs in the bottom of the ninth the Cardinals attempted to steal second base. I stayed on camera 4 (CF) with the throw from the catcher. The ball got away from the shortstop who was covering and rolled towards the shortstop position as the runner broke for third base. I cut to camera 2 (high home) as the second baseman ran to the ball and the runner ran towards third. The second baseman threw wildly to third and the ball went up against the stands down the third base line. Our high home camera operator, Dawn, pulled out and kept the runner and the third baseman each in the shot and tightened in as the throw and the runner each came to home plate at the same time. The game ended as the runner was called out. This was just a brilliant shot by Dawn as she showed great perspective in her framing. This was a wow ending to a baseball game because of the great, great throw from the third baseman and a wow ending to a telecast with a great, great shot from the high home camera operator. Nicely done Dawn!!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Back To Back

This was another well-pitched, well-played game in which the Cardinals beat the White Sox 5 - 3 in 2:35. It is so nice having back to back game/telecasts that have a great flow to the show. Establishing a rhythm is really important when cutting a game. The shots are crisper, the replays are tighter and everyone on the TV crew (announcers included) benefits as a result. Tomorrow, the Kansas City Royals come to Busch Stadium for another interleague series. Back to back to back shows with a flow would be nice.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Important Telecast, Great Game

We had our annual Champions Club telecast tonight where the announcers sit outside the Champions Club to broadcast the game. The Champions Club is an all inclusive area in Busch Stadium that has outdoor seating, indoor air conditioning, free food and booze, and countless big screen tv's. We enjoy promoting this wonderful area to watch a Cardinals game. We also enjoy a 1 - 0 pitchers duel that ends in dramatic fashion. The Cardinals scored on a solo homerun in the bottom of the third inning. The White Sox threatened in both the top of the 8th and the top of the 9th innings. The 8th inning ended with a double play from a hitter who had homered off the same pitcher yesterday. In the top of the ninth inning, the Sox had runners on 1st and 3rd with one out and their best hitter at the plate. This batter hit into a game-ending double play on a 3 - 1 count. Our tight iso of the Cardinals closer was a great way to end our coverage. The emotion he expressed was memorable. This important telecast was one of our best deliveries of the year. Only fitting as this was the best game of the year thus far.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012


The Cardinals lost to the White Sox 6 - 1 in 2:40. I looked forward to tonight's game/telecast because the White Sox TV director is Jim Angio, who in my opinion, is the best TV baseball director ever. I made a point of watching his feed from our truck at different times during the game. This guy is so smooth. He never ties himself up or cuts his way into trouble. He is in total control the whole show. I can feel the confidence of his game cut as he directs the telecast. He is a master of setting up shots. He obviously knows where he will be in 5 or 6 or 7 shots down the line. I first noticed his work when he was directing a Chicago Black Hawks telecast against the Minnesots North Stars in the early 1980's. I remember thinking "wow, this guys is different from any other TV sports director that I had witnessed up until that time. In fact, I dedicated my book "Cutting The Game, Inside Television Baseball From the Director's Chair" to Jim "who inspired me" to become a director. Almost 30 years ago I sat in a TV truck and said "wow". Thirty years later things have not changed - "wow".

Sunday, June 10, 2012

I Wonder

The Indians defeated the Cardinals today by the score of 4 - 1 with a 3-run homerun in the top of the ninth inning. For a 1 - 1 game through eight innings, this was a game with few, if any, memorable moments. Yes, there was some good starting pitching from both teams. In fact, the Cardinals starter was making his major league debut and did quite nicely. Maybe it was what occurred on the field after the final out that blotted out any aspect of the actual game for me. After the final out was made I took a hero shot of the Indians pitcher who had just collected his Major League leading 20th save. (Coincidentally the Cubs won their 20th game of the season today but that's another story) My next hero shot was of the Tribe's second baseman who hit the game winning homerun in the ninth inning. As the announcers began wrapping up and preparing for their final toss, I wanted to finish the telecast with another shot of the closer (a former Cardinals) but I had to wait. He was on his hands and knees in front of the mound throwing up! I mean he was hurling. He then stood up and joined his teammates in celebration of the victory. I took the shot and closed out the telecast. I wonder if our viewers would have remembered anything of the game if I would have taken the shot of the player vomiting.

Saturday, June 9, 2012


Finally. A well-pitched, well-paced baseball game. A well-paced telecast - a show with a flow. The Cardinals lost to the Indians tonight by the score of 6 - 2 in 2:34. A new addition to our home telecasts began tonight. We placed a handheld camers behind homeplate and a few feet up the third baseline. This unique look was very effective and offered our viewers a quality view of the game. When a show has a flow everything seems to click. It seems odd but there is a feeling of calm excitement flowing through the telecast team. Calm because everything is clicking and excited because everything is working. We haven't had such a rewarding telecast in quite a while. We did tonight. Finally.

Friday, June 8, 2012

All You Need Is Love

I did not blog from Houston because my wife, step-son, and grandson were with me. We had a great time despite the horrific baseball that was played between the Cardinals and the Astros. Here is a brief description of this series from hell: 3 games, 10 hours and 15 minutes of play, 40 runs, 67 hits, and 7 errors. Don't get me wrong - I love directing major league baseball. But, in my 29 years of involvement with this great game I have never been a part of a weekend of bad baseball such as this one. Thank God part of my family was in Houston. I was able to forget the games and concentrate on my good fortune of having these people I love with me in Houston. For this I am truly blessed. The Beatles were right - "All you need is love."

Saturday, June 2, 2012

The Good With The Bad

The Bad: The Cardinals were shutout by the Mets for the second consecutive game by the score of 5 - 0. The Good: The game was well paced and was played in 2:34. The Bad: The Cardinals looked lifeless. The Good: Mets starting pitcher R. A. Dickey threw a complete game shutout with 73 strikes in a 100 pitch outing. The Bad: With the Cardinals playing on ESPN Sunday Night Baseball tomorrow I have a day off on the road. The Good: I will have dinner in Little Italy tomorrow night. The Bad: The Cardinals continue play in New York with a day game on Monday. The Good: My wife, stepson, and grandson will be in Houston when I get there Monday night. After that, no bad only good!

Friday, June 1, 2012

A No-Hitter

Cutting a homerun is fun even though they happen quite often. Cutting a walk-off base hit is more fun even though they do happen occasionally Cutting a walk-off homerun is really great fun even though they do occur every so often. Cutting a perfect game or a no-hitter is super fun because they are so rare. The final out of a no-hitter is really the culmination of a build up that begins in the seventh inning. When the seventh inning begins and a no-hitter is in progress, the pitcher is covered nonstop. Even when the no-hit pitcher's team is at-bat there is a camera on the pitcher in the dugout. Starting in the seventh inning all graphics are built in anticipation of the no-hitter. The commentary from the booth is concentrated on the possible history in the making. Indeed, the whole telecast is focused on the no-hitter. The focus of every member of the telecast team grows more intense with each pitch until the game is over and the no-hitter is attained. It is amazing how intense the focus is during a possible ho-hitter. There is nothing that could possibly distract the TV team from this focus. Nothing. Cutting Santana's no-hitter tonight was, indeed, super fun.