Center Field Shot: A History of Baseball on Television

Center Field Shot: A History of Baseball on Television

by James R. Walker, Robert V. Bellamy Jr.
     
 


In Baseball Weekly’s list of things that most affected baseball in the twentieth century, television ranked second—behind only the signing of Jackie Robinson. The new medium of television exposed baseball to a genuinely national audience; altered the financial picture for teams, owners, and players; and changed the way Americans followed theSee more details below

Overview


In Baseball Weekly’s list of things that most affected baseball in the twentieth century, television ranked second—behind only the signing of Jackie Robinson. The new medium of television exposed baseball to a genuinely national audience; altered the financial picture for teams, owners, and players; and changed the way Americans followed the game. Center Field Shot explores these changes—all even more prominent in the first few years of the twenty-first century—and makes sense of their meaning for America’s pastime.
 
Center Field Shot traces a sometimes contentious but mutually beneficial relationship from the first televised game in 1939 to the new era of Internet broadcasts, satellite radio, and high-definition TV, considered from the perspective of businessmen collecting merchandising fees and advertising rights, franchise owners with ever more money to spend on talent, and broadcasters trying to present a game long considered “unfriendly” to television. Ultimately the association of baseball with television emerges as a reflection of—perhaps even a central feature of—American culture at large.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780803248250
Publisher:
UNP - Bison Books
Publication date:
06/01/2008
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
402
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.90(d)

Meet the Author


James R. Walker is professor of communication and chair of the Department of Communications at Saint Xavier University. Robert V. Bellamy Jr. is an associate professor in the Department of Journalism and Multimedia Arts at Duquesne University.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments     ix
Introduction: The Game in the Box     xi
The Local Game
The Experimental Years     3
The First Seasons of Televised Baseball     22
Team Approaches to Television in the Broadcast Era     43
The National Game
Televising the World Series     67
Origins of the Game of the Week     97
The National Television Package, 1966-89     120
National Broadcasts in the Cable Era     146
The Pay Television Era     163
Television and Baseball's Dysfunctional Marriage
Television As Threat, Television As Savior     179
Television and the "Death" of the Golden Age Minors     204
Baseball, Television, Congress, and the Law     219
Baseball and Television Synergy     236
How the Game Was Covered
The Announcer in the Television Age     257
Innovations in Production Practices     277
Epilogue: Baseball in the Advanced Media Age     311
Televised Baseball Games, 1949-81     323
Notes     335
Index     371

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