- Last Updated: 4:35 AM, August 19, 2012
- Posted: 12:38 AM, August 19, 2012
It’s hardly a classified secret that many play-by-players, TV and radio, are stuck in — and on — their, ugh, routines.
As if there had previously been much doubt, a few years ago, ESPN’s Chris Berman fully revealed himself to be a relentlessly self-promoting shtick-artist during a telecast from Wrigley Field.
A ball had already cleared the left-field wall for a home run, when Berman realized that he’d forgotten to apply his “Back, back, back” bit. So he said it anyway, describing the left fielder’s tracking of the ball’s as “back, back, back,” even after the left fielder had quit on it because the ball had already landed in the seats.
Then there was John Sterling’s choice to lead with his “Thuhhhh Yankees win!” bit — all Yankee wins sound alike! — rather than report that Dwight Gooden had just pitched a no-hitter.
Then there are the formulaic hollerers, such as Fox’s Gus Johnson and CBS’ Kevin Harlan, play-by-players who land gigs and continue to make good impressions on their bosses simply by screaming contrived excitement at anything and everything.
Was that an 8-yard play, an 80-yarder or was Harlan or Johnson just electrocuted? Hard to tell. Unless it’s on TV, where the con is self-evident.
And it’s now clear that Michael Kay’s standard postgame sense of “manageable” vs. “unmanageable” is predicated solely on how long a game runs. Circumstances — those he witnessed and described over several hours — are to be ignored or quickly forgotten.
When Kay, several years ago, began to classify long-running, slow-moving, dreadfully dull games as “unmanageable” — a 4-2, 8 1/2-inning game that ran 3:25, for example — his attention to the matter, especially with 11 p.m. and/or sleep nearing, was welcomed and appreciated.
Orioles-Yankees and Red Sox-Yankees games, for no good reason, often made Gone With The Wind seem like the coming attractions.
But now ...
Thursday’s Rangers-Yankees game, according to Kay on YES, ran “an unmanageable 3:34.”
No, it didn’t.
Given that he called the game — every pitch — Kay, more than anyone, should have recognized that it easily and logically could have lasted four hours, that 3:34 for such a game actually was pretty good, perhaps on the quick side.
The game went a full nine innings. Sixteen runs were scored; there were 26 hits, eight walks, and two errors. Only one home run. In a game in which Texas lost a four-run lead, then the Yankees took the lead, then Texas went back up, a total of 10 pitchers were used.
And it wasn’t that the pitchers were slow to throw pitches; it was a case of them having to throw 327 of them.Follow @NYPostsports